A 17-minute-long live-reaction video that BTS recorded while watching the Grammy Premiere Ceremony – the pre-televised portion of the annual awards show – nearly attracted more viewers than the official stream itself.
The Grammy Premiere Ceremony kicked off at noon PST yesterday, March 14th, and featured presenters including rapper Chika and comedian Bill Burr (who received his first Grammy nomination, for “Best Comedy Album”). Moreover, the approximately 150-minute-long pre-telecast event encompassed eight performances as well as awards for “Best Album Notes,” “Best Contemporary Blues Album,” and “Best Pop Duo or Group Performance.”
BTS received a nomination in the latter category, with their chart-topping “Dynamite” effort, though Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande ultimately secured the award with “Rain On Me.” A staggering 11.31 million ARMY diehards tuned into the initially mentioned BTS V Live livestream – a seemingly relaxed affair, complete with all seven group members seated comfortably before a balloon reading “THANKS ARMY.”
And the Recording Academy, for its part, revealed in a tweet that 12.6 million fans had tuned into the Grammy Premiere Ceremony. As an interesting aside, Grammys higher-ups fired off all manner of tweets during the 210-minute-long televised ceremony and partnered with GIPHY to create a substantial number of GIFs.
Viewership figures for the telecast proper hadn’t been released at the time of this piece’s publishing, but with most other awards shows having suffered considerable ratings declines, the Recording Academy evidently went all in to drum up social-media interest in the Grammys. To be sure, a quick count showed that the Recording Academy published or retweeted somewhere around 200 messages during and immediately after the telecast, not including the Grammy Premiere posts.
Predictably, given the strong interest in BTS’s reaction livestream, ARMY members promptly expressed dissatisfaction with the K-pop sensation’s missing out on the “Best Pop Duo or Group Performance” award.
“Yeah and we were very disappointed,” one fan responded to the Recording Academy’s aforementioned tweet highlighting the Grammy Premiere viewer total.
“Y’all dropped from 1.2M to 500k worry about that racists,” relayed a BTS follower.
The reaction to the tweet announcing the “Best Pop Duo or Group Performance” winner was even more pronounced. For reference, the message that the Recording Academy published immediately prior, specifying that John Legend had won “Best R&B Album” for Bigger Love, generated 962 retweets, 486 quote tweets, and about 4,600 likes.
But the tweet pertaining to the “Best Pop Duo” winner garnered a whopping 18,200 retweets, 19,200 quote tweets, and 70,400 likes.
“Robbed. BTS deserved so much more,” one individual responded to the latter tweet.
“Dynamite one of the best selling song[s] didn’t win are u kidding with me man,” stated another supporter.
“Already sketchy that they weren’t nominated for more awards due to their success internationally including the US (since that’s the only part you care about) but now they don’t even win this?? Smh,” penned a different user yet.
The Weeknd, who didn’t receive a Grammy nomination this year despite the commercial success of After Hours, revealed that he intends to boycott the event moving forward. Separately, BTS agency Big Hit Entertainment last week unveiled plans to rebrand as Hybe Corporation.