11 Spooky Bollywood Songs to Celebrate Halloween
Halloween is all about carving pumpkins, trick or treating, and dressing up hoping to scare.
Children, teenagers, and adults feast on sweets pick their best costumes, and decorate their houses with skeletons, webs, and terrifying objects.
But, Halloween is also an excuse for the family to get together and party.
South Asian households have taken a special liking to the festivities and many embrace the culture of the holiday.
One way to enjoy the festivities, even more, is to pump out themed music, especially for the occasion.
Everyone is familiar with Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ (1982) or Danny Elfman’s ‘This is Halloween’ (2019).
But, what about some Halloween-inspired Bollywood songs? Many probably did not even know there were spooky songs from the famous film industry.
On the contrary, there are numerous tracks that keep up with the tense, creepy, and eerie aura of the event.
Not only do they embody the whole feeling of Halloween, but they’re musically gifted. So, here are the best Bollywood songs to send tingles down the spine.
Legendary Indian playback singer, Mukesh, put down his vocals for the 1953 romantic drama, Aah.
Starring Raj Kapoor and Nargis in lead roles, ‘Raat Andheri’ picturises a lonely Kapoor who ponders on his sadness.
As he wanders the mysterious land of what seems like an abandoned house, he becomes lost in his thoughts and pain.
Mukesh’s vocals do wonders to create a tone that is eerie and ghostly and raises your anxiety to see what happens next.
As a stand-alone track, this is perfect to play at the start or end of the night to round off the Halloween celebrations.
‘Dekhi Zamane Ki Yaari’
Taken from the 1959 film, Kaagaz Ke Phool, ‘Dekhi Zamane Ki Yaari’ is sung gorgeously by the evergreen Mohammed Rafi.
The song has amazing hypnotising qualities that drag you through a mix of emotions. It’s dark, strange and in some ways, supernatural.
Production-wise, the track starts off quite mellow. But, classic Indian instruments produce some Halloween-type screeches that throw you off, but in an artistic way.
One fan, Lopa Bandopadhyaya Bhatnagar commented on YouTube:
” My favorite movie portraying happiness and sadness in the same song. When there is success, there is craving for life.
“And when there is darkness even one’s own shadow leaves the person.”
Lead actor Guru Dutt does fantastically at bringing Rafi’s tone to the big screen and his expressions give off the chills of Halloween.
‘Kahin Deep Jale Kahin Dil’
The nightingale, Lata Mangeshkar, puts down her vocals for this song from the 1962 psychological thriller Bees Saal Baad.
Focusing on actors Biswajeet and Waheeda Rehman in the main roles, the song is so famous for its ghostly tune.
Even before getting into the main body of the track, the listeners shiver at the echoes of Lata’s notes.
In the scene, the vocals ring out as Biswajeet plays the piano, as he looks up, the sound suddenly disappears.
Lata’s spooky vocals and the low octave of the violins create this magnetic piece where you’re tense but don’t want that feeling to stop.
The scary expressions on Biswajeet’s face as he tries to locate these ‘voices’ is horrifying. He and this song truly capture the essence of Halloween.
‘Koi Door Se Aawaaz De Chale Aao’
Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam (1962) produced one of the most chilling Bollywood songs of all time.
‘Koi Door Se Aawaaz De Chale Aao’ focuses on Guru Dutt again as he suddenly awakens in the middle of the night.
Ironically, Guru’s wife, Geeta Dutt sings the song which has him in a trance in the movie. He follows the voice through a huge empty mansion, which already makes you uneasy.
Tender melodies float throughout the walls and Guru is led on a slow and tense chase to discover nothing but pain.
Fans have gone into a frenzy over this song since its release decades ago, with one listener stating “it’s haunting yet beautiful.”
Another person, Pitamber Neog, added:
“The sleep-starved voice mixes exquisitely with the background.”
This track is perfect to play in the background as trick-or-treaters come by to create a nervous vibe.
‘Sau Baar Janam Lenge’
‘Sau Baar Janam Lenge’ from Ustadon Ke Ustad (1963) is sung again by Mohammed Rafi.
His beautiful unearthly voice touches you as the song is picturised on actress Shakila, who plays Nita in the movie.
She nervously looks around, surrounded by frightening winds, crashing waves, and blowing trees.
Shakila’s character is seen with a depressed look as if she is mourning.
Rafi’s vocals are so creative that there’s a sense of death and pain in the track, emotions which are associated with Halloween.
‘Sau Baar Janam Lenge’ keeps you on your toes and you become lost in its tense composition.
‘Jhoom Jhoom Dhalti Raat’
Indian thriller Kohraa (1964) made way for a perfect embodiment of Halloween which is the song ‘Jhoom Jhoom Dhalti Raat’.
Waheeda Rehman and Biswajeet starred in leading roles and brought outstanding performances to the screen.
This track specifically is stylistically so creepy. Waheeda is seen running around a giant house, frightened of each turn and seeing things that aren’t there.
An avid lover for Bollywood music stated on YouTube:
“There is a very real reason why these haunting melodies were exclusively sung by Lata Ji.
“It’s the only voice that is so beautiful and can give you the creeps at the same time!”
One moment specifically, Waheeda enters a room and sees a transparent figure walking towards her.
She panics and tries to run away but gets lost in a cloud of fog as the voice continues to echo.
‘Jhoom Jhoom Dhalti Raat’ gives you goosebumps and the cinematography is genuinely brilliant and haunting!
‘Bindiya Tarse Kajra Barse’
As per the previous comment about Lata Mangeshkar’s voice being so superb for spooky melodies, she returns once again for ‘Bindiya Tarse Kajra Barse’.
Taken from the horror film Phir Wahi Raat (1980) which stars the likes of Rajesh Khanna and Aruna Irani, this track is perfect for Halloween.
The song is set in a ghostly mansion, almost stereotypical of a scary movie, but the loneliness of the house is so tense.
Whilst each character sleeps, the house is haunted by winds, screeches, and Lata’s melodious tone.
The high-pitched and thunderous breaks provide scary hits that scare the actors and the listener.
As the characters are awoken by Lata’s voice, their fear is easy to see and they try to make sense of what is torturing them.
Hall of fame Indian singer, Shreya Ghoshal, offers her vocals for this track which is from the romantic horror, Shaapit (2010).
It focuses on lead actor Aditya Narayan who is tortured by the memory of his lover.
Capturing his sorrow, helplessness, and terror, he waltzes around in the pitch black.
As he searches for answers to how to get away from the sorrow, listeners are met with lightening strikes, anxious runs and terrifying shadows.
Some of the terrifying shots include a mysterious graveyard, foggy woods, and a shadowy figure on the edge of a lake who extends her hand to Aditya at the end.
Shreya’s harmonies touch your soul and her harmonies provide the somber tone you need to celebrate a feisty Halloween.
Singer Tia Bajpai sings this fantastic tune for the supernatural action movie Haunted 3D (2011).
Tia also stars in the movie alongside Mahaakshay Chakraborty and Achint Kaur. The song is delightful and Tia uses her gifted voice to spark feelings of mystery and thrill.
The beat is quite cold, in that it gives off chills and a gloomy tone but that doesn’t take away from its mesmerising sound.
‘Sau Baras’ brings a unique quality where it allows the instrumentation to shine at different parts.
This is especially poignant at the beginning where the piano builds up, giving off a tense vibe that makes you feel like you’re in a haunted house.
‘Sau Baras’ is definitely one to add to the Halloween playlist.
Singer Rekha Bhardwaj and composer Vishal Bhardwaj pair up to sing ‘Lautungi’ from the 2013 supernatural thriller, Ek Thi Daayan.
Its visual aspects are freaky, using hypnotising elements and darkened cinematography, the song makes your spine tingle.
Rekha’s mix of short melodies and abrupt stops gives an edgy aura to the track. You find yourself listening to the lyrics but equally nervous about how the song will unfold.
Tumpy Filmchopath on YouTube commented on ‘Lautungi’, expressing:
“The song is brilliant…the movie is a good one.”
“Good to see folklore seamlessly getting merged into an urban legend kind of story. The movie was creepy indeed.”
What would you do if a spirit starts singing songs for you and promises to come back for you?
‘So Ja So Ja’
Rekha Bhardwaj also sings this chilling and spiritual song from the horror film, Pari (2018).
Starring Anushka Sharma, ‘So Ja So Ja’ starts off in the scariest way.
Using the flow of an old nursery rhyme, Rekha’s voice glides across a haunting melody that uses violins to create an eery ambiance.
Just when you think ‘So Ja So Ja’ can’t get any spookier, the song picturises Anushka finding her way in a mental hospital.
Possessed by voices in her head and anxious energy, she struggles to sleep and can’t escape flitting spirits.
If you want to celebrate Halloween with a bang, then this is the song to go for.
These Halloween-inspired Bollywood songs will give you all the thrills and fear you need for the much-loved holiday.
Whether you celebrate with family or friends, these tracks can cater to anyone and for any time of the night.
Some are easier to listen to, others are harder, but they all manage to embody the feelings around this frightful day. We recommend listening to them…if you dare!