Halloween parties always rock because the guests practically come dressed as decorations. You’ve already started brewing few festive cocktails and lined up the creative party games, but to really set the vibe, you’ll need a goblin-approved playlist, too. We selected 40 awesome songs, ranging from your favorite movie soundtracks to the spookiest radio hits, that you can play at your Halloween bash this October.
Whether they’re about ghosts, witches, or wolves, these crowd pleasers all stay on the (eerie) theme. A mix of dance-able favorites from the likes of Rihanna, Katy Perry, and Lady Gaga plus oldies-but-goodies from Van Halen, Stevie Wonder, and David Bowie will keep everyone at your monster mash busting out moves all night long. Cue up these songs on YouTube or stream them from Amazon Music using your Prime account — we’ve got both options below for the easiest DJ job ever. Just take note: Some of these tracks include explicit lyrics, so maybe save ’em for your adults party and choose a more kid-friendly playlist for celebrating with little ones.
Don’t miss GoodHousekeeping.com’s ultimate Halloween 2019 planning station with more party ideas and tips, plus tons of costume inspiration.
1. “Monster Mash” — Bobby (Boris) Pickett
Yes, you’ve heard it all before. But no, it has not gotten any less catchy.
2. “I Put a Spell On You” — Bette Midler
Disney’s wicked ’90s hit Hocus Pocus features the quirky Sanderson sisters, who wreak havoc on a small town. Bette Midler’s rendition of “I Put a Spell On You” always puts us in the holiday spirit.
3. “Thriller” — Michael Jackson
There’s nothing quite like a posse of zombie back-up dancers. You just can’t resist mimicking all their iconic moves.
4. “Ghostbusters” Theme — Ray Parker Jr.
You won’t be afraid of no ghosts when you’re jamming to this classic.
5. “This Is Halloween” — The Citizens of Halloween
Jack Skellington’s passion for this fright-filled holiday is pretty contagious.
6. “Superstition” — Stevie Wonder
We agree with Stevie Wonder — it doesn’t always pay to be superstitious — but we can still be a little apprehensive about breaking mirrors and crossing black cats on Halloween.
7. “Somebody’s Watching Me” — Rockwell
A couple of eerie lyrics about being followed, punched up with a little ’80s pizzaz, make for one spooky song.
8. “Time Warp” — Little Nell, Patricia Quinn, & Richard O’Brien
A jump to the left and step to the right are the heart and soul behind the cult classic, The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
9. “The Addams Family” Theme — Vic Mizzy
A dismembered hand, a cousin who’s literally hidden by hair — of course we had to include the spookiest family of all time on this list.
10. “Wolves” — Selena Gomez & Marshmello
Selena Gomez starred in the Hotel Transylvania franchises so it’s safe to consider her a Halloween expert.
11. “Dark Horse” — Katy Perry ft. Juicy J
Katy Perry told MTV she wanted this song to have a “witchy, spell-y kind of black magic-y” vibe, and she totally nailed it.
12. “I’m in Love with a Monster” — Fifth Harmony
Grab your other half for this funk-influenced hit. That’s why you dressed up in a couples costume, after all.
13. “Zombie” — The Cranberries
The year: 1995. Your obsession: This Dolores O’Riordan song.
14. “Highway to Hell” — AC/DC
It’s impossible not to dance to this song … especially if you’re planning an ’80s-themed party.
15. “Monster” — Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga’s breakthrough album includes a very appropriately titled track for Halloween.
16. “Runnin’ with the Devil” — Van Halen
“I, myself, am the son of Satan, although my duties here are largely ceremonial,” David Lee Roth once reportedly said. Rock on, man.
17. “Get Ur Freak On” — Missy Elliot
Crazy story: Missy Elliot was actually in the hospital the night before she performed this song at the Super Bowl XLIX Halftime Show. She still killed it of course.
18. “Freaks Come Out at Night” — Whodini
This little ’80s earworm will stay in your head long into November.
19. “She Wolf” — Shakira
It’s impossible not to dance to Shakira — just try.
20. “The Monster” — Eminem ft. Rihanna
Pop singer Bebe Rexha actually wrote the hook for this song that later won a Grammy Award.
21. “Werewolves of London” — Warren Zevon
Place your bets now that someone will start howling along to Warren Zevon’s 1978 rock track.
22. “I Want Candy” — Bow Wow Wow
Bow Wow Wow’s cover of the Strangeloves’ single describes your trick-or-treating sugar rush to a T.
23. “Psycho Killer” — The Talking Heads
New wave band The Talking Heads wrote this scary song from a murderer’s viewpoint, so there’s no denying that the chorus is absolutely killer.
24. “The Purple People Eater” — Sheb Wooley
Fun fact: The 1958 novelty song inspired a movie starring a young Neil Patrick Harris.
25. “Black Widow” — Iggy Azalea ft. Rita Ora
Jump into the 21st century with this more recent hit all about venomous revenge.
26. “Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)” — David Bowie
The 1980 album’s title track gets eerie real fast with lyrics about a woman’s descent into madness.
27. “Disturbia” — Rihanna
Right from the opening scream, Rihanna’s number one hit will get people dancing — and singing along to that crazy catchy hook. Bum-bum-be-dum-bum-bum-be-dum-bum…
28. “Season of the Witch” — Donovan
The hippie vibes of this psychedelic rock may not seem scary, but the song’s appeared in everything from Halloween III to American Horror Story.
29. “Heads Will Roll” — Yeah Yeah Yeahs
The Yeah Yeah Yeahs somehow turned the creepy topic of decapitation into insanely-danceable anthem.
30. “Halloween” Theme — John Carpenter
The slasher movie franchise may include a whopping 11 flicks, but the original soundtrack is undeniably the best. Just cross your fingers that Michael Myers doesn’t show up to the party.
31. “Hungry Like the Wolf” — Duran Duran
This Duran Duran classic is a straight shot to the ’80s, back when MTV played the jungle-themed music video non-stop.
32. “Ghost” — Ella Henderson
You might have caught this recent hit by X Factor contestant Ella Henderson on the radio.
33. “Witchy Woman” — The Eagles
Sure, it’s a classic Eagles track, but the witch-themed lyrics fit the holiday theme.
34. “Midnight City” — M83
This lead single hit it big back in 2011 yet the synth pop track is still the perfect afterdark groove.
35. “Sympathy for the Devil” — The Rolling Stones
Mick Jagger’s satanic-themed anthem made Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, so no worries if you want to put this one on repeat after October 31.
36. “Black Magic Woman” — Fleetwood Mac
This blues-rock hit from 1969 will definitely be replayed all night, but if your friends start acting strange, you should probably switch the song.
37. “True Blood” — Justin Timberlake
Not the HBO series of the same name, but this Justin Timberlake song sounds like someone’s a blood-thirsty vampire.
38. “Spooky” — Dusty Springfield
The name of this song is literally spooky — and it’s all about love. You might remember it from the 2008 romcom How to Lose Friends and Alienate People.
39. “Demons” — Imagine Dragons
Okay, so you might hear this one year-round, but that doesn’t mean a song about demons hiding isn’t perfect for Halloween.
40. “Boogie Monster” — Gnarls Barkley
Is the boogie monster real? Just listen to this creepy song and maybe you’ll find out.