Spooky Music from the Past

A list of 10 Halloween-themed songs from the early to mid 20th Century

Everyone knows classic Halloween songs like The Monster Mash, Ghostbusters, and Thriller… but what did people listen to to get them in a spooky mood between 1920 and 1960?

Here’s a list of 10 oldies but ghoulies that no doubt scared your grandparents and great-grandparents.

1. Bessie Smith – Haunted House Blues

Recorded in 1924

Favorite Line – “I’m scared to stay here, I’m scared to leave this town, But a feeling just tells me to burn this house on down, Tear this house on down.”

2. Jack Hylton – Bogie Wail

Recorded in 1929

Favorite Line – “When you’re on your own alone at night, Here it comes, nearer yet it comes. Fillin’ every marrow-bone with fright.”

3. Borah Minnevitch & The Harmonica Rascals – The Ghost Walk

Recorded in 1933

Favorite Line – Instrumental

4. The Prairie Ramblers – Ghost in the Graveyard

Recorded in 1935

Favorite Line – “Now I couldn’t stand there, I didn’t like them cats you should know that, And I didn’t like them ghosts either so I looked down at my feet and I said feet come on now, And do your duty and carry me on home.”

5. Smiley Burnette – Minnie the Moocher at the Morgue

Recorded in 1935

Favorite Line – “Now layin’ right over there on that long stretcher, Why, that’s poor Bowery Bob who run the cabaret. He tried to beat a rap by turnin’ squealer, Somebody bumped him off yesterday.”

6. The Five Jones Boys – Mr. Ghost goes to Town

Recorded in 1937

Favorite Line – “He’s feeling great and he can’t be late. He’s got a date to do a little stepping. He’ll shake his bones to hot saxophones, ‘Cause Mr. Ghost is going to town.”

7. Artie Shaw – Nightmare

Recorded in 1938

Favorite Line – Instrumental

8. Kay Starr – The Headless Horseman

Recorded in 1948

Favorite Line – “There’s ghosts with horns and saucer eyes, some have fangs about this size. Some short and fat, some tall and thin and some don’t even bother to wear their skin.”

9. Bing Crosby and the Andrews Sisters – The Yodeling Ghost

Recorded in 1951

Favorite Line – “He disappeared in the snows and every villager knows, he yodels and yodels and yodels and yodels to taunt her.”

10. The Duke Ellington Orchestra – Night Creature

Recorded in 1963

Favorite Line – Instrumental

Are there any of your old favorites we might have missed? Let us know in the comments below.

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