Sometimes, tours billed as “final” aren’t exactly final. This year saw what was billed as the last time that Dead & Company would venture out on the road — a stint that brought the group, which continues the legacy of the Grateful Dead, plenty of bittersweet moments and a substantial financial windfall. And when a group winds down their touring days on amicable terms, there’s always a question of whether there might still be a return to the stage — and, as with so many artists before then, that could be the case for Dead & Company as well.
Citing reporting in the New York Post, Consequence’s Jo Vito wrote that the group is currently discussing the prospect of a residency at the high-profile Sphere in Las Vegas. U2’s residency in the space has garnered rave reviews, with Chris Willman writing in Variety that the audio quality “was more wonderful than anything we’ve ever heard in an 18,000-capacity venue.”
Given the Grateful Dead’s long history of pushing the envelope of what was capable for live concert sound, it’s not surprising to hear that this venue might appeal to the current incarnation of the group. The reported million dollars per concert that U2 has been making per night of their residency surely can’t hurt, either. If Dead & Company do head to the Sphere, they won’t be the first group with a penchant for sprawling jams to play there — Phish has already sold out a number of concerts in the space scheduled for April 2024.
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As for when a Dead & Company Sphere residency might take place, Consequence cites reporting pointing to the summer of 2024 — though nothing is confirmed as of this writing. It seems eminently likely that there’d be substantial demand for those shows — and a further evolution of the way high-profile artists think of the live setting. Could residencies become the new touring? It doesn’t seem out of the question.
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