Thriller Over-Session With Vincent Price

 Here is a brief article I've found on an in depth discussion of how Vincent Price was chosen for the rap over-session to wrap-up the finishing touches on Thriller!

 I've included a recording(and the written word) of the rap over-session in acappella with the extra verse included!

On Vincent Price's Thriller Over-Session

 When I begin reminiscing about recording the song “Thriller”, one of the first things that comes to mind is the Vincent Price Rap. Quincy’s wife, Peggy Lipton, knew Vincent Price. So Quincy and Peggy Jones got it together and called him. Vincent said he would love to do it.

 I remember Rod’s idea, at first was that Vincent would just talk some horror talk from the type of lines he would deliver in some of his famous roles.

 Well, the night before the session with Vincent Price, I remember Quincy and Rod on the phone, talking excitedly about something to do with Vincent’s part in “Thriller”. I was getting the track ready for Vincent to overdub on for “Thriller”, so I only overheard bits and pieces of Quincy and Rod’s conversation...

 The next day at about 12:00 noon, Quincy shows up at the studio, looking like the "Cat That Swallowed The Canary!" Q looked at me and said, "'Svensk'(Quincy’s nickname for me...It means-“Swedish Man”, in Swedish.), Vincent Price is going to be here at 2:00 pm! Rod is writing Vincent’s Rap lyrics in the taxicab on the way here to the studio!”

 Quincy told me, “I don’t think that Vincent has ever been on a pop record before. This should be interesting...” I get chills just thinking about it!

 The next thing I knew, Rod came roaring into the control room with several sheets of paper in one hand, and a Marlboro cigarette with a two-inch ash ready to fall over the floor, in his mouth...Out-of-breath, Roddy said to me...“Bruce, quick...He’s here! I saw a car pull up, and it was Vincent Price! He’s on his way in!” He thrust the papers in my hand and said, “Give these to the secretary-Have her photo-copy these quick!”!!!

 This was done, we put the Rap lyrics on the music stand...Vincent walked in, sat down on his chair, off he went, and it was all done in about two hours.

 Vincent Price had never used earphones in his work before. He reluctantly put them on, and when the music track for “Thriller” started, he jumped up from his stool with a very startled look on his face. I know he had never heard anything like that before. He asked Rod Temperton to come out in the studio with him and help him by cuing him where to come in and speak his verses.

 Rod actually wrote three verses for “Thriller”, for Vincent to do. We recorded all three but only used two. I have that unused verse in my tapes somewhere.
Vincent experienced a huge resurgence in his career commensurate with the incredible success of “Thriller”.

 About six months after the release of “Thriller”, Vincent appeared on the “Johnny Carson, Tonight” show. He told about being in Paris and walking down the street and having a group of young people recognize him and chase him down the street to get his autograph.

 To me, the miraculous thing about the Vincent Price ‘Rap” on “Thriller”, is that Rod Temperton wrote a brilliant...Edger Allan Poe style spiel...In the Taxi-cab on the way to the session! When the chips are down, that’s when you find out what true genius is all about!

 Of course, speaking of unquestionable genius...Vincent’s performance was remarkable! Obviously, Vincent Price was in his element on “Thriller”...Timing, inflection...And he did it in two takes! Michael’s vocals’ are more than wonderful as well...What an experience!

This piece was taken from Gear Sluts. A studio recording forum of which he(and a few other Michael Jackson sessionists are a part of.

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Lyrics

Darkness falls across the land
The mid-night hour is close at hand
Creatures crawl in search of blood
To terrorize your neighborhood
And who's whoever shall be found
Without the soul for getting down
You must stand and face the hounds of hell
And rot inside a corpses shell

The demons squeal in sheer delight
Its you they spy so plump so right
For though the groove is hard to beat,
Yet still you stand with frozen feet
You try to run, you try to scream
But no more sun you'll ever see
For evil reaches from the crypt
To crush you with its icy grip

The foul stench is in the air
The funk of forty-thousand years
And grizzly ghouls from every tomb
Are closing in to seal your doom
And though you fight to stay alive
Your body starts to shiver
For no mere mortal can resist
The evil of the Thriller

Can you diggit'
(Evil laughter)

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