Previously Unreleased 1983 ‘Ghostbusters’ Theme Song by Hughes/Thrall Gets Released and Reimagined

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

A 1983 demo track of the original Ghostbusters theme song by the musical project Hughes/Thrall—comprised of former Deep Purple bassist and vocalist Glenn Hughes and guitarist Pat Thrall, along with Peter Aykroyd (the late younger brother of Dan Aykroyd)—was released for the first time by Thrall in 2021 and has now received a retro reimagining of the song with a video by a Ghostbusters franchise group.

In 1983, a number of artists were vying to get their song in the film, and Hughes/Thrall and Aykroyd’s pitch was ultimately turned down for the classic Ray Parker Jr. version, which appeared in the 1984 blockbuster film, starring Bill Murray, Harold Ramis, Dan Aykroyd, Ernie Hudson, Rick Moranis, and Sigourney Weaver. 

The Hughes/Thrall song was eventually repurposed as “Dance or Die” for the soundtrack of the 1987 film adaptation of Dragnet—coincidentally also starring Ghostbuster Dan Aykroyd along with Tom Hanks—but their long-lost Ghostbusters theme song left fans searching for the full version for nearly four decades until Thrall uploaded and shared the full demo they pitched for the movie on SoundCloud in 2021.

“This is the demo Hughes/Thrall and Peter Aykroyd pitched for the movie,” wrote Thrall in the description. “It was declined. There has been a version posted on YouTube claiming to be the HT demo but it wasn’t. Here for the first time, it is finally posted. The guy that mixed it had been awake for a week on cocaine. It is one of the worst mixes ever.”

Another unknown song can be heard in the early trailer for the Ghostbusters movie, along with a different Ecto-1 siren, while the Ghostbusters franchise group, Ghostbusters of the Ozarks, have given the track a subtle reimagining, along with a new music video, shot by Eddie Ray Warren with music and vocals by Joshua Warren, lyrics by John Hall.

Check out the new reimagining of the Hughes/Thrall Ghostbusters theme song and video and a look (below) at the original trailer to the 1984 classic film.

(Photo by Fin Costello/Redferns)

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