Not surprising, given the tumult over Whitney Houston's death. Viewership was around 40 million, according to preliminary figures. From Variety:
Viewership was high at the outset with about 40.1 million, according to Nielsen, and peaked in the 9:30 p.m. half-hour with 43.1 million. The opening half-hour included the planned opening number by Bruce Springsteen as well as a prayer for the late Whitney Houston, read by host LL Cool J.