Dead & Company tour with Panther arrays
Monday, 4 July 2022
deadco2022The band has sold more than three million tickets across 172 reported shows
USA - Dead & Company are back on the road for their 2022 summer tour which kicked off in mid-June at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. The tour is powered by a system featuring Meyer Sound’s new Panther large-format linear line array loudspeaker.
The band further augmented its repertoire of tunes while UltraSound - decades-long audio provider for the Grateful Dead and successor ensembles - assembled the largest system of Panther loudspeakers in North America, and the first to roll out on a USA tour.
To cover expansive audience areas in a mix of sports stadiums and larger sheds, UltraSound is carrying a Panther inventory that allows reconfiguration for venue size. For stadiums, a typical deployment is four identical arrays - two main front and two side - each comprising 14 Panther loudspeakers, with four Panther-W wide coverage versions flown under 12 Panther-L long-throw versions.
Mixing the band is FOH engineer Derek Featherstone, who also serves as tour director and UltraSound CEO.
“Panther is a very responsive system and reacts quickly to change,” remarks Featherstone. “The vocals tend to lead nicely, staying up front in the mix better than with last year’s system. I’ve altered some vocal compression to take advantage of this. Also, the general consensus so far is that Panther needs less EQ, so optimising the system is quicker. We don’t need as much high frequency boost in stadiums, and the detail is more transparent.
“We’re using the same count of Panther as we had for Leo last year, but the reduced size and weight allowed us to carry more subs and deploy them more effectively. Recovered truck space allowed us to bring the VLFCs, while Panther’s reduced weight makes it easier to do more end-fire sub arrays in stadiums within the same total weight limits.”
For larger venue deployments, arrays are bolstered in the bass registers by 18 flown 1100‑LFC low-frequency control elements plus 12 700-HP high-power subwoofers on the ground. Ten VLFC very low-frequency control elements extend response down to a subsonic 13 Hz. A dozen Leopard compact line array loudspeakers are deployed singly for front fill, and a total of eight Ganaxy Network Platforms provide system drive and optimization. The stage foldback system comprises 10 MJF‑210 and two MJF-212A stage monitors along with two JM‑1P loudspeakers for side-fill and two 1100-LFC elements as drum subs.
In addition to Featherstone, the Dead & Company tour is supported by Michał Kacunel (system engineer), Ross Harris (recording engineer and ground PA tech), Lonnie Quinn and Ian Dubois (monitor engineers), along with crew members Sean McAdam, Aaron Lauzier, and Reilly Williamson.
The band’s 2022 tour proceeds eastward with 20 shows scheduled in 16 cities, wrapping up at Citi Field in New York on 16 July 16. Since its 2015 debut, the band has grossed $300m and has sold more than three million tickets across 172 reported shows.

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