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Spooky Season: Halloween Songs Off The Beaten Path

While as a general rule it is bad advice to leave the beaten path on Halloween (buddy system, people!), I’ve taken the risk to uncover some lesser-played spooky tunes for your listening pleasure.

The last thing the world probably needs is another article full of Halloween music.  But this article is hand-crafted especially for you, my Ordinary compatriots. I literally crafted it using my hands, and my ears too I guess.  I think I deserve a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup for that.  Let’s hope so since I’ve already eaten 73.

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The first time I heard this song, I was in the car and muttered “blue snake, green snake” to myself again and again till I got home so I could Google it. Johnny Otis “Castin my Spell”.

Johnny Otis Castin' My Spell

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Because it wouldn’t be Halloween without a song equating women’s sexuality to sorcery, here’s The Sonics’ “The Witch”.

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If you ever wanted to see a twist on Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” only featuring 100% more violins, I give you Lindsay Stirling’s “Moon Trance”.

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I’m not sure how spooky this is technically speaking like in a skeletons and zombies kind of way, but I am super into this song right now and want to share it with everyone. The Dead South “In Hell I’ll Be In Good Company”.

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The world needs more songs about mummies, so Josh Ritter gave us “The Curse”. Great video on this one.

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I suspect the wolf in this song is probably a euphemism for something (gonna go out on a limb and guess “female sexuality”), but just for today, let’s call it a song about werewolves.  PS, there is some nudity in this vid, and also some dubstep.  Ya been warned.  David Guetta ft. Sia “She Wolf”.

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Cyndi Lauper tells an eerie tale of a gypsy-procured love potion gone wrong in “I’ll Kiss You”.

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This is a pretty well-known song, but is rarely included in Halloween music lists.  It’s an enormously creepy song though. The Toadies’ “Possum Kingdom”.

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The Decemberists have several creepy songs and in fact an entire spookily-themed album called “The Hazards of Love” that everyone should give a listen to because it’s fantastic, but this song is a masterpiece.  Best song on the list, IMO.  “The Mariner’s Revenge”.

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There are a LOT of spooky songs about swamps.  I have been in swamps, and the only disturbing thing I ever saw there was skunk cabbage.  But the Charlie Daniels Band apparently found one of the haunted ones.  “The Legend of Wooly Swamp”.

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Listening to The Beatles’ “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer” reminds me that when my husband and I were young and dumb, we almost named our first child “Maxwell” after this song.  Luckily the better angels of our nature prevailed.

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I almost had to cancel this whole entire article because I couldn’t remember the name of this song.   Another mysterious tale of haunted swamps and female sexuality.  Jim Stafford, “Swamp Witch”.

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Again, I think the wolf imagery may be subtextual, but screw that, it’s a werewolf song.  First Aid Kit, “Wolf”.  I really do wish this video was a little less cheesy, though.

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Muse brings us “Psycho”, a song about the military turning people into killing machines, which is seriously way more frightening than ghouls and goblins. Be warned, this song has a lot of cursing in it.

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Here’s another very well known song – Katy Perry’s “ET” – that for some reason isn’t associated with Halloween, despite some pretty disturbing lyrics.  Plus, wasn’t ET a Halloween movie?

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And last but not least, Annie Lennox sings a “Love Song For a Vampire”.  Unfortunately, this video is a movie tie-in and sucks and I don’t mean in a vampire kind of way.  But the song is purty, and I needed a vampire song, and most of them have been played to death.  For anyone who’s ever been in a relationship with a soul-sucking monster (and who among us hasn’t, amirite???), this works on a couple different levels.

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And if those songs aren’t Halloweeny enough for you, here’s You Tuber Brian Hull singing Monster Mash in lots of villainous voices.

If you still need more creepy tunes to do the Zombie Shuffle to, here’s a good article from Den of Geek full of Halloween songs, most of which I’ve never even heard of and have made plans to listen to later.

Happy Halloween!


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Kristin is a geek, a libertarian, and a domestic goddess. She lives in a wildlife refuge in rural Washington state with too many children and way too many animals and works with women around the world as a fertility counselor. There's also a blog which most people would very much disapprove of https://atomicfeminist.com/

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37 thoughts on “Spooky Season: Halloween Songs Off The Beaten Path

  1. So one from my German days that registers on the creepy meter. This actually got to be a big enough hit they did an English version as well, but the German, especially the fill of the angry little kid counting in it, really makes this. It’s roughly a take on “hide and seek” with the chorus loosely translatable to what American children would say “ready or not, here I come”.

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  2. Left a gimungous bowl of candy on the front porch with a small sign that said:

    “Please take one. (If you are extra cute or extra scary or extra whatever it is that Superheroes or Star Wars characters are, you can take two.)”

    I came home to a bowl that I don’t know whether or not it has even been touched.

    Got a call from my mother-in-law a few moments ago and she told me that my brother-in-law did something similar so he could take his kiddo out around the block and, when he came home, not only was the candy gone, but the bowl was too.

    While the idea of someone stealing all of the candy irritates me, it’s a risk that I knew I was willing to take when I left the bowl on the front porch.

    But stealing the bowl too?

    Man. That’s *LOW*.

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