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Your Halloween Soundtrack

Two years ago, I petitioned to the world, i.e. to the loyal, super-awesome readers of this blog, the need for Halloween songs. And I wasn’t talking about scary sounds to hear in the dark like you might hear at one of those $72 Haunted House in Kansas City’s West Bottoms or Dallas’ Deep Ellum. I mean real songs. Pop songs. Rock songs. Rap songs. Songs that aren’t made for Halloween but sound like Halloween.

So…I decided to make a Halloween soundtrack this year. You’ll see some songs from that old list and plenty of new ones. You won’t see the “Monster Mash” by Bobby Pickett because who the hell would honestly want to hear that song at a party. Feel free to add some Halloween songs you can think of in the comments section.

And if you have a Halloween party this weekend, I highly recommend all of these. Or bring it to a party if you’re not throwing one. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

“Amazing,” by Kanye West
Yeah, “I’m a monster. I’m a maven.” This song will do just fine. It’s also a really good song for warming up for a basketball game.

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Introduction and Halloween music

So I decided to start a blog. The first post is about something entirely stupid – Halloween songs. Skip past this lame intro if you wish. But before the official first post, I thought I would explain why I’m starting this blog.

Why does anyone start a blog? Now that’s a great question. And when did they start?

I’m sure a quick Wikipedia search could answer at least the second question and possibly the first. But I would rather ramble.

For me, blogs started my senior of high school. A fellow staff member on the high school newspaper staff named Allie featured an opinion article* about Xanga**. I believe there was a headline or something that read “Blog rings of fire” or something like that. I didn’t know what a blog was, so I was puzzled when I read the headline.

*Opinion stories in those days for the HS paper were not so, um, good? Once I wrote an opinion column about daylight savings time. Someone else wrote one about condemning blue Christmas lights, not aware that blue is a Hanukah color. Fortunately the zero percent Jewish population at St. Thomas Aquinas High School seemed not to care.

**I remember Xanga seemed kind of lame. Yet it was quite similar to Facebook. Funny how no one even remembers Xanga now.

Seriously. I had never heard of a blog before. I think they had just gotten popular around this time, but they could have been around for several years and I would’ve had no idea. So I wanted to find the definition of a blog.

I couldn’t. I Googled* it. I asked around. I tried reading blogs. They all looked different. Some were people’s opinions about politics or sports. Some were just pictures. Some were random thoughts. Some seemed to be nothing more than a person’s daily schedule.

*By 2005, had we started using Google as a verb?

Then it became clear. There really is no definition for a blog. Blogs are anything. Blogs are you.

YOU make a blog what it is. And maybe that’s why people start blogs. I suspect plenty of cultural scientists and people above the age of 50 would say our generation keeps blogs because we’re narcissists, we like attention, we like to talk about ourselves, and so on.

But those people are missing something. Blogs provide a beautiful way to express something. There’s a great possibility few or no people will read that “something.” That’s not the point. It feels good to express ourselves.

If you it correctly, you can talk about yourself, talk about the world, talk about sports.

You can make the mundane interesting. That’s what I hope to do. 

Nothing really exciting happens in my life. Let’s see, today I woke up around 8:30, went to a coffee shop for several hours and did some work, along with this blog. I’ll probably run later, eat dinner, watch 30 Rock and The Office and possibly a bootlegged copy of Paranormal Activity with one of my roommates.

But in the routine, I believe we all find our own niche. We all have cool stories and cool thoughts.

I’m not sure if anyone will want to read my thoughts. In fact, I’m not so sure why anybody WOULD want to. But I like to write about them, even if no one reads them.

So here it goes. I might post something once a week. Maybe more, maybe less. I might not post something ever again (hopefully that doesn’t happen). I would like to think that I will post something when I just feel like writing, when there is something that I would like to share.

Now… on to Halloween songs before it’s too late.

In Kansas City alone, two radio stations play entirely Christmas music from mid-November until Dec. 26. As Christmas comes close, two more start playing Christmas music most of the time.

Christmas music is huge. Jessica Simpson, Mariah Carey, Michael Buble and Taylor Swift are just a few of today’s pop stars who have Christmas CDs. Elvis has done a Christmas song. Run DMC has done a Christmas song. So has John Lennon. Yes, Christmas music is a big deal.

And it makes me wonder. Why is Christmas the only holiday that has its own distinct music?

Part of the reason must be that Christmas is clearly the biggest holiday in this country. It also has a clear definition. At its best, Christmas is about love, good cheer and giving. Those are good themes to write positive songs about.

Other holidays don’t necessarily have such clear-cut themes that would work well for music. But I think Halloween is an exception.

Artists can make songs with scary sounding beats, supernatural themes or just, well, dark subject matter. Songs like that could be enjoyed all year but especially around Halloween, and in my opinion, there are already a few songs like this.

Here are seven songs that fit that mold and could be considered Halloween music, although I am sure there quite a few more.   

  1. “Thriller” by Michael Jackson – Obviously.
  2. “Monster Mash” by Bobby Pickett – Obviously.
  3. “Disturbia” by Rihanna – This video is strange, too.  
  4. “She Wolf” by Shakira – Has a creepy beat and howling in the background.
  5. “Nightmare on my Street” by Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince – Can’t remember what this song is about, but the name sure sounds Halloween-esque.
  6. “Mouth” by Bush – This is a great song. It was written for the movie, “An American Werewolf in Paris.”
  7. “The Beginning is the End is the Beginning” by Smashing Pumpkins – Maybe this is pushing it a little bit, but this is close enough.   
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