Mix: Wholesome Halloween

Halloween has been my favorite holiday literally since I was born. See below for proof (I’m on the left). It’s the only one whose “spirit” rivals that of Christmas, and shaped so many of our childhoods in important ways through its complexities of disguise, fear, independence, etc. For the entirety of my trick-or-treating tenure I was obsessed with the truly scary aspects of the holiday, always hiding behind corners to scare friends or carving horrifyingly grotesque jack-o-lanterns or getting sent to the principal’s office for my disturbing pencil drawings. But as I grow older, I’ve begun to see how the immense space that Halloween occupies in our culture remains largely unchanged in both size and content: nostalgia. For many people (including me), the farther away from your childhood you get, the more you want to reclaim it in some way; since Halloween is something of which almost everyone has fond memories, we collectively feed into the stagnant, nostalgia-fueled zeitgeist of “spooky” songs, classic movies, unchanging traditions, and general atmosphere of fear and fun at the same time—mostly fun, I’d argue. I don’t think anyone loves Halloween because they like to scare or be scared. We love it because it’s nearly impossible to feel otherwise, and that’s not a bad thing at all. While you may not appreciate my rambling pedantry, I hope you will feel differently about this collection of wholesome Halloween tunes (appropriate for all ages).

00:00. Lonesome Wyatt and the Holy Spooks – “Halloween Is Here” from Halloween Is Here (Tribulation, 2013)

02:24. Ray Parker Jr. – “Ghostbusters” from Ghostbusters Original Soundtrack (Arista, 1984)

06:19. Dead Man’s Bones – “In the Room Where You Sleep” from Dead Man’s Bones (Anti-, 2009)

09:29. The Marshmallow Ghosts – “The Hearse Song” from The Marshmallow Ghosts (Graveface, 2011)

13:10. Oingo Boingo – “Dead Man’s Party” from Dead Man’s Party (MCA, 1985)

19:30. DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince – “A Nightmare on My Street” from A Nightmare on My Street (Jive, 1988)

24:28. David Bowie – “Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)” from Scary Monsters (RCA, 1980)

29:17. Whodini – “The Haunted House of Rock (Extended Version)” from The Haunted House of Rock (Jive, 1983)

35:45. Rockwell – “Somebody’s Watching Me” from Somebody’s Watching Me (Motown, 1983)

39:31. Orange Hell – “Hybrid Moments” (Misfits cover) from Three Hits From… (Funeral Party, 2018)