Festival season is among us and watching the 2017 lineups drop is like Christmas morning all over again. This week, the lineups of BottleRock
and Governors Ball
were revealed. Between the three, there are big names like Beyonce, Kendrick Lamar, Chance The Rapper, Childish Gambino, Radiohead, Foo Fighters, and so many more incredible acts but we can't help but ask: Where the f*ck is Frank?
It's been three years since Frank Ocean
has performed on a stage and it's safe to say, we are ready for his return. Frank Ocean fans everywhere had to wait four years between channel ORANGE
and his sophomore album Blonde
, which was finally released last year after teasing it for what felt like forever. And prior to Blonde
, Frank released a 45-minute visual album titled Endless
, which was basically a black-and-white film of Frank doing stuff in an empty warehouse. And it only made us want new Frank Ocean songs even more. So, yeah, Frank Ocean loves to build up the anticipation for his fans.
Well, it turns out Frank has only committed to a handful of music festivals in 2017 - three of which are in the US (so far). Those festivals are Hangout Festival in Alabama, Sasquatch Festival in Washington and Panorama Festival in New York. All of which are relatively low-key and not massive mainstream music festivals. Frank will also be at Lovebox in London, England versus a super commercialized festival such as Glastonbury. So it got us thinking: Why wouldn't an artist like Frank Ocean make a big, dramatic comeback at a festival such as Coachella, Bonnaroo or Outsidelands?
This could be for a few reasons. The first one that comes to mind is the intimacy factor so he can put on the perfect show for his fans. Festivals like Hangout and Sasquatch have a capacity of almost half as many attendees as festivals like Coachella. After a three-year hiatus, Frank wants to perform for his FANS and not thousands of people who came to his set to hear "Thinkin' Bout You" because that's the only song they know. Plus, over the years, festivals - especially Coachella - have become less about the music to some attendees and more about "festival fashion" and "being seen". So, I don't blame Frank for wanting to look into a crowd without being blinded by a sea of flower crowns.
And we don't think Frank is in it for the money, either. As he said in "Futura Free" off Blonde
, "Play these songs, it's therapy, mama / They paying me mama, I should be payin' them. / I should be paying yall, honest to god.
" The guy loves his fans (and his mama, too).
Another reason could be that Frank doesn't want to pull a Kanye and burn out. Kanye West freaked out in 2016 - he was excited, got way over his head with performing and didn't finish his tour (or some of his sets). Frank Ocean seems to be taking a cautious approach so he doesn't burn out and become a sellout. I mean, Blonde
is only his second album and I'm sure Frank's in it for the long run. Plus, he's playin' hard to get so the people want more. Smart move, Frank.
Maybe he's attempting to help the smaller festivals gain attention to sell more tickets. Well, both Hangout and Sasquatch completely sold-out the past few years but Panorama is a newbie so having Frank Ocean on the lineup could mean it has the potential to instantly sell-out this year.
Or maybe were overthinking the whole thing and Frank doesn't want to face the sweltering heat of the desert at Coachella or drowned in a puddle of his sweat from the humidity at Bonnaroo. Whatever Frank Oceans reason may be - we're just happy he's back.