CBS is heading to the skies this weekend to promote Sunday’s Grammys. The Eye network partnered with the Recording Academy last night to produce two unannounced drone light shows on Friday night above the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Another show will take place on Saturday night at 7 p.m. PT over the Los Angeles Trade Tech College, just South of the 110/10 interchange in Downtown Los Angeles.
According to CBS, the 13 minute-long shows feature 400 drones using colorful lights in the night sky to display key lyrics from the Grammy-nominated releases in the album of the year category. (As seen in the video below, that included songs by Harry Styles, Bad Bunny, Lizzo, Beyoncé, Adele and Kendrick Lamar). Rotating musical images also included the Grammys gramophone.
The network said the drones are operated by one pilot and the displays are 400 feet high and 530 feet wide, which made them viewable for many miles.
“What we really we wanted to create something that would be a spectacle, and the team came up with what we think is a really cool idea,” said CBS president and chief marketing officer Mike Benson. “The thing that you can do the technology now with drones, where you can actually group them together and fly them in formation, is pretty spectacular.”
Benson says he hopes CBS caught folks a bit by surprise on Friday night, and that it might live on through social media. “Where social social media really allows you to scale things is in areas where there’s a large population,” he said. “A few people capture it and put it out there. And if it looks cool, they share it. Then it scales globally for us. And so that’s why we’re always looking for the types of things that people want to capture and share.
“We want people to be able to connect what we’re doing directly to the music and the artists and the Grammys,” Benson added. “We think the way we’re executing that will make it happen.”
The 65th Grammy Awards, hosted by Trevor Noah, airs live from Los Angeles’ Crypto.com Arena on Sunday, Feb. 5 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT, on CBS and streamed live on Paramount+.
Here’s a look at Friday night’s drone show: