It’s a dark and tantalizing rumor, one only whispered about by longtime fans of He’s The DJ, I’m The Rapper: There was once a video shot for DJ Jazzy Jeff And The Fresh Prince’s “Nightmare On My Street,” the leadoff song from the 1988 album. Well, consider it a Halloween miracle, because the video has surfaced.
Despite the shaky quality of the YouTube upload (and the fact that it appears to have been dubbed over an old episode of Growing Pains, which briefly breaks into the video around the 1:43 mark), the complete video accompanying the Fresh Prince/Jazzy Jeff song appears in full, low-rent Elm Street house set design and all. In case you’re unfamiliar, “Nightmare On My Street” is a charming old-school tribute to the Freddy Krueger film series, as narrated by Will Smith with the same commitment to ’80s hip-hop verisimilitude that leads to couplets such as “I wanted something cool to quench my thirst / I thought to myself, ‘yo, this heat is the worst!’” The entire story, from Smith going out to see A Nightmare On Elm Street with friends, to being confronted by Freddy in his dreams (albeit a Freddy re-envisioned to look a lot like a cartoonish monster version of a member of the Fresh Prince’s posse), to nearly getting eviscerated in his sleep, to the coda of hearing Freddy gut Jazzy Jeff and boast, “I’m the DJ now!” It’s a delight.
Who knows how long it will remain up, so watch while you can. The best part might actually be the ending disclaimer, which stresses that “‘Nightmare On My Street’ is not a part of and has not been embodied in the soundtrack of any Nightmare On Elm Street motion picture,” just in case anyone was worried that New Line Cinema may have been just copying and pasting a low-budget video from a Philadelphia rap group into its movies. So please, enjoy this reminder of the magic captured on film from a time when musical tie-ins to movies actually weren’t always welcome—this song was turned down for inclusion in A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master.