Halloween Countdown – 31 Scary Moments – Oct. 15
Rockwell enlists the help of the King of Pop to tell a creepy story about somebody watching them.
October officially marks the beginning of Scary Season. With this in mind, the Pepper Bough is celebrating with a daily dose of creepy moments sure to make your hairs stand on end. Come celebrate with us . . . if you dare.
Just like Christmas, what makes Halloween so special are all the songs. Nothing gets you feeling creepy faster than a few minor notes played at just the right tempo, or with just the right amount of menace.
Possibly the scariest song ever recorded is Rockwell’s 1984 paranoid thriller, “Somebody’s Watching Me.” It was written by 18-year old Kennedy William Gordy, the son of Motown Records founder, Berry Gordy. Because of his fears of being accused of using nepotism to get opportunities in the record industry, the young Gordy changed his name to Rockwell and set about producing the song he had written about that awful paranoid feeling one gets when they feel unseen eyes crawling all over them.
The origin of the song, according to “Rolling Stone,” came when Rockwell found himself thinking back to his childhood days when he noticed his neighbors looking up at his family’s apartment from the their windows, trying to see what the famous Berry Gordy was up to.
To produce the song, Rockwell enlisted two performers who were no strangers to the Motown world—Michael Jackson and his brother, Jermaine. Michael, a child star and fresh off the global success of his 1982 album “Thriller,” could relate to the themes of Rockwell’s song. He had his own stalkers, after all. On the song, “Billie Jean,” Michael used one of his most infectious grooves to tell the story of a fan who accused him of being the father of an illegitimate child.
All this gives Rockwell’s creepy classic an authentic feel that adds extra chills to those provided by that wicked beat.