Thoughts on the CMA's Part 4: Media and Ratings

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Alright, the dust has settles, and I imagine pretty much the entire country music community has evacuated the New York City Area by now. Most probably couldn’t take too much more of the glamour, crowds, and the fast pace of the city.

FOX News and many other national news outlets covered the story. The country music artists made their rounds on all the popular talk shows and morning news programs. What a major media blast for country music.

All through the day, the print news media articles have popped up, one by one. The AP article can be found just about anywhere you look. It does a good job of reporting the events, just like it should. 3 awards for Lee Ann Womack took the headline, her comments in some of them, Keith Urban winning Male Vocalist and Entertainer of the Year, a mention of Garth Brooks in Times Square, and yes, Big & Rich just had to be mentioned in every article.

The Austrilia press took basically the same direction in most of the articles I could find, except Keith Urban took the headline and focused most quotes on him.

Good job on the mass media on presenting the information, just like they do each year. The AP and other newswire services alike are used to covering the award shows and know what to write.

I checked the The Tenneseean. The Nasville based paper did an excellent job, as expected, with an in-depth look at the show. Just a few lines short of a transcript.

Now, the New York slant on things. Fashion was their biggest thing. Go figure. Comments (close to down-right making fun of the atire) were made all throughout about the rhinestones and hats. Blah, Blah, Blah. Just because they don’t look like New Yorker’s (most of them anyway and thank god they don’t,) doesn’t mean they were not in style. Nashville and the rest of middle-America is many light years away from the importance of style in New York. Quiet frankly, we, non-New Yorkers, don’t care (more about this later.)

A New Your Daily News columinist did make a big mistake in his collum refering to Keith Urban as receiving the Entertainer of the Year Award 2 years in a row and making a few comments that I didn’t believe were exactly appropriate. But hey, what can I say, it is a simple mis-understanding.

There were also a few articles discussing the lack of a country radio station in the New York City. This could be the wake-up call to New York, but I am not going to hold my breath. If it does happen, well, the CMA’s trip to New York, I will be happy to call a complete success.

Now, here is where I ran into a problem with the coverage.

The focus was on fashion, differences between the way of life between New York and Nashville, the stars who showed up, and on and on. Very little on the celebration of the music itself. That is one thing that New York missed in its coverage. Not just mention of the winners, but really dig down and explore the music. They may be very surprised at what they hear, and not just a quick peek into the community.

The Ratings:

Nielsen Ratings for this year:

1st place for # households (11.1/17 share) (2004: 9.7/15 basically, the same)
1st place for Viewers (17.73 million)
1st place adults 18-49 (5.4/13 share)
1st place adults 25-54 (6.7/15 share)

Best Tuesday viewer and key demographics for CBS since May 10, 2005
Best Tuesday adult viewers 25-54 for CBS since last year’s show.

My Final Thoughts:

Well, that completes my look at the CMA Awards for this year. It is such a special day for me. Ever since I can remember, the night of the CMA’s have been “the” night of the year to me. I enjoy this night more than any of the hollidays, believe it or not. This is one of 2 nights (the ACM’s the 2nd) that my music, that I get up for each and every morning is in the massive media spotlight. I get such a rush about the whole event and talking to co-workers and friends about it. Making my predictions and seeing how well I do (for the last 3, 7 awards picked correctly.) It even became even more special to me 2 years ago, when I became a member of the CMA.

Country Music is alive and well, I must say, and maybe this year, a little bit more than usual.

P.S. If you are looking for a list of performers or the list of winners, visit: