Treva is a pop culture fan who has been writing about the entertainment world for over a decade.
The season of the witch is upon us, and while most of us won’t spend our cool fall nights hanging out in the dark woods and casting spells, we can show our appreciation for Wiccan culture by listening to some of the best songs about witches and witchcraft. Not all of the songs here specifically mention witches, but they’re the perfect tunes to listen to while you spend a spooky evening sipping on a pumpkin spice latte and researching dark magic.
You might also consider casting a spell over your Halloween party guests by rocking a bewitching dress and adding magical songs like those listed here to the playlist for your All Hallows’ Eve gathering.
1. "Season of the Witch" by Donovan
Here's one of the grooviest songs for witches who aren't all that into black magic. This ‘60s joint also gives me a great idea for a Halloween costume that will stand out from the other cliché witches wandering around this October: a psychedelic sorceress who uses her spells to spread peace and love.
If you’re a fan of this tune, you might also want to check out the cover that Lana Del Rey recorded for Guillermo del Toro’s upcoming movie Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark.
2. "Wild Witch Lady" by Donovan
This lesser known song by Donovan is just as good as the one above. It’s about a witch of the voodoo variety, and she’s one scary practitioner of the dark arts. According to the lyrics, the “wild witch lady” has poison lipstick and acid saliva. She also eats boys for breakfast and will “suck up all your insides.”
However, the magical madwoman possesses the ability to make an old man young, so you might want to risk asking her to give you a potion that will shave off a few years. Just make sure you don’t visit her around dinnertime, and avoid kissing her at all costs.
3. “Witch” by The Bird and the Bee
How can I not include a song on this list that begins with the line, “Yes, I am a witch?” This indie group’s charming tune is about a broken love spell, but you'll find that it's difficult to break the spell that it casts over you; you'll be cursed to hear it in your head over and over again all day -- but in the best way. One of my favorite lyrics is this:
“How could I haunt you, keep you close/ When you can see my seams, the fraying of my dress? I am defenseless.”
4. "Strange Brew" by Cream
Here's a slow, sensual song that's perfect to listen to while you share a mug of strange brew with a sexy sorceress. It’s also another of the best classic rock songs about witches and witchcraft for casting a psychedelic spell over your Halloween party guests.
5. "Witchy Woman" by The Eagles
This classic rock favorite warns unwary men to watch out for raven-haired, ruby-lipped women who might just work a little black magic on them using their sparking fingertips. Unfortunately, it’s hard to resist a girl with the moon in her eyes, so here’s a word of caution for men who fall under the spell of witchy women: Keep them away from silver spoons.
6. “Black Magic” by Magic Wands
This intense tune by a dream pop group with a magical name will have you waving your wand around out on the dance floor. It’s exactly the type of song that a magically-blessed hipster would listen to if they were sorted into Slytherin.
This song might be pretty obscure, but it did earn the honor of being featured in a 2013 episode of Witches of East End.
7. "Black Magic Woman" by Santana
There's no shortage of sexy songs about witches, but this is one of the best. Carlos Santana's amazing guitar work is just as bewitching as any witches' brew, but while you're swaying your hips along to this seductive song, you best beware; it might make a devil out of you.
8. “Beloved Enchantress” by The Moon and The Nightspirit
If you’re looking for songs with a witchy vibe that transport you to another time and place, get lost in the enchanting violin music and ethereal vocals of this Hungarian folk music duo.
I like to think that this mystical song is about witches trying to summon a moon goddess so that she may grant them her ancient wisdom.
9. “Which Witch” by Florence and the Machine
Florence Welch used to tell people that she was a practicing witch. The wide-eyed enchantress eventually gave up witchcraft, but her coven’s loss was the music world’s gain. She took the energy that she was presumably putting into casting spells and put it into making music instead, and traces of her mystical past can still be heard in songs like this one.
10. “And He Slayed Her” by Liz Phair
This revenge fantasy will bring you back to the ‘90s, when female musicians were making waves with empowering tunes that weren’t just about falling in love and pining over men. It’s a fitting feeling for a song on this list, because witches are all about female camaraderie and girl power. And if we learned anything from The Craft, it's that witchcraft is the best way to get revenge.
This song is about Liz’s anger over the actions of a record company CEO, and it includes the line, “Ding dong, the witch is dead.” However, instead of taking him down with a spell or a magic potion, she threatens to drive a stake through his heart like he’s a vampire. She gets her happy ending when he’s chased by an angry mob with pitchforks and must spend eternity in Hell.
11. "I Put a Spell on You" by Screamin' Jay Hawkins
Here's a friendly reminder that guys can sing great witch songs, too. Words just can't describe Screamin' Jay's otherworldly voice, and you might be convinced that the possessive voodoo king really is capable of some black magic after listening to this spooky and strange song. It will chill you down to the bone, and it’s definitely a must-have for your Halloween party playlist.
12. "Witchcraft" by Robert Smith
This Frank Sinatra standard has been covered many times, and while Robert Smith might not be a smooth sorcerer like Sinatra, I think that The Cure frontman’s cover is the most magical rendition of the enchanting tune. It’s a bit wacky and weird, which made it the perfect fit for Tim Burton’s Frankenweenie remake.
13. “Rhiannon” by Fleetwood Mac
You can’t have a list of witchy songs without including a few Stevie Nicks tunes; after all, she did play a witch on American Horror Story. There have long been rumors that Nicks is a practicing witch, and they were partially inspired by this song. The free-spirited Fleetwood Mac frontwoman used to tell crowds at concerts that “Rhiannon” was about a witch, even though it was really based on a book about a powerful goddess.
It’s certainly easy to think of Rhiannon as witch, thanks to her titular tune's mystical imagery. She's described as “a woman taken by the wind” who can fly, and there’s even a reference to everyone’s favorite witch familiar, a cat creeping around in the darkness.
14. “Special Death” by Mirah
Speaking of American Horror Story, this haunting song was featured in the first season of the anthology series. The story that it tells is ambiguous, but it begins with the line, “A terrible mistake was made.” I like to think of this as referring to the execution of a witch. It also ends with a line about casting a stone in water, and witches are associated with both stones and water. During the dark days of the Salem Witch Trials, some of those suspected of practicing witchcraft were tied up and thrown into rivers with rocks to weigh them down. If they drowned, the thinking was that this proved their innocence. A “Special Death,” indeed.
15. “Witch’s Wand” by Sloan
This upbeat tune takes an accusation of witchcraft and turns it into a playful but imperfect love story about a girl and a boy. The male singer reminisces about how his enchantress cast a spell over him with by waving her “witch’s wand.” Unfortunately, things go sour, and he later refers to her magical device used to entice as a “wicked witch’s wand.”
This is the perfect song to add to a witchy playlist that needs a few sprightly songs to make it a little less somber and spooky.
16. “The Witch” by the Sonics
This ‘60s rock group had a punk sound before the genre existed, so maybe they asked a witch to consult her crystal ball about the future of music. If this is the case, she didn’t leave a great impression on the influential band; their witch is an “evil chick” who will “make you itch.”
17. “Sylvan” by Esben and the Witch
Here’s a wondrous witchy song from the only group on this list with the word “Witch” in its name. Its trance-inducing drums and lyrics describing a forest straight out of a dark fairy tale will transport you far away, so witches who don’t reside anywhere near natural settings will love this one. The ethereal voice of singer Rachel Davies also adds to the allure of this entrancing tune.
18. “Fainting Spells” by Crystal Castles
I couldn’t create a list of witch songs without at least a few “witch house” tunes. A fainting spell isn’t exactly a magic spell, but this song’s sinister syth music might make you feel like a powerful hex has been put on your ears -- in a good way.
19. “Burn the Witch” by Queens of The Stone Age
Burning suspected witches was another popular way to kill them, as this song reminds us. It’s one of the many listed here inspired by the Salem Witch Trials, but to me it sounds more like it’s about keeping an extremely dark secret than murdering black magic practitioners.
20. “Carrion Flowers” by Chelsea Wolfe
Chelsea Wolfe’s haunting voice might just help you get in the perfect trance-like state to cast a spell. It sounds like Wolfe is reciting a rather dark incantation in this macabre song, or maybe she’s creating a terrible curse.
I absolutely love the creepy title of this song, and carrion flowers definitely sound like potion ingredients that all skilled sorceresses must keep stocked in their cupboards.
21. "That Old Black Magic" by Ella Fitzgerald
Here's one of the best old school songs about witchcraft, a classic that's perfect for cool cats to dedicate to their black magic babes this Halloween.
22. “Waking the Witch” by Kate Bush
This eerie song is sympathetic to the many women who have been accused of practicing witchcraft over the centuries. It begins with a medley of kind-sounding voices telling a witch to “wake up.” These “visitors,” as Kate calls them, are trying to save the witch from drowning during her trial by water.
It’s not the accused practitioner of the occult that is evil; it’s those who are trying her as guilty, including the judge with a guttural satanic voice questioning her innocence and telling her to confess. It’s a somewhat unsettling, but this is certainly one of the most unique songs about witches that you’ll ever hear.
23. “Wicked Annabella” by The Kinks
This classic rock song about the occult definitely isn’t sympathetic to its accused witch. “Wicked Annabella” is criticized for her “sinful ways,” and listeners are warned that she’s the master of a score of little wood-dwelling demons that she has enslaved.
If you’re looking for songs that paint witches and witchcraft in a more positive light, you may want to skip this one. However, if you’re simply looking for something spooky to play at a Halloween party, this one is a must-have addition to your playlist.
24. “A Little Wicked” by Valerie Broussard
If you’re looking for great witch music, you might want to listen to all of the songs played on the Netflix series Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. This tune is one of the many awesome tracks featured on Season 1 of the show, and witches who aren’t completely wicked will be enchanted by the sultry voice of songstress Valerie Brossard. She might describe herself as being slightly sinister, but she sounds heavenly.
25. “Cupid Carries a Gun” by Marilyn Manson
I’m not sure what witch drums are, but Marilyn Manson makes them sound truly terrifying. While calling for said drums to be pounded for him, he warns listeners that they “better pray for hell, not hallelujah.”
“Cupid Carries a Gun” serves as the title song for the WGN series Salem, a must-see show for witch enthusiasts.
26. “Wild Woman” by Sleep Machine
Witches who long to be out running in the woods at night will enjoy this spirited song that describes racing alongside wolves under the moon and dancing with demons. It also warns listens that there’s “no fury like a woman’s soul awoken from the blackest night.”
27. “Burn the Witch” by Radiohead
The frenetic music of this song might make you feel like you’re having a “low flying panic attack,” or like you’re a witch on trial who is running out of time.
It doesn’t really sound eerie or mysterious, but it includes some truly haunting lyrics, including the opening lines, “Stay in the shadows / Cheer at the gallows / This is a round up.” It also paints a picture of a frightening world for accused witches, with imagery that includes red crosses painted on doors and this ominous threat: “We know where you live.”
28. "Witch" by The Cult
You have to play this sexy song with a bewitching beat for all the babes decked out in their skimpiest sorceress wear this Halloween. Mortal men, watch out for the sex-crazed witches coming for you.
29. “Sticks and Stones” by The Pierces
The Pierces turn a childish chant into something a bit frightening in this fast-paced toe-tapper. The sinister singer describes herself as knowing a witch’s spell “that might just blow your top,” and she’s so scary that she’ll make you fear that she “might suck your blood” if you ever find yourself alone with her.
30. “The Killing Moon” by Echo and the Bunnymen
This song doesn’t mention witchcraft, but it does describe a mysterious woman with lips that are “a magic world.” The singer first sees her standing underneath a blue moon, and he tells her that a mysterious unnamed male “will wait until you give yourself to him.” Is it possible that he’s singing about a witch who is at risk because Satan wants to possess her soul? Maybe not, but this is the story I conjured up when I listened to the lyrics.
31. “Sisters of the Moon” by Fleetwood Mac
Stevie Nicks has said that this song “makes no sense” and that she has no clue “what the hell this song is about,” but how can it not be about witches? She describes a woman wearing black robes who calls to her and asks her to be her sister of the moon. To me, it sounds like a witch trying to recruit a new coven member.
32. “Spellbound” by Siouxsie and the Banshees
This list had to include a song by the original goth girls, and this is one of their witchiest. It describes creepy laughter “cracking through the walls” and being entranced by “the footsteps of a rag doll dance.” However, these are my favorite lyrics:
“And don't forget / When your elders forget / To say their prayers / Take 'em by the legs / And throw 'em down the stairs.”
33. “Witches Song” by Marianne Faithfull
Speaking of goth girls, this song was featured on the soundtrack of The Craft, which would become the goth Bible for ‘90s chicks who longed for witchcraft to work like it does in the movie. It describes meeting on a hilltop to form a circle, hold hands, and chant. The song's cheery music belies its black magic inspiration, and it begins with this witchy line:
“Shall I see you tonight, sister, bathed in magic greet?”
34. "The Witch's Promise" by Jethro Tull
This folksy tune is one of few songs about sorcery that's full of fantastic flute work. The members of Jethro Tull were true storytellers, and you've got to love the magical way these minstrels portray this mystical tale that starts with a kiss from a witch in the wood.
35. “Witch Hunt” by Rush
I don’t think Geddy Lee’s distinctive voice is all that suited for a spooky song like this, but the beginning of this one is so spine-tingling and sinister; it opens with a group of men pronouncing someone “guilty” as a cacophony of bells chime and foreboding music begins playing in the background. I also love these opening lines:
“The night is black, without a moon / The air is thick and still / The vigilantes gather on / The lonely torchlit hill.”
36. “Black Magic” by Little Mix
Most of the songs here are dark and eerie, but witchcraft doesn’t have to be so serious; it can also be fun. British pop group Little Mix proves this with their infectious bop about using a secret potion to get a boy down on knees. Now if they’d only share their recipe for black magic.
37. “Full Moon Tonight” by Silvastone featuring Bell Saint
Witches can celebrate their favorite celestial body with this creepy tune that’s a must for every Halloween party playlist. It warns that the full moon doesn’t just attract witches; you also have to watch out for the ghouls, creeps, ghosts, goblins, and reapers that lurk out of the shadows when that silver orb in the sky is fully illuminated.
38. “Devil Woman” by Cliff Richard
Witches have long been accused of consorting with the devil and his creatures, which has given them a bad rap. This song fully embraces that cliche, but who cares? Cliff Richard might be warning listeners away from devil women, but instead he makes Satan’s female followers sound pretty awesome; his witches are seductive enchantresses, not old hags with warts on their chins.
39. “Belispeak” by Purity Ring
Many Purity Ring songs feature witchy lyrics, but I like this one best because the unsettling lyrics are accompanied by dark music that wouldn’t be out of place in a horror movie. It also describes strange rituals that feel like witchcraft, including hemming a skirt in salt and vinegar and “drilling little holes” in eyelids to see visions at night.
The meanings of Purity Ring songs are ambiguous and impossible to decipher, but I like to think that this is one is about a young witch who is imploring her deceased grandmother for help as she tries to learn the dark arts. I love this line describing a supernatural experience that seems like something that might happen to a witch as she comes into her powers:
“Grandma, there's air beneath my bed / And it whispers, and it whispers when I rest.”
40. “Red Trails” by Fever Ray
Fever Ray is another group that has produced multiple songs with witchy vibes. You can’t help but picture a witch when you hear Swedish singer Karin Elisabeth Dreijer‘s voice, and the wailing violins in this song create a haunting, otherworldly atmosphere where spells are used to set snow on fire.
The most memorable lyric to me has to be, “Blood was our favorite paint.” The red stuff does seem like the ideal medium for an artistic witch.
So from ghoulishly groovy witch tunes to otherworldly beats and seductive songs that will cast a spell on your Halloween party crowd, there's sure to be some music here that will appeal to witch fans of all kinds.