Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Retro Video of the Week: "Touch of Grey" by Grateful Dead

In a timely coincidence, given The Dead & Company's two-night stand at Wrigley Field this past weekend, thirty years ago tomorrow, the Grateful Dead released their twelfth studio album, In the Dark.  The album sparked a rejuvenation for the band.  They hadn't released a studio album since 1980, and In the Dark ended up going double platinum, getting up to #6 on the Billboard album charts -- the band's highest-charting album.  Much of the album's success is traced to the surprise hit "Touch of Grey."  The song didn't really sound like anything else on the radio in 1987, although it sounds very Dead-esque and could be on pretty much any of their other albums and fit in.

"Touch of Grey" is catchy as hell.  That memorable sing-along chorus -- "I will get by / I will survive" -- definitely captured the essence of how the flower-power Boomers must have felt as they entered their 40s in Reagan's America.  The song marched all the way up to #9 on the Billboard Hot 100, which is still the Grateful Dead's only Top 40 hit.

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