Hosted by Trevor Noah from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, the two-month-delayed 64th Annual Grammy Awards drew 8.93 million total viewers across multiple platforms, according to time-zone adjusted fast national data from Nielsen. The in-person show, which kicked off with Noah making a reference to Will Smith’s infamous slap of Chris Rock at last weekend’s Oscars, aired live coast to coast on CBS from 8-11:30 p.m. ET, and it streamed on Paramount Plus.
Last year’s Grammy Awards, which were mostly virtual due to the pandemic, managed a record low 8.8 million viewers in the comparable preliminary time-zone adjusted data, airing Sunday, March 14. While that total adjusted up to 9.4 million viewers in Nielsen’s Live + Same Day, which includes out-of-home viewing, it was still a record low for the awards show and down 50% from the 18.8 million that tuned in the year prior for the January 2020 telecast.
In terms of the key demo, the 2021 show had an initial 2.1 rating among adults 18-49, according to Nielsen, also a record low for the Grammys.
CBS estimates that Sunday’s telecast will adjust up to 9.6 million total viewers when Live + Same Day data comes in Tuesday. If that rings true, it will mark a 2.1% increase from last year in the final numbers. Variety will adjust this story at that time to reflect the new viewership total.
During last night’s Grammys, Jon Batiste, who was nominated for 11 Grammys, was the big winner, picking up five trophies, including album of the year for “We Are.” Silk Sonic — a group featuring the collective talents of Bruno Mars and Anderson Paak — grabbed four awards, including record of the year, while Olivia Rodrigo and Foo Fighters each collected three Grammys.
The 2022 Grammys delivered the awards show its largest live-streaming audience in history across Paramount Plus and other CBS platforms. The 64th Annual Grammy Awards racked up 92 billion potential impressions on social media, increasing from both 2021 and 2020. The “#GRAMMYS” hashtag trended in the top 10 for 18 hours and peaked at No. 1.
Before the Grammys’ major, mid-pandemic ratings decline, the event had been experiencing a much more gradual pattern of year-over-year audience drop-off. The CBS awards show actually increased its audience slightly between 2018 (19.8 million viewers) and 2019 (20 million), and previously between 2016’s Monday-night ceremony (24.9 million) and 2017’s Sunday return (26.1 million). Prior to the 2021 drop off, the previous record-low audience for the Grammys was 16.9 million total viewers back in 2006.
A week before the Grammys, the 2022 Oscars drew 16.6 million viewers, up 58% from last year’s record-low Academy Awards audience of 10.5 million, according to Live + Same Day Nielsen data. The 94th Academy Awards averaged a 3.8 rating in the key adults 18-49 demographic, up 73% from the 2021 telecast. While the year-over-year growth is impressive, it’s still the second-worst viewership and ratings performance in the history of the Oscars.