in Obsessong

I love Halloween. Something about the idea of ghouls and ghosts being embraced on a national level just sends shivers down my prickly spine. Which is why I’ve always wondered why there aren’t more Halloween songs? There’s got to be dozens of classic Christmas songs. It’s not like there’s not a great wealth of material to draw from; vampires, jack-o-lanterns, candy, the possibilities are endless. Then again, does the world need anymore when you already have the spooky classic that is “Monster Mash”?

Song: “Monster “Mash by Bobby “Boris” Pickett and the Crypt-Kickers
Album: Is The Original Monster Mash
Year: 1962
Written By: Bobby Pickett and Leonard L. Capizzi

My Relationship With This Song

No, I can’t recall a particular moment where I heard this for the first time but it was definitely a part of my childhood. Not only did I grow up around oldies radio but I grew up around monsters. My dad loved Halloween, we went all out with decorations, he painted monster models, made masks and costumes, and exposed me to all the great Universal Monsters at a young age. An appreciation of the classic monsters is essential in loving this song. Especially when Bobby “Boris” Pickett is doing an impression of legendary horror-meister Boris Karloff.

Reasons Why I Love This Song

Sense of Humor: Werewolves, Dracula, Frankenstein, Igor, all in one song? And what are they doing? Dancing? The fact that all of the most feared monsters would come together to have a party. How could I resist something so silly yet so imaginative?

Atmosphere:  “Monster Mash” is a good song but it’s the extra touches that make it a great a song. Opening with bubbling and chain sound FX sets the stage for something different and the monster sounds by Pickett truly bring the song to life. It’s like I’m there man!

Timeless: I’ve always felt the era of sock hops and malt-shops had a timeless feel to it. Dance songs like “Do You Love Me” by the Contours or Chubby Checker’s “Do the Twist” were so of the era, they are like pitch perfect time capsules. “Monster Mash” is another one of those but is also about monsters. It’s a timeless oddity that remains popular for a multitude of reasons.

Vocals: Pickett’s vocals have so much charm and enthusiasm, he really went all out. It would have been easy to sing the song straight but he opted for an accented take on Karloff. Ultimately, it paid off as “Monster Mash” became a #1 hit in 1962. Too bad he never saw success with any other tune.

Why I Will Continue To Love This Song

“Monster Mash” is a Halloween song that I like to hear around Halloween time, so I’ll never wear it out any other time of year. Since Halloween will always be around there’s no reason to believe this song won’t always be around. Halloween is my favorite holiday and what’s my favorite holiday without its anthem?