Grammys Producers Already Know 2021 Show Will Set Record-Low Ratings – Here’s Why

Tony Maglio
·1-min read

The Weeknd is boycotting the Grammys this weekend. But will viewers who do not feel personally snubbed by the Recording Academy also will tune out the latest COVID-era virtual awards show? Last year, the Grammy Awards on CBS drew 18.792 million total viewers, according to Nielsen, the awards show’s smallest tally since 2008 (17.182 million) — but not technically a record low. The 2020 Grammys’ rating in the key adults 18-49 demo, a 5.4, was the lowest of all time, however. Dating back to 1988, which is when Nielsen’s electronic records started, three Grammy Awards telecasts have performed worse in total viewers than 2020’s. To date, the all-time smallest audience for a Grammys telecast is 16.999 million back in 2006. That one aired on a Wednesday, not a Sunday, which is the day of the week we’ve come to expect for the scheduling of major awards shows. The other Grammys broadcast to attract a smaller audience than 2020’s show came 25 years earlier in 1995, when “Music’s Biggest Night” averaged 17.279 million total viewers. The Grammys didn’t actually air on a Sunday until 2003. Since then, only 2006’s show and 2016’s (24.927 million on a Monday) deviated from the regular...

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