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Halloween Songs

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This ain't no Christmas Cookout, no Thanksgiving Thrash, not even a Fourth of July Jig!

Every night, to me, is Halloween
Like an ancient scene, you know just what I mean
King Diamond, "Halloween"

Perhaps because Halloween is a comparatively contemporary holiday, divorced from its religious roots and having no set icon (Stingy Jack being the most popular pick at this), there aren't any traditional Halloween carols played on repeat on the radio or sung door to door. Sure, there have been attempts at codifying certain pop tunes as Halloween Songs — such as Bobby Pickett's "Monster Mash" or Michael Jackson's "Thriller" — but these can of course be listened to at any time of the year, and are only popular around Halloween for their "scary" themes. Ditto horror movie scores.

Still, Halloween Specials and/or the occasional Halloween Episode will often have their own songs about the holiday itself, and these will typically focus on either the general idea of what the holiday is about or a specific aspect such as dressing up in costumes, free candy, making jack-o'-lanterns, free candy, innocently scaring or pranking people, and free candy.

Compare Fear Song. Sister Trope to Christmas Songs and Anti-Christmas Song. See also The Dead Can Dance, Skeletal Musician, Xylophones for Walking Bones, and Monster Mash. A common version is the Michael Jackson's Thriller Parody.


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    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The memorable theme song from Ghostbusters is often heard at Halloween, both for being extremely catchy and for featuring lyrics like "I ain't afraid of no ghosts!" All together now: "Who You Gonna Call?"
  • The 1986 television film of The Worst Witch features Tim Curry as the Grand Wizard who sings "Anything Can Happen on Halloween" at the climax of the film.
  • Several songs from The Rocky Horror Picture Show have become unofficial favorites for Halloween such as "The Time Warp", particularly on oldies and classic hits radio stations.

  • There's a whole catalogue of filk songs based on the writings of H. P. Lovecraft, including many that are parodies of Christmas carols appropriate for Halloween listening.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Saturday Night Live:
    • In "Spooky Song," a pair of teenagers try to hook up in a graveyard during Halloween Night, only for four ghosts to appear and sing about how they each died. One of the ghosts insists on not sharing his story (played by Chance the Rapper), only for the others to make him divulge in order to return to their graves. He reveals that he electrocuted himself to death with a lightning rod up his ass because batteries no longer did it for him.
    • In the sketch "Graveyard Songs," a pair of visitors (Sasheer Zamata and Pete Davidson) wander into a graveyard at night on Halloween, only for the grim reaper statue, a tree and two headbust gravestones to come alive and start singing a jolly halloween tune (the titular Graveyard Song). Unfortunately for them, a pair of ghosts named Paul and Phil (played by (Jim Carrey and Taran Killam) try singing along, but their lyrics derail the song's intent and they spoil the riddle the singers had for the couple.
    • In the sketch "Haunted Elevator," the guests on a Halloween ride are bewildered to discover that the majority of floors feature David S. Pumpkins (Tom Hanks), who comes complete with his own theme song, a wacky dance track to which he boogies with two skeletons.
  • In the one of the Cheers "Bar Wars" episodes set at Halloween, the rival bar pranks Cheers by rigging their jukebox to play "Monster Mash" incessantly. Sam is annoyed by the song but concedes it is Actually Pretty Funny. (In syndication, the song was replaced with "Vampire Twist" by Brave Combo.)
  • In Superstore, Garrett spends the Halloween episode "Costume Competition" trying to block out a song called Halloween Surfboard, which is being played on loop. When he finally snaps, he tries to stop it by getting on the intercom and rambling for the rest of his shift.
  • The Addams Family: The famous theme song is frequently grouped with other spooky-themed music like the aforementioned Ghostbusters theme and Thriller.

  • Halloween Hootenanny is a 1998 Concept Album featuring Halloween songs written by various musicians known for writing spooky songs, including John Zacherley, Rob Zombie, The Reverend Horton Heat, The Bomboras, etc.
  • Blue Öyster Cult updated the "ghost riders in the sky" cowboy legend (itself the basis for a popular song of that name recorded by Johnny Cash among others) for the late 20th century by having a trio of Hell's Angels going out for a night-time ride on an unlit coastal road. They pay no heed to the date, and the inevitable coke-and-booze-fuelled crash leads them to a post-mortem interview with Satan himself. The track is "Feel The Thunder", on the LP The Revölution by Night
    On October thirty-first many years ago three friends went out for a ride...
    And the Beast decreed, on that night, their souls must be tried!
    now you can see them, every All Hallows Eve, forever doomed to ride... feel the Thunder!
  • The Misfits have practically made a career of making Halloween themed punk music, which makes sense considering they are often held as the progenitors of the horror punk subgenre.
  • "Pet Semetary" by The Ramones is often included in most Halloween playlists and mixtapes, for very obvious reasons.
  • Voltaire makes a ton of songs perfect for Halloween, and even one for the Mexican holiday of Dia de los Muertos.
  • Oingo Boingo produced a lot of Halloween appropriate songs that usually find themselves on most people's Halloween playlist, most notably "Dead Man's Party" and "No One Lives Forever".
  • Dead Kennedys' "Halloween" is a variation on the trope. It's not about the spooky or supernatural aspects of All Hallows' Eve; its subject is a repressed office worker who uses the holiday as an annual excuse to party and get "shitfaced", while allowing "social regulations" to dictate his behavior the rest of the year.
  • Aqua produced a song named "Halloween" as well, this one centers around typical horror movie tropes.
  • "Every Day is Halloween" by Ministry is about someone embracing the Goth subculture despite being looked down on for it note , but it's become heavily associated with the holiday anyway due to the title. At least one cover version, by The Postmarks, has altered the lyrics to be about someone who literally wants to celebrate Halloween everyday.
  • Screamin' Jay Hawkins' best known song, "I Put a Spell on You", is a classic Halloween song that was later featured in the Disney movie Hocus Pocus, where it was sang by three literal witches.
  • Songdrops has "The 13 Nights of Halloween", a parody of "The Twelve Days of Christmas", about some witches giving creepy gifts.
  • The 1962 novelty hit "Monster Mash", by Bobby "Boris" Pickett and the Crypt-Kickers, has become a perennial Halloween favorite, complete with the singer doing his best Boris Karloff impression, spooky sound effects, and lyrics about all of the different Halloween monsters starting a Dance Sensation. Some of Pickett's other songs, such as "Blood Bank Blues" and "Werewolf Watusi," are simlarly good examples of spooky-themed music.
  • The Alkaline Trio has the song "Halloween".
  • Aviators has "All Hallows."
  • "Horror Movie", by Australian Glam Rock band Skyhooks, although if you listen closely, the "horror movie" they're referring to is the nightly news.
  • Mystery Skulls with their song "Ghost" due to both its official and fan created music videos.
  • Given his love of monster movies, it's probably no surprise that Frank Zappa had a few, including "Zomby Woof" and "Goblin Girl".
  • "Werewolves of London," which revolves around the titular werewolves trying to satisfy their meat cravings at Chinese restaurants, by Warren Zevon.
  • The memetic "Spooky Scary Skeletons" by Andrew Gold.
  • Midnight Syndicate is a group specializing in all manner of creepy, dark, or gothic tunes, which are well known for creating the perfect atmosphere for things like haunted house attractions.
  • Kristen Lawrence is a composer, organist, and vocalist who predominantly makes Halloween-themed music and even calls her songs "Halloween Carols."
  • "Trick or Treat" by Otis Redding.
  • "It's Halloween" by The Shaggs.
  • Elmo Shropshire (aka Dr. Elmo), famous for "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer," has an entire Halloween-themed album called Dr. Elmo Sings the Boos.
  • "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Nature Trail to Hell" discusses the eponymous (fictional) horror movie.
  • Ice Nine Kills have made a career out of horror-themed music, and even have a song dedicated to Halloween specifically ("Stabbing in the Dark").
  • Hyde has an annual gathering of friends to his place each Halloween. In 2012, he and VAMPS colleague K.A.Z created the Halloween Junky Orchestra which came out with the song Halloween Party (video can be seen on YouTube).
  • Kim Petras recorded a Halloween-themed EP called Turn Off the Light, Vol. 1, expanding it into a full album exactly a year later.
  • Pretty much anything by Zombina and the Skeletones, since they're a horror punk band.
  • TV Horror Host Zacherley's Spook Along with Zacherley is an album of Halloween songs, most notably the grisly two-part "Dinner with Drac" (part two of which got banned from the radio) and perennial horror convention favorite "Come With Me to Transylvania".
  • Pick literally any song by Creature Feature. All their songs have an upbeat gothic tune themed around monsters and horror.
  • ”Calling All The Monsters” by China Anne McClain.
  • Michael Jackson's Thriller


  • Many stations will slip in at least a few thematically-appropriate tunes when Halloween rolls around, and there are even some (albeit mostly online) devoted entirely to the genre and playing it year-round. Examples include Halloween Radio and Dead Air Radio.

  • The Lady of the Slipper (1912) has a song titled "Games of Halloween," which is followed by a "Witches' Ballet."
  • Ruddigore by Gilbert and Sullivan features the solo "When the Night Wind Howls", in which the ghost of Sir Roderick explains how The Dead Can Dance on spooky nights.

    Theme Parks 
  • While "Grim Grinning Ghosts" was originally just the theme to The Haunted Mansion ride at the various Disney Theme Parks, Disney has since codified it as their official theme to be used for any inter-franchise Halloween special, it being used as the main theme for the Happy Hallowishes fireworks show and sung by the ghosts of the famous ride in the House of Mouse Halloween Special "House Ghosts".
    • Disneyland Paris also introduced "It's Halloween-lo-ween", with the lyrics basically asking everyone to dance and enjoy Halloween night. Jess Harnell brings his best pipes to the song. The song has been imported to other Disney theme parks around the world, notably the "Frightfully Fun" parade at Disneyland and the "Disney Villains Mix-and Mingle" show at Disney World.

    Video Games 
  • Taiko no Tatsujin has the song "Hello! Halloween", about preparing for Halloween, dressing up in various costumes, and going trick-or-treating and hoping for lots of tasty treats.

    Web Videos 
  • Jacksfilms has "Razors In Your Apple", parodying the common scare about bad things being in Trick-Or-Treat candy by insisting "all of your candy's got to go".

    Western Animation 


Halloween is here at last

Halloween is here, everyone is in costume and everyone is having fun. (Well, almost everyone)

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