Halloween Party Playlist: 15 Spellbinding Songs for Your Bash
Everyone likes a good Halloween party. But everyone loves a Halloween party with a great playlist. We assembled this 15-song Halloween party playlist to keep your guests in good spirits from beginning to end:
1. “Superstition” by Stevie Wonder
Everyone has their little quirks and fears; heights, open water, and hey, we’ve even heard of a fear of cotton balls. You might be a staunch avoider of black cats, open ladders, and mirrors at risk of breaking. It’s okay. Stevie’s crooning is here to get you through.
2. “11th Dimension” by Julian Casablancas
If Julian Casablancas really does live “on the frozen surface of a flaming fireball,” we’d like to know how much rent is on one of those, because this track is too catchy for its own good. This is the perfect starter for a playlist; peppy enough to lure your old college roommates to the dance floor (masks and wigs in tow) as well as the “tardy to the party” crowd.
3. “She-Wolf” by Shakira
Okay, so finding Shakira in your closet would not be the most terrifying thing in the world, but not having this song on your Halloween playlist is definitely scary. It has everything: an infectious hook, a music video with more pelvic thrusting than is deemed safe by most chiropractors, and an excellent use of the word “lycanthropy” (a mental illness where you believe you are a wolf). What else is needed in a song? Nothing. Nothing at all.
4. “Dracula’s Theme” by The Ghouls
A classy tune to provide a soundscape in which you work the room, making your way through goblins, sexy watermelons (yes, this costume exists), and perhaps a simple Charlie Brown-style ghost costume. Serve yourself some witch’s brew, readjust your color-changing contacts, and behold your ghoulish party. By this time hopefully all of your guests will be present, and enjoying the kooky jams on your playlist.
5. “Beg for the Night” by Twin Shadow
A mellow lead-in by Twin Shadow, stage name of George Lewis Jr., a Boston resident. This track comes off his 2012 album Confess, which was inspired by Lewis’s motorcycle accident in Boston a few years prior. If that’s not a dark enough origin for an album, we don’t know what is.
6. “Werewolf Bar Mitzvah (RAC mix)” with Donald Glover, Jeff Richmond, Tracy Morgan, RAC
“Werewolf Bar Mitzvah” is a relatively new Halloween song that is sure to be a classic. Deemed musically interesting enough to merit a RAC remix, the original song by Tracy Morgan and Jeff Richmond (Tina Fey’s husband) from 30 Rock spins a tale that is unlike any other; a Jewish boy’s coming-of-werewolf-age story, when he realizes that while boys become men, men become werewolves. It’s so politically incorrect, but so, so right.
7. “Dracula’s Wedding” by Outkast feat. Kelis
Andre 3000’s Dracula and Kelis’s Bride of Dracula make that creepy person you dated in college seem normal. We’re sure that Dracula’s wedding must have been the wedding to attend in Transylvania, full of batty guests hanging from the ceiling, and the promise of (literal) everlasting love. Not a love song for the masses, but a definite repeat for your party.
8. “I Put a Spell on You” by Creedence Clearwater Revival
The Nina Simone version? Heard it. The original Screamin’ Jay Hawkins version? Yup, that one too. But this Creedence Clearwater Revival cover of the Halloween classic has us thinking of ghost-infested bayous and haunted swamps. We think that’s what John Fogerty was going for, don’t you think?
9. “I Want Candy” by Bow Wow Wow
Okay, so you’re 27 and you still wish you could go trick-or-treating. We understand. This song is the classic battle cry of your candy-mongering youth, and it shouldn’t stop there. Get yourself to some single-family homes in Somerville and reclaim your right to a sugar-high. We won’t judge you.
10. “The Lovecats” by The Cure
All we’re hoping out of this year’s string of Halloween parties is to go to a bash with the aesthetic of what Robert Smith’s daydreams look like. That would be a successful Halloween party, don’t you think? We apologize for the 15-second fish intro to the video above. You’ll never be able to get that visual out of your mind, and we’re deeply sorry for that. Consider yourself spooked.
11. “Get Ur Freak On” by Missy Elliott
We hope we’re not the only ones who are deeply missing Missy Elliot’s presence in the 2010s. We miss her denim-on-denim outfits, signature laugh, and infectious lyrics. Won’t you come back, Missy? In the meanwhile, we’ll extend an invitation to Ms. Elliot to our Halloween bash.
12. “Twilight Zone Theme”
No Halloween playlist is complete without a theme song interlude from The Twilight Zone. It’s not only the source of an amazing theme song, but also an endless amount of costume ideas. Just shellac yourself in white body paint, turn your eyebrows black, don all black-and-white clothing, and you’re a character from one of America’s most beloved TV shows.
13. “Disturbia” by Rihanna
Rihanna is probably the only girl who can pull off the creepy-sexy look. One moment she’s the stylish trendsetter, and the other she’s lurking in the shadows, writhing in an underground lair. How does she do it? We don’t quite know, but she does it well.
14. “Midnight City” by M83
Is it just us or is this song reminiscent of that creepy underground world from The Goonies? Childhood fears of Sloth from the ’80s classic have our skin crawling after listening to this song, but we can’t resist having it on loop this Halloween season. M83’s song is danceable enough to make us forget our five-year-old fears.
15. “Thriller” by Michael Jackson
We can thank pop culture (and that one Jennifer Garner movie) for teaching all of us at least an eight-count of Michael Jackson’s eponymous jam. End your playlist on a high note, arms flexed and feet ready to moonwalk across the floor in your werewolf costume amongst your guests. The King of Pop lives on, long after Halloween festivities end.