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CBS' Grammy show ranks No. 2 all-time with 39 million viewers

February 13, 2012 |  9:16 am

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It was a big night for Adele, and it was a big night for the Grammys.

Sunday's awards show on CBS was the second-most watched of all time, with a giant 39 million total viewers, according to Nielsen.

The only Grammy telecast with more viewers was in 1984, when 43.8 million tuned in. That was the year that Michael Jackson won a record eight Grammys. Last year's show attracted 26.7 million viewers.

This time, the performer of the evening was British torch singer Adele, who won all six awards for which she was nominated. She also performed live, as did Paul McCartney, Foo Fighters, Chris Brown, Jason Aldean, Kelly Clarkson and others. The show also featured tributes to Whitney Houston, the 1980s diva who died over the weekend.

Among viewers 18 to 49, the key demographic for many advertisers, the  3 1/2-hour show delivered a 14.1 rating, the best since 1990.

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-- Scott Collins (twitter.com/scottcollinsLAT)

Photo: British singer Adele won six Grammy Awards on Sunday. Credit: Cliff Lipson / CBS

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