NASHVILLE -– CMT’s annual “Artists of the Year” event continues to evolve from a televised Nashville industry event to fan-favorite night of once-in-a-lifetime performances, unexpected tributes, and unforgettable toasts as country music superstars and friends gather to celebrate the top country artists of the year.
This year’s annual special honoring Carrie Underwood, Chris Stapleton, Florida Georgia Line, Kelsea Ballerini, Luke Bryan, Shania Twain and Thomas Rhett fueled growth across the board with L+3 ratings climbing +21% from last year’s telecast among A18-49, attracting nearly 2 million total viewers on premiere night and nearly 4 million total viewers throughout six telecasts throughout the weekend on CMT. In fact, this year’s telecast marked the highest rated “Artists of the Year” special ever with M18-49. Socially, the special ranked as the #2 show of the night and #7 for the week among Nielsen’s Social Content Ratings.
“Artists of the Year is maturing from a rather intimate Nashville industry event to an acclaimed year-end special for fans,” said Brian Philips, President of CMT. “The elegant setting and celebratory tone combine with tributes and genre-blending performances to create a special franchise."
The success of “CMT Artists of the Year” marks the latest in a series of ratings successes for CMT. In June, the “2016 CMT Music Awards" ranked as the most-watched awards in history with nearly 4 million viewers across a three network simulcast. Similarly, the premiere simulcast of the scripted comedy “Still the King” marked CMT’s highest rated original series ever with a gross audience of 2.4 million total viewers across three nets with 1.03 A18-49 (L+3). For the fiscal year, CMT’s original premiere average finished up +7 percent versus a year ago and triple-digits above channel prime (L+3). Next year, CMT is primed with even greater growth with the highly-anticipated new season of “Nashville” premiering on Thursday, January 5th at 9pm ET/PT, the second season of “Still The King,” as well as the eight-part limited series, “Million Dollar Quartet.”