Eurogamer meets Ray Parker Jr. • Page 2

Bustin' makes him feel good.

Judy: Games like Guitar Hero and Rock Band obviously offer another revenue stream for musicians. Would you like to see your songs in those games?

Ray Parker Jr.: We were just talking about that, we're working on it now. I think they should have Ghostbusters in Rock Band.

Judy: Bobby Brown did the song for the second Ghostbusters film. I don't think it has quite the same legendary status as your record...

Ray Parker Jr.: Can you sing it?

Judy: Umm... 'If it's urrp to urrse we've gaad to make it hap-pennn...'

Ray Parker Jr.: That's pretty good. You're the only one I know who can sing it. I like the song. I'm not saying it's a bad song. I'm just saying, it's not the same... 25 years later.

Judy: The first time you heard It's Urp to Urse, did you think, 'Well, this song isn't as good as mine'?

Ray Parker Jr.: I thought, 'No way is this going to replace my song as the Ghostbusters song.' I thought it was a nice song. I like the song.

Richard: Why didn't they come to you for Ghostbusters 2?

Ray Parker Jr.: Because I made too much money on Ghostbusters 1.

Richard: Would you not even pick up the phone?

Judy: It was too heavy, it was made of solid gold.

Richard: Neon.

Ray Parker Jr.: No, that's not true. I think certain executive parties were upset with me. People kept writing in the newspaper that the song made the film, and I think it made some people crazy.

We sold over 10 million records immediately, even before the movie came out. Then I got nominated for an Oscar and the movie didn't. I won a BAFTA and the movie didn't. I don't know where the resentment came from, but there was a lot of emotion.

Richard: You'd think they'd be pleased - surely it's all good for the movie?

Ray Parker Jr.: You're trying to be logical. Hollywood doesn't work that way.

I would love to work on Ghostbusters 3, I hope they do call me. But if they don't call me, I won't be surprised.

Richard: Who are they going to call?

Ray Parker Jr.: They could call Beyonce, or they could call Britney Spears... Let me put it to you this way: there was a point where the company asked me to return some of the money.

We would imagine. Allegedly.


Get out of town.

Ray Parker Jr.: What would you have done?

Richard: "I'll tell you who you're gonna call: not me."

Ray Parker Jr.: I was a lot nicer than you. But I'm thinking, 'Wow, every movie Ivan Reitman directs, it's going to be like Steven Spielberg and John Williams!' I never got a call again.

Richard: Too much, too soon.

Judy: Looking back now, do you think the song did make the film?

Ray Parker Jr.: I have nothing to say. I just think they should call me for Ghostbusters 3, and they should put me in the film. If they don't call me, I can understand that too.

Judy: Would you like to be the fifth Ghostbuster?

Ray Parker Jr.: Absolutely... I love the film and I love being associated with it. I wish they would call me and let me write the song.

Judy: If it doesn't work out we have a programme in this country called Most Haunted, which stars hateful Liverpudlian Derek Acorah. He goes round people's houses busting ghosts. Do you think you might be interested in writing him a theme tune?

Ray Parker Jr.: That's interesting. I guess we could sit down and talk about it.

A bit like that Beatles cover, except more iconic.

Judy: Can you think of anything to rhyme with 'Derek Acorah'?

Ray Parker Jr.: I haven't a clue. I know no more about that than I did Ghostbusters.

Judy: Perfect, you'll make a million billion pounds.

Richard: How long did it take you to write Ghostbusters?

Ray Parker Jr.: Less than three days. The song was a minute and five seconds when I wrote it. Then they said, 'Make a record!' I was like, 'Oh, ****.' I had written a verse and a bridge, and that's all I recorded.

Later on I resang it, so the vocal you hear in the videogame is only five or six years old. It's not 25 years old. But you can't tell the difference.

Richard: So you're saying you've still got it?

Ray Parker Jr.: If you told Led Zeppelin to re-record Stairway to Heaven, that might be difficult, because you've got to be in the same hall, the drums have got to sound the same... But Ghostbusters is a computer-driven song. The bass and the drums came out of the sequencer, and I play the guitar, and I got the same guy to play the saxophone. It sounds big, but you could cut Ghostbusters on less than 16 tracks.

Judy: So you're saying you're earning more than a hundred pounds a minute, for the rest of eternity, for a minute-long piece of music you made in three days using two instruments and a computer?

Ray Parker Jr.: Yep. That's pretty much it.

Ghostbusters: The Videogame is released for DS, PC, PS2, PS3, Wii and Xbox 360 on 19th June.

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About the author

Ellie Gibson

Ellie Gibson

Contributor  |  elliegibson

Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.


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