Frank Zappa composed the score for this 1962 cult classic written by, directed by and starring Timothy Carey about an unhappy insurance salesman who starts band and eventually becomes a leader of his own cult. From there his downward spiral is inevitable as he's seducing women and going around saying he's God...you can guess it doesn't end well.
Out of the music mecca that is Fort Worth, Texas, Larry and the Blue Notes were best known for this creepily uptempo garage rock song. Two versions were recorded in 1965, neither released because of the fear that the word "sadist" would lessen the chance of airplay. They dubbed the word "phantom" anywhere the evil "s" word occurred in the song and released it as "Night of the Phantom" on Tiris Records later in 1965. Can you believe the word "sadist" used to be considered too offensive for radio? In some ways, I long for that kind of vulnerability.
this brooding number, brought to us by a guy who made a lot of his money
also running prostitutes. He also came across a young
Jimi Hendrix when they were staying the same hotel, who joined his band for a short time.
I like this one! Apparently there is some internet dispute on who actually is singing but to be honest I had never heard this song until right now so I have absolutely no idea on the subject. I am glad I came across this, it's definitely going to show up on the ROCK SEXY Halloween episode next week.
The third installment of the cautionary tale rock set of this series is the great Fats Waller, taking it back to the roaring twenties, and the, well, what did they call the thirties? No matter I suppose, because it was never this fun being warned..."you can go to church on Sunday, you can wash your sins away, but if you're only good on one day..." you get the idea.
Another rare rockabilly tale of caution, in this one a sinner dreams of a fiery train picking up passengers and taking them to hell. When he wakes up he realizes the error of his ways and is ultimately able to make amends before his demise...but it still sounds eerie as hell! Like Freddie and the Hitch-hikers, this 45 is extremely rare. A copy was sold in 2012 for almost $300.
From 1961, possibly the first rock and roll record to feature a theremin? Featured on the Sin Alley compilation, this creepy gem is a warning for those that misbehave. A copy of the original 45 was sold last year on Ebay for $536, making me all the more grateful it has been made available to us via compilations.
Tarantula Ghoul and her Gravediggers - Graveyard Rock
Here's a fun one! Tarantula Ghoul was a TV personality in Portland, the vampy master of ceremonies for KPTV's House of Horror from 1957-1959.Her fans affectionately referred to her as "Taranch."
Suzanne Waldron was her real name.
Sadly there is not any footage of the show that survived, only some articles and a couple recordings of some horror-themed Halloween novelty songs.
According to her son, House of Horrors ended when she got pregnant. She was not married yet and in 1959, it was just not a good thing. She continued to work in commercial and theater though the 1970's. She died in 1982 of cancer, just shy of her 50th birthday.
I wish we had vampy TV hosts now. I'd actually watch TV if Tarantula Ghoul and Vampira (or someone like them) were hosting horror themed TV shows.
No one is quite like Screamin' Jay and no one ever will be. So over the top, so dramatic, so entertaining! The best known version of this song written by Screamin' Jay Hawkins was recorded in 1956. His subsequent performances featured him rising out of coffins, wearing capes and accompanied by a cigarette smoking skull. The video here is from 1990, proving that 34 years later, he still had it raw.
And if you are a 90's child, there's a chance this could have been your first exposure to the song:
Well, I don't know about art but I know what I like...
Ah, The Cramps, it was only a matter of time before they showed up in the 31 Days of Halloween. Another band with a no shortage of Halloween appropriate songs, some might make the argument that almost any of their songs are appropriate for such an occasion. This one is pretty obvious. Here's a cool video out there from a 1983 performance at St. Andrew's Hall in Detroit (I saw Turbonegro in that venue a mere 20 years later) doing the song that boasts "even the devil gets dizzy at the stuff I dig" and "I'll be a-surfin' in your blood on a Saturday night."
There's plenty of Roky material that's appropriate for Halloween, many from the record "The Evil One," surprise surprise. Though himself not evil (good bad, he's not evil) he was subjected to mistreatment at a Texas mental hospital in the late 1960's and early 70's that caused many problems for him. If it weren't for the fact that his brother took over his guardianship in 2001 this story might have been much more sad, but Roky still tours to this day. Check out this documentary if you want the whole story.
Here's an eerie ditty I learned about last year when compiling Part One of my third annual ROCK SEXY HALLOWEEN episode. Nothing gives me the chills like these primitive, early-mid century songs that could have been out of the stone age for all we know. Let alone I have a beautiful spider with the most magnificent web living outside my porch door at this very moment. October!
While we're on the subject of wolves I thought I'd pull this one out of the box. Sure, it's not a "Halloween" song per say, but it does talk about wolves, or their calls, anyway. And wolves are for Halloween. Plus the song is a top choice, prime rib sexy-saxy groover. Besides "wolf call" sounds much cooler than "cat call" any time of the year.
Here's a classic Halloween song! Stay stay away when the ghosts and the goblins play, advice I could certainly heed every now and then. This one's a nice rockabilly horror bop to get you in the mood. Innocent fun with ghosts, goblins, witches, zombies, Mr. Halloween himself, and many others - this is what Halloween is all about!
be posting some of my favorite Halloween-ish songs every day for the
month of October, also known as Rocktober. I am technically 50 minutes
late for October 1st, in the eastern time zone anyway, but I stay up
late so it still counts. I hope you enjoy the selections to come this
month! I'll also be posting them on my Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter pages.
31 Days of Halloween
BO DIDDLEY - The Mummy Walk
Hmm, so I am trying to figure out what the Mummy Walk is a euphemism for. Is it that obvious?