Thursday, May 23, 2024

Grammy Ratings Slide by 1.4 Million Young Viewers– Average Performers’ Age Was Over 40


The Grammy ratings were a bust in the key demo of 18-49. Last year they scored a 9.9 in the demo. This year it was 8.5. That’s a huge dip.Total viewers this year were 25 million. Last year: over 28 million. So three million people overall tuned out. Half of them were young people who want to see their pop stars.

Well, I’m an oldie, certainly. But even I noticed that most of the performers were over 40. Madonna, Paul McCartney, AC/DC, Annie Lennox, Tom Jones, Jeff Lynne. You had Smokey, Stevie, and Nile Rodgers, not to mention Jamie Foxx. And LLCoolJ, so unhip and so uncool, continues to host as if anyone in the world besides CBS execs want him to.

I enjoyed the show– but I’m from the generation that applauded those artists. I don’t know what I would think if I were 16 and saw Madonna. I give her credit, but her act seems like Ann Corio when she used to present burlesque 20 years after it was over.

A big problem is that with a few exceptions– Katy Perry, Taylor Swift– today’s artists are manufactured. Ken Ehrlich is trying to find the best performances. They come from an older, authentic group of stars.

Why didn’t Beyonce sing a pop song in the middle of the show? Why didn’t Rihanna, whose voice is real and just great? Why were Common and John Legend not at the opening, not close, of the show? And how did ancient rockers AC/DC merit the opening spot? They were atrocious, and old old old. If I’d been a kid, seeing them, I would have turned the show off. Why didn’t Maroon 5 and Gwen Stefani open?

I don’t blame Ken Ehrlich. He has network pressures to deal with. But with all those stars, and a loss of 3 million viewers, maybe some questions will be asked within CBS.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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