Big news from the Recording Academy this morning, as CEO Neil Portnow announced that Kendrick Lamar, Adele, The Weeknd, and Little Big Town will perform at this year’s Grammy Awards. Portnow added that the awards will be broadcast by CBS live on both coasts for the first time ever. Previously, the ceremony was not aired live in the Pacific and Mountain time zones.
The Grammys will be the last of the major awards shows to adapt broadcasts to air live from coast to coast, a feature that has been made a ratings necessity in recent years due to the rise of social media-based spoilers.
“We’ve discussed this with CBS for years, but a variety of factors came together this year, and we collectively agreed that we had the perfect opportunity to try a new model and see how viewers respond,” said Portnow about the change.
As far as booking goes, there isn’t a more star-studded list than this. Lamar is the frontrunner for awards at this year’s ceremony with 11 nominations that include Album of the Year, a category in which he will compete with The Weeknd’s 2015 release Beauty Behind The Madness. Little Big Town have two nominations, including Best Country Album. And though Adele isn’t up for any awards — her record-breaking album 25 came out too late to qualify for nominations this year — she will probably receive an armload of nominations at next year’s Grammy ceremony.
Featuring such massively-popular artists and adding coast-to-coast live broadcasting will likely increasing the awards show’s viewership considerably. Last year, the Grammys recieved 24.8 million viewers, down from 28.5 million in 2014, and the ceremony has been on a steady decline since 2012.
“This lineup of talented artists is just the beginning of what will, once again, prove to be music’s biggest night. We look forward to celebrating what’s been a wonderful year in music, honoring the best of the best and featuring never-before-seen performances,” said Portnow.
The 2016 Grammy awards will be hosted by L.L. Cool J — for his fifth time as emcee — and will take place on February 15 at 8 p.m. EST