Music Mooooooooonday for Halloween begins now!
That was not a typo. A ghost wrote it. Who knew there was such a thing as a…ghostwriter?
Ok, fine, no jokes!
Today kicks off my month-long Music Monday celebration of Halloween, where I’ve selected five spooky songs. Let’s kick off the month with a trip back to 1984.
Picture it: 1984, three parapsychologists are called to the New York City public library to investigate paranormal activity. After losing their jobs at Columbia University, the trio begins a business specializing in the investigation and elimination of ghosts. Ghostbusters, if you will. Then they added a fourth guy to their team. They made a sequel, four funny ladies did a remake, and the original is one of the top comedies of the 1980s (and the second-highest grossing film of 1984).
The similarly-titled theme “Ghostbusters,” by Ray Parker Jr., debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 charts at #68 on June 16, 1984 (eight days after the release of the film), reaching #1 on August 11, 1984 and staying for three weeks.
Ray Parker Jr. was (until 1981) part of a group called Raydio, and after their breakup, went on to a solo career. Including “Ghostbusters,” Parker had six Top 40 hits. As a producer, he contributed his talents to New Edition, Deniece Williams, Diana Ross, Randy Hall, and Cheryl Lynn.
In 1989, Parker wrote the rap song in the second Ghostbusters movie that Run DMC performed (it too was titled “Ghostbusters”).
In 1984, Huey Lewis of Huey Lewis and the News sued Ray Parker Jr., stating that the melody to “Ghostbusters,” infringed on the copyright of their song “I Want A New Drug,” from their 1984 album Sports. The two parties reached a settlement in 1995 (seriously, 11 years later!), banning both parties from revealing any information that wasn’t already made public. In 2001, Parker wound up suing Lewis for breaching that part of the settlement.
I knew there was a lawsuit story behind this song, and now I know the actual story.
Oh, and not to damper the story behind this song any further, something cool – the song was used in the 2016 remake during the opening credits. It was a nice nod to the original film, among other things in that film. Regardless of how people feel about the remake ever happening, it really was a good movie. I highly recommend seeing the extended version, as it actually enhanced the movie and made alot more sense.
Anyway, the music video for the song.
The music video for “Ghostbusters” was directed by the film’s director, Ivan Reitman, and features celebrity cameos by the film’s stars (Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Bill Murray, and Ernie Hudson)m as well as people who did not star in the film – Chevy Chase, Irene Cara, John Candy, Melissa Gilbert, Ollie E. Brown, Jeffrey Tambor, George Wendt, Al Franken, Danny DeVito, Carly Simon, Peter Falk, and Teri Garr.
Fun fact – The film was originally written to include John Candy (he was to be Louis Tully), but Candy would not commit to the project.
So now the music moment you’ve all been waiting for, the video itself. Without further ado, the kickoff of Music Monday’s Halloween songs, Ray Parker Jr.’s “Ghostbusters”!
So much neon lighting and crazy cameos!
Have a great Monday!