Last night’s Grammy Awards ceremony was relatively fun, provided you like to see musicians performing their hit songs and don’t give a damn about the actual presentation of awards (70 or so were given out in a pre-show event, leaving only about 10 for the show itself), and also assuming you don’t think it invalidates the entire Grammys organization to occasionally give trophies to people like Louis C.K., but if you can get past those hurdles: Relative fun awaits!
But not even relative fun is enough for the Grammy Awards to make a sizable dent in the cultural consciousness, with last night’s show only getting slightly better ratings than the all-time low record of last year’s ceremony. This comes from Variety, which explains that the somewhat remote 2021 Grammys got about 9.4 million viewers, depending on which metrics you trust, and this year’s show got about 9.6 million. On the one hand, it’s an improvement! On the other hand, it’s barely an improvement. By contrast, the 2020 Grammys, which were held in January of that year when everyone was still happy, got 18.8 million.
That 9.6 million is still lower than the all-time low record for the Oscars, though, which came from its 2021 ceremony as well. The 2022 Oscars last week got about 13.7 million viewers, and those were the second-lowest ratings the Oscars have ever gotten, but that doom and gloom is still better than what the Grammys have been doing the last couple of years.
We noted when the Oscar ratings came out that dramatic, controversial ceremonies don’t necessarily translate to good ratings the next year, but it doesn’t seem strange to think that maybe a straightforward, mostly inoffensive ceremony like last night’s Grammys might convince more people to tune in next year. If the Oscars have a history of being a shitshow, and the Grammys have a history of being a pretty good time, maybe there will be a shift at some point where Music’s Biggest Night becomes more of a cultural event than the Oscars… but only in the sense that nobody is watching either of them anymore.