Wednesday Question: Spookiest Song Stories?

What songs have the nastiest back story? Vote for the most frightening song tale here.

Ultimate Guitar

Every song tells a story. Usually they'll be tales of love, triumph or determination - but sometimes they're a little more sinister. To celebrate Halloween, we're looking for songs with a spooky backstory. This week's Wednesday question is:

What song has the scariest back story?

Whether it was written in a creepy haunted house as the Red Hot Chili Peppers did with Rick Rubin, or a song written in mourning about a murdered love one, post your song nominations and stories below. Upvote the stories that you agree are suitably creepy for Halloween, and we'll research the back stories for a spine-chilling top 10 playlist tomorrow. Good luck!

459 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Rammstein - Mein Teil The song is ispired by the case of Armin Meiwes and Bernd Jürgen. A man who willingly agreed to be mutilated, tortured, cooked and eaten. The song by itself is slightly disturbing and the video is also kind of graphic.
    matteo cubano
    "polly" by nirvana. Cobain read "a newspaper article about the abduction, torture and rape in June 1987 of a 14-year-old girl by Gerald Arthur Friend; Friend had picked her up near the Tacoma Dome in his car after she had attended a rock concert. She was able to earn his trust and sympathy by convincing him she enjoyed it. She managed to escape when he stopped for gas. She got out of the vehicle and made a scene attracting attention from surrounding people." According to Krist.
    Pearl Jam - Jeremy
    The KMFDM songs that Dylan Harris and Eric Klebold had lyrics for on their website prior to committing the Columbine Massacre. Son of a Gun, Dogma, Stray Bullet, Waste, Power and Anarchy.
    Hotel California, by the Eagles. The mystery behind it is just so... incredible? I can't even find the right words. It's just mysterious in ways that make it spooky in its own right.
    Nero Galon
    Surprised how long I had to look to find this. Definitely needs to be on the list its a spooky classic.
    Prison Sex - Tool [creepy story, lyrics and video]
    Faap de Oiad - Tool (Very eerie, terrifying song. It at least needs to be mentioned.)
    Jambi has one of the most ****ed/ creepy music videos ever
    Its not an official video. Just an animation that someone uploaded to youtube with. Fits so well though. (same with the pot)
    Slayer-Angel of Death.True story about a real hell.
    Insane doctor in Auschwitz performing a bunch of sick and twisted experiments on innocent people? This should def be at the top of the list.
    NIN - Downward Spiral being recorded in the Sharon Tate house (where the Charles Manson murders occurred)
    matteo cubano
    and of all the songs I'd say hurt would be perfect. the fact it was written there. out of all the darkness, evil and violence that the house experienced, a masterpiece of an album came when it all had ended right before the house was finally demolished. a work of art was the last thing that happened in the house. just like in the darkness, the anger, hate, violence and loud noise through the album we are left with one of the most beautiful songs ever written at the end of it all. Also, the word Pig was written on the front door, it was very faded and painted over, Reznor reportedly claims never to have seen it yet wrote the songs "march of the pigs" and "piggy" where he continues to call the second person subject a pig over and over.
    "La Mer" from The Fragile also had an incredibly dark story considering the surrounding state Reznor was in. Strange cause the song isn't very angry like Somewhat Damaged or depressing like A Warm Place, but yet hearing the little groove is just so haunting and chilling.
    Limousine - Brand New
    Came here solely to post this. Friggen crazy story. I read news articles about the crash after hearing what the song was about to see if it was actually true and some of the articles are more heart wrenching than the song.
    Such a great song. Very chilling and sad, gets me everytime. The buildup in the song is awesome.
    amazing song when i heard it was a true story it was kinda hard to listen to after I found out
    N.I.B - Black Sabbath
    My vote goes to Black Sabbath - Black Sabbath. Legend has it that the first time they played it live, people were leaving the venue in sheer fear of what they just heard. I get chills every time I listen to the song.
    Ozzy made mention of that on the 7 Ages of Rock documentary. Raised the hair on my neck.
    Whats the story behind N.I.B.? I know theres the creepy story behind Black Sabbath with Ozzy getting Geezer a book about witchcraft because he was into that stuff even when the band was still called Earth. After reading it he fell asleep and woke up to see a tall dark figure towering over his bed with piercing eyes staring at him and then the figure disappeared and book was gone too.
    That's the story behind Black Sabbath (the song). NIB is supposedly written to be the same story, but from the dark figure's point of view.
    Oh okay. I suppose that makes sense when you read the lyrics to both of them back to back.
    The song title NIB is derived from a nickname given to Ward from Ozzy. "Nibby" or something like that.
    One - Metallica The music video can bring some pretty scary thoughts.
    mat hazelwood
    mat hazelwood · Oct 30, 2013 06:53 PM
    no he's not, it's written as an adaptation from a movie. These songs are supposed to have a scary story behind being written, not tell a scary story in the song.
    As much of a sellout song Enter Sandman has become, I'd say the same thing about that music video as well
    hurr duurr metolica sold out guyzzzz
    I didn't say metallica sold out, I was just saying that song has become a sellout song in my opinion
    Megadeth - Good Mourning/Black Friday nothing like a Serial Killer "hacking his victims into pieces of meat" I mean it's got born again Christian Mustaine too frightened to play it (along with The Conjuring and Bad Omen from Peace Sells)
    Too many good ones out there to list, Black Sabbath's "Black Sabbath", the use of the tri-tone on the intro is exceptional, Also "Dead Skin Mask" by Slayer that's a pretty good one.
    I think I'll have my vote go to Dead Skin Mask. It's one of the most well known songs about a serial killer and the whole song has a creepy vibe to it. The part with the little kid talking really helps show just how messed up Edward Gein was.
    Ohio Players - Rollercoaster Of Love Story goes that one of the vocal howls in the song are in fact the screams of a woman who'd broken into the studio and was then stabbed to death by the band's manager while the song was being recorded. Utter bollocks of course, but still a cool story.
    Really? i heard it was a model, who was kneeling whilst dripping honey on her self. The honey glued her skin to the plexiglass beneath her, and when she got, she tore the skin off of her legs and screamed in pain. That's just the story i heard.
    There are a few variations. The model bit is meant to be true, but happened before, while they were doing the artwork for the album cover. She was angry at having being hurt so went looking for the manager, who then killed her in the studio.
    Stairway to Heaven , forward or backward, hands down. A friend and I listened to it backward on an old cassette player. We clearly heard, "My sweet Satan, make a path for the glory of Satan." Weeks later I was listening to the same cassette alone in my bedroom. the most wicked laugh I've ever heard came out of the speakers while the intro was playing. Scared the crap out of me.
    I'm noticing that most people here are posting their thought on scary SONGS, but the question was songs with scary back stories. just saying..
    The Hungarian Suicide Song - Gloomy Sunday
    THis song has been band in the uk after 18 peolpe commit suicide after hearing it
    "lavender town" by junichi masuda
    This might be the only instrumental song to get nominated. I really hope someone get's the reference, it's the Pokemon theme music that plays in the town Lavender Town in the original Red and Green Japanese versions that contain a high frequency not found in the US releases. Supposedly it made quite a few Japanese children get sick and commit suicide according to legend (probably not true and it was only children because there are certain pitches that adults can't hear that are extremely high in the song), it features a pretty sinister use of the tritone and the song is downright disturbing, especially those high parts in the middle. The creepiest part is I was showing a friend this one time and while he was listening to it with headphones he had a nosebleed, and he doesn't get nosebleeds often.
    I wasn't expecting to see someone nominate the Lavender Town Theme here, I approve of it though.
    Tried it with headphones to see what effects it would have (I wasn't expecting to be turned suicidal, just pure curiousity), it gave me a seriously bad headache.
    Korn - "Pretty" It's about when Jonathan was working at a mortuary and had to embalm a little girl who had been raped and killed by her father.
    Seriously, you said korn and did not say daddy?!
    Seriously, "Daddy" gives me chills everytime, especially at the end when Jonathan lets it all go. I think it deserves to be on this list.
    When I was a kid I was friggin scared of Careful With That Axe, Eugene by Pink Floyd
    There's the story of an Ouija board causing all kinds of trouble for The Mars Volta while recording Bedlam in Goliath. I'd say that works as a ghastly back story. They actually broke the thing and buried it to get rid of it's 'curse'.
    I was gonna post the same thing, but you beat me to it. The spookiness surrounding that album was crazy and a lot of coincidence. Blake Fleming quitting, Cedric needing surgery, Omar's studio fire, and the album's engineer losing his shit and quitting saying that they were trying to make him and others crazy and that they were doing something bad with the album. Pretty spooky.
    Not the biggest A7X fan, but "Fiction" is unbelievably creepy to listen to. The Rev speaking from beyond the grave...
    matteo cubano
    it was his last track he said that was all he had for the record. i personally think it's a suicide note or he just had a sense death was close. great choice
    So tell everybody/The ones who walk beside me, yeah/I know you'll find your own way/When I'm not with you tonight - That last line always sent chills down my spine. A creepy and beautiful song. A Little Piece Of Heaven was a good thought at first but it's more a demented love story than "creepy".
    matteo cubano
    Purity by Slipknot. "This is based on a true story about a woman who was abducted by a man and his wife. She was tortured, degraded, and confined during the day in a small box no bigger than a coffin for 6 years. The woman became conditioned with "Stockholm Syndrome." This condition sometimes occurs when a person finally gives themselves willing to their captor and believes they are in love with them, or at least understands and accepts their captivity without resistance. " Corey's comments on the lyrics and the story that influenced them: ""Can you imagine a girl being buried in a box and having all this lecherous bulls--t drip down on her from this guy? And thinking that there is hope, because this kid is taking some bizarre note to this guy he doesn't even know - thinking that you are holding on to the shirt of hope - and you wake up and you're dead, you're buried in mud - they find the note about a week later shoved in a library book. It just hurts your head, it's a case of what is good and bad in people. The box alone is reason enough to be like, 'I cant stand to be f--king human.' What is inside of us that is so f--king wrong? He had written quotes from Edgar Allen Poe and lots of f--ked up things on the box.""
    It actually wasn't a true story Corey read it on a fictional crime book or website thinking it was true and when the author found out about the song he he tried taking them to court or something and that's why the song wasn't on the self titled album. they eventually were granted to keep the rights for the song and that's why they could still play it live and put it out on the live album
    matteo cubano
    stairway to heaven. Led Zeppelin 4 altogether. if you look into how Page bought Aleister Crowley's house where he performed his rituals. it was also built where a church had burned down. He wrote stairway to heaven there and Robert Plant suddenly just wrote lyrics that started coming to him. Not to mention all the theories of it having satanic subliminal messages played backwards. It's such an eerie song, and the whole time period in Page's life was so dark that it deserves mention.
    Avenged Sevenfold - a little piece of heaven
    Ryan Withers
    This, it's a creepy song plain and simple. hate the song if you want but this song deserves to make the list in my opinion
    I was thinking this too. I feel like this song is what you would get if Tim Burton and Quentin Tarantino made a movie together and then it was condensed into a song.
    Repost: "Came here to vote for this. That song makes me feel like I'm listening to it in a dark creepy funhouse, and you just know some carnies are watching you... I like it"
    A story behind Mastodon's Crack the Skye album. Brann Dailor, the band's drummer, his mother was a drug addict and his father as an abusive alcoholic. Brann's younger sister, Skye, committed suicide when they were teenagers, and a few weeks later, while tripping on acid, he went to her grave and began to dig it up- no tools, just his hands. Thankfully, he gave up halfway through, and looked up at the sky, and believes he saw Skye's face in the stars. He then returned home, where he discovered his father had beaten his mother and then left the family. Him and his mother became heavy drug addicts together, and were later admitted to a mental institution. After his release, he met his future wife, got clean, and soon after Mastodon was formed.
    Mailman - Soundgarden
    Nirvana's version of 'Where Did You Sleep Last Night?' is pretty eerie >>
    Dead Eye Dick
    4th July by Soundgarden is pretty dark, Pretty sure it's written from Chris experience of doing LSD and thinking the world was ending
    Ballad of Hollis Brown - Bob Dylan
    This should make it in the top 10 for sure, too bad it's posted so low. UG needs to come up with a better voting method
    The Number of the Beast-Iron Maiden. It was about a dream that Steve harris had. That or All Along the Watchtower by Bob Dylan. I've heard it was about him selling his soul to the devil for fame.
    It's a rap song and not spooky as it is horrifying at the end. If you don't want to listen, basically this kid grows up to be a thug, he's getting wasted with his boys when they see a woman walking on the street. Before they can see who she actually is they put her shirt over her head, pin her down and gang rape her. He's about to kill her when he pulls the shirt off her head and realizes it's his own mother. He jumps off a building and kills himself because he feels so guilty and the rest of his gang kills her.
    Alice in Chains "Nutshell", its beautiful but dark at the same time.
    Johnny Cash's cover of Hurt. His wife died not long before he recorded it and his last song I think.
    I put a spell on you- Screamin' Jay Hawkins
    Not sure if UG will like it but Come to Daddy by Aphex Twin is always a good choice for spooky songs.
    This song doesn't tell a scary story, or a story at all for that matter, but this video is legendary.
    Ghost - Elizabeth
    Jeremy-Pearl Jam
    Black Sabbath- Black Sabbath
    Eclectic Lizard
    Opeth's My Arms Your Hearse (the whole album's concept).