Day 245: Throwing Stones, 4/1/88

Grateful Dead Road Trips 4.2 album cover artwork

Wow, it’s been a long time since we gave Throwing Stones a spin here. The last one was way back in the second week of the project. Now I know that the band had been playing Throwing Stones since the fall of 1982, but I can’t help but think the love for the song evident at this show was somehow influenced by the recent success of In The Dark.

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The album had come out the previous summer and this collection of songs reached a whole new population of people. Yes, hardcore fans knew the song for years but with the growing scene and crop of new tunes it’s understandable that folks would get pumped for Throwing Stones at this point in time. Add in the sing-along nature of the “Ashes, ashes” part and you’ve got a recipe for success, right?

I like Throwing Stones because it simultaneously rocks and is introspective. Yes, Bobby could get a little “rock star” at the end, but that’s not too bad in this version. I really like the ensemble playing here as well. Overall, a very strong version in my humble opinion.

Let me know yours in the comments!

As the band kicks into Throwing Stones you can hear the crowd going nuts. I don’t know if that is a response to this song or just a rowdy east coast crowd, but regardless there some genuine appreciation here. Given by their contributions to the “Ashes, ashes, all fall down” I’m going to assume that folks just really liked Throwing Stones. The drums take on a tribal quality and Brent sprinkles come crystaline keys over top, which is exactly the type of unexpected juxtaposition I like to hear from the Dead. As Bobby crows the “On our own!” part the drummers add some nice double-stops, leading ultimately into Jerry solo. He’s a bit low in the mix, but gives the melody a sound workout. Brent and Weir are really high in the mix and their complementary playing is powerful. Bobby gets a bit over-emotive in some plays in the last verse, but that’s to be expected to some extent, right? The final coda over the “Ashes, ashes” part takes on a Bo Diddley beat, which gives away where the band will head next…

Complete Setlist 4/1/88

Previous Throwing Stones DFAY Selections

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2 Comments
  1. “it’s understandable that folks would get pumped for Throwing Stones at this point in time.” I went to many many shows in this era and rarely did i see anybody psyched to see this song again and again, especially near the end of the show. In fact, every time we saw another Throwing Stones into Not Fade Away, we thought the band was “Throwing Away” another show.

    • Russell, you can hear the crowd on the recording, but I admit that there’s nothing to suggest their din was the result of the song choice or just a rowdy NY crowd. I’ve certainly gotten the impression that the Throwing Stones > NFA combo got REALLY old. However, my thinking here was that for some of the newer fans the luster of the song hadn’t worn off yet, as it clearly did in another year or two. Perhaps that wasn’t clear enough in the original post. Given that I knew what many thought of the TS > NFA combo the crowd noise here surprised me, which was the main reason I mentioned it. I was expecting to hear nothing of the sorts, more in line with your comment, so thanks for posting it!

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