A Nightmare on My Street (found DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince music video; 1988)
Cover of the song's single release.
Date found: 22 Oct 2018
Found by: Nancy Thompson
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince were a rap duo consisting of disc jockey Jeff Townes (Jazzy Jeff) and rapper Will Smith (The Fresh Prince) that were active between 1985 and 1994 before releasing a new single "Get Lit" in October 2017. Despite receiving criticism for not being as hardcore as other rappers, the duo ended up having numerous platinum-selling albums and singles throughout their career, and are still remembered fondly by many today, largely in part due to Will Smith's TV series The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
A Nightmare On My Street
"A Nightmare On My Street" was the third single released from their second studio album He's The DJ, I'm The Rapper. The song was a parody of the A Nightmare on Elm Street film franchise and featured Freddy Krueger (referred to as Fred in the song) terrorizing The Fresh Prince in what he believes to be a nightmare until the end of the song revealed it actually happened, with Jazzy Jeff being Fred's next victim. The single was released on August 1st, 1988, and was a smash hit, reaching number 15 on the Billboard Hot 100, and was considered for the soundtrack for A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master, though it ultimately went unused.
Due to its popularity, a music video was produced for the song that was directed by Scott Kalvert. The video begins with Jazzy Jeff being shown to be hospitalized after the events of the song, before showcasing The Fresh Prince rapping inside a stereotypical haunted house, a movie theatre, and various other locations while the events of the song take place. Krueger's design in the video is significantly different than in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, sporting powdery, bluish-gray skin, a bleached-blonde flattop, a leather jacket, record player tonearms in place of claws, sunglasses, and elements of a home stereo lodged in his head. This significant deviation from Krueger's standard design appears to have been a means of avoiding any rights issues regarding the character, which ultimately proved futile given the lawsuit surrounding the music video.
Due to New Line Cinema, the copyright holders of the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, never giving the duo authorization to use the Freddy Krueger character, they filed a lawsuit against them claiming that the success of the song and video would do irreparable damage to a A Nightmare on Elm Street based rap song the company had authorized and heavily endorsed ("Are You Ready for Freddy" by The Fat Boys). The lawsuit ended up being settled out of court, with the vinyl release of He's The DJ I'm The Rapper containing a sticker that said "[This song] is not part of the soundtrack...and is not authorized, licensed, or affiliated with the Nightmare on Elm Street films", along with all known copies of the music video being destroyed.
Due to it being unknown if the video was ever actually broadcast, there was a chance the footage was lost forever, with all that survived being numerous fan-made music videos, including a recreation of what the original video could have looked like.
On October 22nd, 2018, a video entitled Original Nightmare on My Street music video was uploaded to YouTube by user Nancy Thompson. The video appears to be a VCR recording of the original music video from when it originally aired. The quality of the footage has degraded over time, suffering from tracking issues, color grading errors (which among other things makes Freddie's skin appear a deep pinkish-red color), and other artifacts, along with a portion of a Growing Pains episode accidentally taped over a few seconds of footage.
On November 30th, 2018, the official DJJazzyJeffVEVO YouTube channel uploaded a cleaner version of the video, presumably taken from the original master videotape; as such, it features more accurate color grading, lacks the artifacts & tracking issues, and includes the portion that had been taped over on Thompson's upload.
- MovieWeb article about the song and music video. Retrieved 20 Feb '19