Frank Ocean is my favorite musician of all time. It's a big statement, but it's true. I like other artists and I listen to other artists, but no one makes me feel the way Frank does. And I'm not describing a specific emotion, I'm saying he makes me feel. Anything and everything. Mostly myself. He reminds me, or shows me, who I am (and sometimes who I was? I know you probably don't want to entertain the idea of an artist making you remember your past lives so I won't go into it). I discovered his music about five or six years ago, when I was just a kid, but he made me feel mature. I'm a writer, and he makes me want to write. He makes me want to write and fly and explore new mediums of art and write and say exactly what I want to say without having to explain it and write. A while back I talked about how I feel an enigmatic connection to Jean-Michel Basquiat. It's the same with Frank, only a little more intense because he's still here - I feel like I know him. Like he's speaking to me.
You can probably imagine that the past four years, waiting for his return, have been agonizing for me. You can also probably imagine that Blonde was (is) like euphoria for me. I don't have many words to describe it and I kind of feel like writing some think piece on it wouldn't be doing it justice at all, so I'm going to share something else with you all. It's from Frank's Boys Don't Cry magazine, and his writing reminds me of why I love him in the first place. (I'm also sharing it with you as an excuse to read it again.)
I hope it makes you feel just as much as it does for me.
"Two years ago I found an image of a kid with her hands covering her face. A seatbelt stretched across her torso, riding up her neck and a mop of blonde hair stayed swept, for the moment, behind her ears. Her eyes seemed clear and calm but not blank, the road behind her seemed the same. I put myself in her seat then I played it all out in my head. The claustrophobia hits as the seatbelt tightens, preventing me from even leaning forward in my seat. The pressing on internal organs. I lean back and forward to release it, then back and forward again. There it is - I got free. How much of my life has happened inside a car? I wonder if the odds are that I'll die in one. Knock on wood-grain, shouldn't speak like that. We live in cars in some cities, commuting across space either for our livelihood, or devouring fossil fuels for joy. It's close to as much time as we spend in our beds, more for some. The first time I did shrooms, my manager had to come rescue me from Caltech's 'Trip Day'. As I got into her car, I swear to God the aluminum center console in Porsche truck looked like it was breathing, like the throat of something. On the freeway, leaving Pasadena, we spoke and I looked away, at the wheels and tires of cars doing that optical illusion thing they do where it looks like they're spinning backwards, which, according to Google, happens because our brains are assuming something completely wrong and showing it to us. Staring, I was transfixed by all the indicator lights oscillating and throbbing against the wind. We drove thru downtown LA headed west, flying on the same freeways I used to run outta gas on. Welcomed in by the perennial creatures, imperial palm trees and climbing vines living their lives out just off the shoulder. The feeling of familiar enhanced, on the 10. I used to ride around in my sinewy crossover SUV, smoke and listen to rough mixes of my old shit before it came out, or whatever someone wanted to play when they hooked up their iPhone to the AUX cord. A few years and a few daily-drivers later I'm not driving much anymore. It's been a year since I moved to London, at the time of writing this, and there's no practical reason to drive in this city. I ordered a GT3 RS and it'll keep low miles out here but I guess it's good to have in case of emergency :) Raf Simons once told me it was cliche, my whole car obsession. Maybe it links to a deep subconscious straight boy fantasy. Consciously though, I don't want straight - a little bent is good. I found it romantic, sometimes, editing this project. The whole time I felt like I was in the presence of a $16M Mclaren F1 armed with a disposable camera. My memories are in these pages, places closeby and long-ass numbing flights away. Cruising the suburbs of Tokyo in RWB Porsches. Throwing parties around England and mobbing freeways in four project M3s that I built with some friends. Going to Mississippi and playing in the mud with some amphibious quads. Street-casting models at a random Kung Fu dojo out in Senegal. Commissioning life-size toy boxes for the fuck of it. Shooting a music video for fun with Tyrone Lebon, the genius giant. Taking a break-slach-reconnaissance mission to Tulum, Mexico, enjoying some star visibility for a change. Recording in Tokyo, NYC, Miami, London, Paris. Stopping in Berlin to witness Berghain for myself. Trading jewels and soaking in parables with with the many-headed Brandon AKA Basedgod in conversation. I wrote a story in the middle—it's called 'Godspeed'. It's basically a reimagined part of my boyhood. Boys do cry, but I don't think I shed a tear for a good chunk of my teenage years. It's surprisingly my favorite part of my life so far. Surprising, to me, because the current phase is what I was asking the cosmos for when I was a kid. Maybe that part had its rough stretches too, but in my rearview mirror it's getting small enough to convince myself it was all good. And really though...it's still all good.
This is Boys Don't Cry & Blonde. First times. Worldwide."