Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Something Wicked This Way Comes

Today in Music History:

In 1975 Saturday Night Live first airs as a one-hour special, "NBC Saturday Night."
are you skeered?October is about my favorite month of the year. It's getting cooler but not cold yet providing some yummy sleepin' weather, the leaves are turning with many splashes of color, the hockey season starts, and the 31st is Halloween.

More and more as the right wing vocal minority try to control everything, they would have us all believe that Halloween is nothing but a devil worshipping, sin escalating day. It's a harmless day folks and we're not going to hell if we go trick or treating or have a party. It's a fun day. Throughout my years, the very best parties I've ever attended have been Halloween parties. I mean who doesn't love dressing up in some cool ass costume and having a great time. Whenever I dress up I try to come up with the most kick ass costume I can think of.

I do have one bitch about Halloween. Have you ever tried to buy a cd with Halloween music on it? Every single one that's out there always has Monster Mash, Purple People Eater, and I Put a Spell on you. Oooh that's some creepy music. Inspired by this lack of good, really creepy music, most of this month will be spent on looking at some of the creepiest songs out there. Then you can collect these and create your own disc and then when you host that Halloween party, just slip in your Halloween disc and let the creepfest begin. Another good use is to set the speakers in the window come trick or treat night and be known as "that scary house".

This first installment will focus on some film and TV scores. For me the granddaddy of all creepy music is theme music from the movie Halloween. I remember waiting in line at the theater the year Halloween came out and listening to the screams coming from the theater as I waited for the 7 oclock screening to finish. When we were finally let in and the movie started that music chilled me to the bone. The budget for the movie was a micro one, and director John Carpenter managed to save a few bucks by hiring the same composer he'd worked with since his days as a student and struggling indie--himself. The score to this movie was an integral part to it's success as a classic horror movie. If you want to keep the kiddies away from the house on Halloween, just put this song on a loop playing on the front porch and they'll steer clear.

Halloween theme by John Carpenter
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There's no denying that when The Excorcist debuted in 1973 it was one scary ass movie. Christian evangelist Billy Graham claimed an actual demon was living in the celluloid reels of this movie and due to death threats against Linda Blair, Warnerpea soup Bros had body guards protecting her for six months after the film's release. The original teaser trailer, which consisted of nothing but images of the white-faced demon quickly flashing in and out of darkness, was banned in many theaters, as it was deemed "too frightening". Again part of the success has to be given to the music score. The eerie Tubular Bells by Mike Oldfiels really adds a spooky atmosphere. Here are two versions of that song. The remix version has some spooky sound effects added in to make it even creepier. Then I've also included the original.

Tubular Bells Remix
Tubular Bells by Mike Oldfield
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Then there are some other notable flicks with eerie scores. I won't go into a whole lot more detail as the tracks explain themselves. Then for a little lightness between creepiness I've thrown in the theme from The Munsters.

A Nightmare on Elm Street theme
The Omen Theme
The Munsters
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Other notable movie music is the use of Johnny Cash's The Man Comes Around in the Dawn of the Dead remake. Surfin' Dead by The Cramps from Return of the Living Dead and the soundtrack for 28 Days Later. Stay tuned for more treats as homercat ventures out of movies into musical artists.

Funny Toon