Daniel Susco
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Classic and Creepy Tunes for Your Halloween Driving Playlist

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Halloween will be upon us shortly, and one of the best ways to get into the spirit of the holiday is with music. So, while you are driving to get your costume or refill the candy bowl, put these songs on your audio system.


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Halloween classics

“Don’t Fear the Reaper” by Blue Oyster Cult

Blue Oyster Cult’s “Don’t Fear the Reaper” was a hit when it was released, and a mainstay of Halloween ever since. Just make sure you wait all the way through the break in the middle.

“I Put a Spell on You” by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins

Apparently, originally Jalacy “Screamin’ Jay” Hawkins intended the song to be a refined love ballad, but the screaming, creepy version launched Screamin’ Jay into the spotlight.

“Superstition” by Stevie Wonder

No Halloween playlist is complete with Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition.”

“Attack of the Killer Tomatoes”

Halloween is the perfect time for hacky, goofy horror films, and “Attack of the Killer Tomatoes” certainly qualifies.

“This Is Halloween” by The Citizens of Halloween

“The Nightmare Before Christmas” is a holiday-spanning movie that features the music of Danny Elfman at the top of his game.

“Thriller” by Michael Jackson

Even though it was released in 1982, the “Thriller” album remains one of the best-selling of all time.

“Frankenstein” by The Edgar Winter Group

This instrumental is a Halloween classic thanks to its title (though apparently the title came from the fact that the original was very long and needed many cuts before it made it to production).

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Offbeat songs

“Gloomy Sunday” by Heather Nova

The original “Gloomy Sunday” was the work of Hungarian composer Rezso Seress, but is best known as the “Hungarian Suicide Song.” Legend has it that the song led to a rash of suicides in the 1930s, both in Hungary and the United States, and Heather Nova’s rendition is haunting.

“Who Do You Love” by Elise LeGrow

It’s always interesting what happens to upbeat songs when they are set in a different key and slowed down. This acoustic version of Elise LeGrow’s cover of “Who Do You Love” definitely brings out the darker part of the Bo Diddly hit.

“Be My Little Baby” by Snow Hill

Another upbeat song turned creepy, this version of The Ronette’s high-energy pop hit flips the singer’s devotion instantly from sweet to scary.

“Life After Life” by Lauren Kennedy and James Barbour

The musical based on Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” wasn’t exactly a hit in the states, but “Life After Life,” taking place as Dracula brings a woman back from death to expand his dynasty of vampires is an enjoyable change from the typical Halloween tunes.

“A Little Priest” by Angela Lansbury and Len Cariou

More people probably know the Sweeney Todd musical by the Burton-ized movie version starring Alan Rickman, Johnny Depp, and Helena Bonham Carter, but to me the role of Mrs. Lovett will forever be played by Angela Lansbury.

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Daniel Susco is a native of the Dayton-Cincinnati area, and has written on a multitude of subjects. He can discuss Shakespeare, expound on Classical Mythology, and even make witty jokes about Pliny the Elder (More like “Pliny the Rounder,” right?). In his free time, Daniel enjoys reading, cooking, woodworking, and long walks on the beach (just kidding – sunburn is no joke). See more articles by Daniel.