Spooky Tunes for any Occasion

Halloween is hands down my favorite holiday. October opens with my birthday, brings cooler Michigan fall temperatures and then ends on a high note with Halloween. The entire month makes it okay to watch endless scary movies, decorate my home and listen to instrumental horror soundtracks on repeat.

So whether you’re just looking for a good collection of Halloween flavored music or you’re hosting a Halloween party and you’re not sure what type of music you’ll need… below are some lists that may help you out. Now I am not dumb enough to try and rank these songs, as the internet is not a nice place. Everyone has their favorites for a host of different reasons. These are just lists, no rankings here. If I missed anything, leave it in the comments and I will add it in. For fun, I have also created and shared the entire playlist on iTunes. Just search ‘Curator 135’s Scarefest’.

I recommend you hit the shuffle button and let it play. It’s currently at 145 songs and comes in at just under nine hours.

The Basic List

You’re DJ’ing a school Halloween party or you’re afraid of offending someone. Stick to the ‘classics’.

  • Thriller – Michael Jackson
  • Monster Mash – Bobby “Boris” Pickett & the Crypt-Kickers
  • Somebody’s Watching Me – Rockwell
  • Haunted House – Jumpin’ Gene Simmons
  • The Purple People Eater – Sheb Wooley
  • Witch Doctor – David Seville
  • Love Potion #9 – The Clovers
  • I Put a Spell on You – Screamin’ Jay Hawkins
  • Dinner With Drac, Pt. 1 – John Zacherle
  • The Devil Went Down to Georgia – The Charlie Daniels Band
  • Superstition – Stevie Wonder
  • Grimm Grinning Ghosts (Haunted Mansion) – The Mellomen, Bill Lee & Thurl Ravenscroft

Well-Known Halloween Rockers

You’re hosting a party full of baby boomers, they lived through the sixties and seventies and love to reminisce.

  • Bad Moon Rising – Creedence Clearwater Revival
  • Witch Queen of New Orleans – Redbone
  • Devil Woman – Cliff Richards
  • Sympathy for the Devil – Rolling Stones
  • Whistlin’ Past the Graveyard – Tom Waits
  • Creature from the Black Lagoon – Dave Edmunds
  • Abracadabra – Steve Miller Band
  • Werewolves of London – Warren Zevon
  • Frankenstein – Edgar Winter Group
  • Evil Woman – Electric Light Orchestra
  • Evil Ways – Santana
  • Psycho Killer – Talking Heads
  • Witchy Woman – The Eagles
  • Hells Bells – AC/DC
  • Season of the Witch – Donovan
  • Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps) – David Bowie
  • People are Strange – The Doors
  • (Don’t Fear) The Reaper – Blue Oyster Cult

Creepy Atmosphere

A great soundtrack can make a scary movie even better. Put on a few of these if you’re looking to make your crowd feel uneasy.

  • Hellraiser – Christopher Young
  • The Shining (Main Title) – Chuck Cirino
  • The Dead Walk – John Harrison & Jim Blazer (Day of the Dead)
  • Wrath – Howard Shore (Se7en)
  • Prelude – Bernard Herrmann (Psycho)
  • The Murder – Bernard Herrmann (Psycho)
  • Through Pain to Heaven – Popol Vuh (Nosferatu the Vampyre)
  • Humanity (Pt. 1) – Ennio Morricone (The Thing)
  • Susperia – Goblin
  • Candyman Suite: Music Box – Philip Glass
  • Halloween Theme – John Carpenter
  • The Purge Siren Dubstep – Macpro
  • Tubular Bells (From “The Exorcist”) – Mike Oldfield
  • Stranger Things – Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein
  • The X Files Theme – John Beal
  • The Twilight Zone Main Theme – Geek Music
  • Hedwig’s Theme – John Williams (Harry Potter)
  • Scarecrow Attack – Rob Zombie (House of a 1000 Corpses)
  • American Horror Story Theme – Cesar Davila Irizarry & Charlie Clouser
  • In the Hall of the Mountain King – Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
  • Silent Hill Theme – Edgar Rothermich
  • Alan Wake – Petri Alanko
  • Nightmare – Artie Shaw (Bioshock 2)
  • Clarice – Howard Shore & Munich Symphony Orchestra (Silence of the Lambs)
  • Main Title (A Nightmare on Elm Street) – Charles Bernstein
  • Main Title and First Victim – John Williams (Jaws)
  • Vampire Hunters – Wojciech Kilar (Bram Stoker’s Dracula)
  • Every 27 Years – Benjamin Wallfisch (IT)
  • Carol Anne’s Theme (End Title) – Jerry Goldsmith (Poltergeist)
  • 28 Theme – John Murphy (28 Weeks Later)
  • Opening (Sarah’s Theme) – Marco Beltrami & Anna Drubich (Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark)
  • Overlay of Evil/Main Title – Harry Manfredini
  • The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Theme (Disney World) – Richard Bellis & Marious Constant
  • Ave Satani – Jerry Goldsmith (Omen)
  • The Overlook – The Newton Brothers (Doctor Sleep)
  • Polymorphia – Leonard Slatkin & The National Philharmonic Orchestra (The Exorcist)
  • Theme from The Fog – John Carpenter
  • Theme from the Walking Dead – Bear McCreary
  • Twin Peaks Theme – Angelo Badalamenti
  • Murder/Mermaid/Heavy Labour – Mark Korven (The Lighthouse)
  • Face Hugger – Jerry Goldsmith (Alien)
  • Gassed – Bobby Krlic (Midsommar)
  • A Witch Stole Sam – Mark Korven (The VVitch)
  • Dirty Little Secret – Benjamin Wallfisch & Pennywise (IT)
  • Tales from the Crypt – Danny Elfman
  • Hello Zep + Overture – Charlie Clouser (Saw)
  • Pas De Deux – Michael Abels (Us)
  • Blair Witch – Adam Wingard
  • End Title (from “Beetlejuice”) – The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Resident Evil Main Theme – Geek Music

Movie and Television Inspired

Like the list above, these songs all come from television shows and movies. Less creepy, more vocals and fun!

  • Ghostbusters – Ray Parker Jr.
  • Magic Dance – David Bowie (Labyrinth)
  • Prologue (Little Shop of Horrors) – Full Cast
  • Time Warp – Full Cast (Rocky Horror Picture Show)
  • The Munsters Theme – Television’s Greatest Hits Band
  • This Is the Night – The Weird Sisters (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire)
  • This is Halloween – Citizens of Halloween
  • The Addams Family Theme Song – Vic Mizzy
  • Funeral March of a Marionette – Eric Hammerstein & London Promenade Orchestra

Recent Alternatives

The eighties, nineties and 2000’s have brought us some monster themed hits.

  • We Only Come Out at Night – Smashing Pumpkins
  • Heads Will roll – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  • Zombie – Cranberries
  • Dead Man’s Party – Oingo Boingo
  • Howlin’ For You – The Black Keys
  • Bela Lugosi is Dead – Bauhaus
  • Red Right Hand – Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
  • Little Ghost – The White Stripes
  • Wolf Like Me – TV on the Radio
  • The Killing Moon – Echo And The Bunnymen
  • Seven Devils – Florence + The Machine
  • A Wolf At The Door – Radiohead
  • The Yawning Grave – Lord Huron
  • Bury a Friend – Billie Eilish
  • Telling Ghosts – Puscifer
  • The Noose – A Perfect Circle
  • Cradles – Sub Urban
  • INFERNO – Bella Poarch & Sub Urban
  • The Nurse Who Loved Me – A Perfect Circle

Booish Bops

Even ghosts and ghouls want to leave it all out on the dance floor sometimes.

  • My Family – Migos, Karol G, Snoop Dogg
  • Spooky, Scary Skeletons (Undead Tombstone Remix) – Andrew Gold
  • Disturbia – Rhianna
  • Calling All the Monsters – China Anne McClain
  • A Nightmare on My Street – DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
  • Bamm – Milo Manheim, Meg Donnelly & Kylee Russell
  • Run (I’m a Natural Disaster) – Gnarls Barkley
  • Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites – Skrillex

Shout at the Devil

These artists go above and beyond when it comes to costumes, sound and overall spooky feel. If things need to get a little heavy this Halloween, start with these.

  • Dragula – Rob Zombie
  • Living Dead Girl – Rob Zombie
  • American Witch – Rob Zombie
  • Sweet Dreams (are Made of This) – Marilyn Manson
  • Long Hard Road Out of Hell – Marilyn Manson & Sneaker Pimps
  • Wait and Bleed – Slipknot
  • The Day the World Went Away – Nine Inch Nails
  • Change (In the House of Flies) – Deftones
  • Every Day is Halloween – Ministry
  • Feed My Frankenstein – Alice Cooper
  • Welcome to my Nightmare – Alice Cooper
  • Ballad of Dwight Fry – Alice Cooper
  • Bark at the Moon – Ozzy Osbourne
  • Mr. Crowley – Ozzy Osbourne
  • Pet Sematary – Ramones

Breathing New and Different Life

While I love a solid horror movie score with its plucky strings and building sound, a perfectly placed song that comes from leftfield is what really puts a smile on my face.

  • Goodbye Horses – Q Lazzerus (Silence of the Lambs)
  • I Got 5 On It ‘Tethered Mix’ – Luniz (Us)
  • Hurdy Gurdy Man – Donovan (Zodiac)
  • Mr. Sandman – The Chordettes (Halloween 2)
  • Midnight, The Stars and You – Al Bowlly (The Shining)
  • Sleep Walk – Betsy Brye (The Conjuring)
  • The Man Comes Around – Johnny Cash (Dawn of the Dead)
  • Hip to Be Square – Huey Lewis & The News (American Psycho)
  • Rocky Mountain High – John Denver (Final Destination)
  • Keep a Knockin’ – Little Richard (Christine)
  • Jeepers Creepers – Paul Whiteman (Jeepers Creepers)
  • I Remember You – Slim Whitman (House of a 1000 Corpses)
  • Tip Toe Through the Tulips – Tiny Tim (Insidious)
  • Mama Tried – Merle Haggard (The Strangers)

Did I miss something? Let me know and I will add to the playlist. Enjoy Halloween! Watch a few scary movies, tell a few scary stories and eat lots of candy.

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