Throwing It All Away

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For the 2008 Rob Smith album, see Throwing It All Away (album).
"Throwing It All Away"
Genesis ThrowingItAllAway.jpg
Single by Genesis
from the album Invisible Touch
B-side "I'd Rather Be You"
Released 8 August 1986 (U.S.)
8 June 1987 (UK)
Format US: 7", UK: 7", 12"
Recorded The Farm, Surrey; 1985–1986
Length 3:51
Label VirginUK GENS 5
AtlanticUS 89372
Lyrics - Mike Rutherford
Music - Tony Banks, Phil Collins, Mike Rutherford
Genesis singles chronology
"Tonight, Tonight, Tonight"
"Throwing It All Away"
"No Son of Mine"
Invisible Touch track listing
"Throwing It All Away"
"The Brazilian"

"Throwing It All Away" is the seventh track on the 1986 album Invisible Touch by Genesis. It was the second single from the album in 1986, reaching No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100[1] and No. 22 in Britain,[2] where it was released as the last single of the album in 1987. In the U.S., it also went to No. 1 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart in October 1986 and the Album Rock Tracks chart in August 1986. The working title was "Zephyr and Zeppo".

The song is a soft rock ballad structured around a guitar riff by Mike Rutherford, who also wrote the lyrics.[3] The U.S. single included the instrumental "Do the Neurotic" as the B-side: the UK edition featured the track "I'd Rather Be You".

The CD version of the Invisible Touch album incorrectly lists the running time as 4:41; the correct time was 3:51.[citation needed]

Live performances[edit]

"Throwing It All Away" was performed live during the Invisible Touch,[4] The Way We Walk,[5] Calling All Stations and Turn It On Again[6] tours; aside from the 1986 leg of the Invisible Touch tour, the song was transposed to a lower key to accommodate Collins' deepening voice.

Genesis performing "Throwing it All Away" in Pittsburgh, Mellon Arena, 9 September 2007

A live version appears on the The Way We Walk, Volume One: The Shorts and Live Over Europe 2007 CDs and the When in Rome 2007 DVD.

During the intro and just before the end of the live performances, Collins would engage in Call and response with the audience using nonsensical language.

Music video[edit]

A music video for the song was composed of soundcheck footage and shots of the band travelling whilst on their Invisible Touch tour of North America, much of which was filmed by Phil Collins on his 1985 Sony Handycam. It is currently featured on their DVD The Video Show.


In Billboard magazine's Critics' Choice at the end of 1986, Kim Freeman chose the song as number seven in his top ten countdown, describing it as "a rare ballad that isn't too sappy to enjoy".[7]

Stevie Chick, writing for The Guardian in 2014, called the song a "genuinely affecting ballad" but observed its similarity to Collins' solo work, stating it "could have easily fitted on his solo albums".[8]

In his assessment of the song for AllMusic, François Couture claimed: "This love song featured heartfelt vocals, a simple piano accompaniment, and Mike Rutherford's trademark rhythm guitar, plus a very catchy chorus. Nothing striking, but all the elements came together nicely and adult contemporary radio stations played it extensively."[9]

Track listing[edit]

7": Virgin / GENS 5 (UK)[edit]

  1. "Throwing It All Away" – 3:41
  2. "I'd Rather Be You" – 3:57

7": Atlantic / 7-89372 (US)[edit]

  1. "Throwing It All Away" – 3:41
  2. "Do The Neurotic" (Edit) – 5:21

12": Virgin / GENS 5–12 (UK)[edit]

  1. "Throwing It All Away" (live)
  2. "I'd Rather Be You"
  3. "Invisible Touch" (live)
  • Also released on MC (GENSC5)
  • Live tracks recorded at The Forum, Los Angeles, 1986


Release history[edit]

Country Date
United States 8 August 1986
United Kingdom 8 June 1987


  1. ^ archive (link)
  2. ^ Genesis UK chart history, The Official Charts Company. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  3. ^ Prasad, Anil (2007). "Genesis: Turning it on again". Innerviews. Retrieved 27 May 2012. 
  4. ^ Invisible Tour Songs & Dates
  5. ^ The Way We Walk Tour Songs & Dates
  6. ^ Turn it on again Tour Songs & Dates
  7. ^ Billboard. 27 December 1986.
  8. ^ Chick, Stevie (3 September 2014). "Genesis: 10 of the best". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 6 September 2014. 
  9. ^ "Song Review by François Couture". AllMusic. Retrieved 24 June 2014. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"Stuck with You" by Huey Lewis and the News
Billboard Adult Contemporary number-one single
11 October 1986
Succeeded by
"I'll Be Over You" by Toto