Pop Up Video: Touch Of Grey

Touch of Grey
Single: Grateful Dead
Album: In the Dark
B-side: My Brother Esau
Released: 1987
Genre: Pop rock
Songwriters: Jerry Garcia, Robert Hunter

Grateful Dead first performed "Touch of Grey" as an encore on September 15, 1982, at the Capital Centre in Landover, Maryland. In 1987, it was the lead track from the Dead's studio album In the Dark. Released as a single, it peaked on Billboard at number 9

Hit records weren't typical of the Dead. Their previous high-water mark had been in 1971 with "Truckin'," which peaked at number 64. 


The video for "Touch of Grey" was filmed on May 9, 1987, after a show in Monterey, California. The shoot was set up, and the crowd re-admitted. They saw the band run through the song in human form and as skeleton likenesses. This footage was combined to create the clip. Dennis McNally, then the Dead's publicist, called the hit "a song that almost killed the Grateful Dead.


Before "Touch of Grey," the Grateful Dead flew mainly under the radar. They promoted and sold out arenas but also played smaller audiences. After the record, they made the cover of Rolling Stone. MTV devoted an entire day's programming to the band. This caused friction between the band and its close-knit fan base.

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