Frank Ocean is an interesting and unique artist that has been doing his own thing for many years. Raised in the vibrant city of New Orleans. In 2005, after Hurricane Katrina, Ocean found himself moving to Los Angeles to pursue a career in music. Working fast food jobs to stay afloat, Ocean managed to secure a writing deal at an independent California-based record label.
Writing songs for various artists between 2006 and 2009 after a leg-up from Tricky Stewart in 2009, Ocean signed a songwriting deal with Def Jam. Merely stuck in the world of songwriting, on February 16, 2011, Frank Ocean independently released his mixtape Nostalgia, Ultra, which got picked up by music publications and, as an upcoming African-American artist based in LA, He would eventually cross paths with Tyler The Creator and begin work with Odd Future.
As a member of the legendary LA crew Odd Future, Frank Ocean is one of the few artists that managed to gather enough of a cult following while in the crew that he could sustain a solo career after the crew’s dissipation.
Frank Ocean, akin to Tyler The Creator and Earl Sweatshirt, was able to gather a separate following while still in the crew for several different reasons. Not only was his reclusive persona intriguing and refreshing, but he also had a unique look. Some may have described him as ‘abstract’ or maybe even a bit ‘lonely’ looking, but that was part of his appeal. He was preppy, perhaps slightly ‘effeminate’, but this, combined with the fact he was a rapper and singer, was refreshing for many who were sick of the macho gangster aesthetic.
Ever since Odd Future, Frank Ocean has been making music, and his core fanbase has never left his side. He is experimental, progressive and introspective with his music. This is all epitomised by his debut album Channel Orange, with its lead single ‘Lost’.
Produced by Grammy-Award-winning producer Malay, ‘Lost’ is a stripped-back, R’n’B pop fusion track that is often considered to be the highlight of Ocean’s debut album. The track has been covered by artists such as Khalid, Jorja Smith and even Major Lazer. The track is one of Ocean’s hidden gems. However, the song has had a minor resurgence on the social media app TikTok.
‘Lost’ is a platinum-certified track and peaked at number nine on the UK Singles chart. Below You can listen to the track as well as view a documentary on Frank Ocean and why he is so revered.