Day One: “No More Nightmares” – Dead When I Found Her
Day Two: “Stalker” – Numb
Day Three: “Corpses (A Zombie love Song)” – God Module
Day Four: “The Killing Moon” – Echo and the Bunnymen
Day Five: “Alfadhirhaiti” – Heilung
Day Six (sixty-six): “Gallowdance” – Lebanon Hanover
Day Seven: “Nite Rite” – Ash Code
Day Eight: “Kasvetli Kutlama” – She Past Away
Day Nine: “Wicked Woman” – Coven
Day Ten: “Worn Skin” – Bestial Mouths
Day Eleven: “Ed Gein” – Killdozer
Day Twelve: “Laurie (Strange Things Happen)” – Dickie Lee
Day Thirteen: “Black Ju Ju” – The Skeletal Family
Day Fourteen: “Pet Sematary” – Helalyn Flowers
Day Fifteen: “The Devil’s Ball” – Maurice Burkhart
Day Sixteen: “Burn Witch Burn” – Ego Likeness
Day Seventeen: “Long Black Veil” – The Chieftains and Mick Jagger
Day Eighteen: “The Ravens Fly” – Kevorkian Death Cycle
Day Nineteen: “A Witch Stole Sam” – Mark Korvan
Which brings us to a song a never fail to include on my Halloween comps: “Teddy” by RazorBladeKisses
Once, while visiting the Tower of London I had my path blocked by one of the ravens who reside there. It wasn’t going to give up an inch of ground and I – knowing that a raven can, and will, bite off your finger – wasn’t going to force the issue.
There’s creepy, and then there’s The Chieftains and Mick Jagger covering an Appalachian Murder Ballad creepy. Everybody from Johnny Cast to nick Cave has covered “The Long Black Veil”, but this is my favorite version
Now seems like a good point in this experiment to mention Dracula’s Ball. It’s the event around which the entire (Philadelphia) year revolves. This Halloween it’ll feature Clan of Xymox and my good friends Ego Likeness (whom I first saw at Dracula’s Ball roughly 15 years ago).
Fittingly, here’s Ego Likeness with a very Halloween-appropriate song.
Phun Philly Phact: Facebook, which sold our info to actual Nazis (not Grammar Nazis nor Soup Nazis) took the moral highground and banned this video for Dracula’s Ball.
Old-timey Halloween was the stuff of nightmares. Maybe it was the unchecked waves of vandalism, or the fact that EVERYBODY was higher than Elvis on a return trip from the pharmacy, or because the only costume available to young women was Sexy Typhoid Victim.
While I can’t provide you with a satisfactory explanation, I can provide you with this gem from 1913…
look, people; I love the Ramones as much as you do. The were true originals and I probably wouldn’t be a musician today if had never donned leather jackets and shouted “1,2,3,4!”. That said, some of their later work seemed kind of rushed (maybe the had an instinctual sense that they weren’t long for this world). For example, Dee Dee didn’t even show up for the recording of “Pet Sematary” (which he wrote); the producer played bass on it and added the synth later. Maybe if the Ramones had been allowed a little more time to craft the song, they would’ve ended up with something akin to Helalyn Flowers‘ cover version – which I think really captures the spirit of the tune.
Fun fact: When my father was young, the sound of an air raid siren would cause him to have a nose bleed. This was shortly after WWII – and at the dawn of Cold War. Dad’s no fool; he knew what those sirens meant. In an effort to provide my father with the best possible medical treatment that they could afford, my grandparents sent for a Pow Wow Man. Rural Pennsylvania is creepy as shit, folks.
This brings us to entry number Lucky 13 on our count-up, The Skeletal Family with “Black Ju Ju”.
From the haunted year of 1965, here’s Dickie Lee with “Laurie (Strange Things Happen)”
Last night at the dance I met Laurie,
So lovely and warm, an angel of a girl.
Last night I fell in love with Laurie –
Strange things happen in this world.
As I walked her home,
She said it was her birthday.
I pulled her close and said
“Will I see you anymore?”
Then suddenly she asked for my sweater
And said that she was very, very cold.
I kissed her goodnight
At her door and started home,
Then thought about my sweater
And went right back instead.
I knocked at her door and a man appeared.
I told why I’d come, then he said:
“You’re wrong, son.
You weren’t with my daughter.
How can you be so cruel
To come to me this way?
My Laurie left this world on her birthday –
She died a year ago today.”
A strange force drew me to the graveyard.
I stood in the dark,
I saw the shadows wave,
And then I looked and saw my sweater
Lyin’ there upon her grave.
Strange things happen in this world.