Friday, October 04 2013 00:30


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By 1988, the A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET franchise was a household name. Well on it's way to becoming more "camp" than "scares," the saga of the razor-gloved FREDDY KRUEGER had come a long way since being birthed by director WES CRAVEN back in 1984. With merchandising tie-ins, a 1-900 hotline number, and millions at the box office, it was only a matter of time before the series had a proper musical tie-in by established artists (unlike 1987's horrible FREDDY'S GREATEST HITS by "The Elm Street Group").

Nightmare On My StreetOn January 17, 1988, DJ JAZZY JEFF & THE FRESH PRINCE released "A Nightmare on My Street," an unauthorized homage to the series, featuring the iconic piano hook from the film, and a Freddy impersonator terrorizing the duo throughout the song. Released two years before the 'Prince would haunt BEL-AIR, and nearly a decade before Will Smith became a box office king, the song caught a vengeful eye from New Line Cinema, who demanded a disclaimer be stamped on retail versions of the single denying any affiliation. In addition, it's long been rumored that a video for the song was filmed and banished to hell.

Are You Ready for FreddyOn March 18, 1988, THE FAT BOYS released "Are You Ready For Freddy?," the authorized rap accompaniment to the ELM STREET movies, prompting many to question whether the song was genuinely a pre-planned tie-in to the forthcoming A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 4: THE DREAM MASTER (released in August of that year), or if it was inspired by the unauthorized song that preceded it by three months.

Unlike the Fresh Prince track, The Fat Boys' song featured series star ROBERT ENGLUND as Freddy, rapping throughout, and heavily featured in the music video for the song.

Commercially, DJ JAZZY JEFF and THE FRESH PRINCE won the battle for sales, but which one was the better song? Share your opinions in the comments section below!

Personally? I like them both and still have the original vinyl releases that my parents bought me when I was 12...


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James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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