You might say that Frank Ocean is playing it extra-cool in the promo video for his upcoming appearance on Saturday Night Life. Fred Armisen and host Seth MacFarlane play nice together in the video, dueling their various funny voices and making small talk. As for Ocean, he whiles away the short promo, scratching his chin, nodding his head a few times — in agreement or to keep awake? — and rolling his eyes at the Family Guy creator. His only line? “Not cool, Seth.” Arriving on the scene as the sweet singing elder (though hardly old) member of the wily rap crew Odd Future, Ocean has always struck us as a many of few but poignant words, and so we have to assume that he really meant something by each of those three words. We’ll just have to tune in to Ocean’s “bro”-ified SNL debut tomorrow to find out what.
Those turning into opening night of Saturday Night Live‘s this weekend will be treated to a performance from scheduled musical guest Frank Ocean, and today Ocean shares that he’s bringing a guest of his own with him: his “bro” John Mayer. Mayer is supposed to be taking it easy after throat surgery, but has already forgone the doctor’s orders to play with Walk The Moon pre-VMAs, and we are happy to see him doing it again to help Ocean kick-off this 38th season of SNL.
Ocean tweeted the good news this morning, writing “SNL this weekend. Me and the bro John Mayer.” And though nothing has been officially confirmed, he’s got the internet alight with possibilities. Maybe Ocean and his “bro” will do something with “White,” that smooth grooving Channel Orange interlude. Perhaps more likely, the two will perform Ocean’s 10-minute ode to strippers, “Pyramids,” which ends with an uncredited Mayer guitar solo. Otherwise, Mayer could probably do some good to “Thinking About You,” which Ocean played acoustic at VMAs; or maybe he could bring his maybe-girlfriend Katy Perry along for the “Sweet Life”/”California Gurls” medley that we just realized we need. Because — not sugar-free — mango, peaches and whipped cream bras, wouldn’t that be something?
Legendary Stevie Wonder found himself in a bit of trouble recently when a reporter asked him his feelings about Frank Ocean publicly admitting he’d once been in love with a man. Wonder told the Guardian, “I think honestly, some people who think they’re gay, they’re confused,” he said. “People can misconstrue closeness for love. People can feel connected, they bond. I’m not saying all [gay people are confused]. Some people have a desire to be with the same sex. But that’s them.” After the interview hit the ‘net the backlash was inevitable. The “Ribbon in the Sky” musician took the holiday weekend to make an official statement to let the world know that his comments had been taken out of context. Read more…
Frank Ocean felt horribly about cancelling a string of European festival tour dates where he was scheduled to take the stage with Coldplay. Along the way Frank has picked up a couple of new gigs, including performing at this year’s 2012 VMAs where we secretly hope he gives us a visual to “Pyramids.” On September 15th, FO will serve as the musical guest for Saturday Night Live’s premiere episode for its 38th season. Wowzers. Can you believe SNL has been around for 38 seasons? The success of Frank’s Channel Orange is shaping up for one blast of a year for the R&B newbie. Read more…
The anticipated outrageous and unpredictable moments of the 2012 MTV Video Music Awards are upon us, folks. This year viewers can expect one thing for sure: to laugh until their stomach hurts with funny man Kevin Hart as host. But what is the VMAs without its all-star lineup of performers? Most recently added to the roster is talented newcomer Frank Ocean. Imagine him singing “Pyramids” with the visual stage set-up to accompany the song. This could mean actual faux pyramids, stripper poles, a stripper–oh my, the possibilities! Read more…
“This next song I am going to play I guess is pretty important to me because of some of the things I’ve said in the past month. Just kind of taking some freedom for my self, you know?” announced Frank Ocean at his Lollapalooza set this weekend, to a crowd soggy from the rain but in high-spirits nonetheless. And, mostly still at the front of the stage, wearing what seems to be his Channel Orange uniform — a crimson cardigan and a red, white and blue handkerchief around his forehead — he performed “Bad Religion,” a harrowing love song that has also come to mark his coming-out. The rain delay had pushed Ocean’s set back in the night, meaning he would have to compete with headlining sets from Red Hot Chili Peppers and Avicii sets. The promise of such intimacy and emotion were enough, though, to draw an audience. “I am grateful for that love,” he said, and the crowd roared.
Frank Ocean “Bad Religion” At Lollapalooza [RapRadar]
Lollapalooza Day One Recap: Raging Teens, Raging Heat And The Glorious Black Keys
Lollapalooza Evacuated: Lightning, Torrential Rain, Pouting Ensues
Lollapalooza Day Two Recap: Chicago Showers Bring Mud Madness
Frank Ocean‘s summer in the spotlight continues today with the release of photos from a new sitting with photographer to the hip and powerful, Terry Richardson. Ocean has joined his Odd Future brethren on visits to the studio past, notably the time they shot their epic and free-whiling “Oldie” video (super cute best-friend stuff, but probably NSFW if you’re without headphones today), and more recently to shoot the XXL spread that resulted in these beautiful and intimate pre-Channel Orange shots of Ocean. Back in New York again last week for a coupling of Odd Future and Frank Ocean shows, the boys sure enough showed up once more at Uncle Terry’s for another raucous free-style session and shoot. Today, Richardson posted some of that day’s outtakes to his Diary. Ocean in his new favorite red, white and blue handkerchief, a shirtless Tyler making mischief, and Earl Sweatshirt back in the mix — Wolf Gang’s all there! And two things are for sure: these boys have a ton fun together, and Richardson knows how to capture it all.
Check out their freestyle below (Ocean comes in at the end, leaving us to wonder what he was up to that whole time! And again, we warn: lots of “mature” language), and browse the gallery of images below or on Terry’s Diary.
The 2012 MTV Video Music Award nominations are in, and this year and among the nominees are the usual suspects (Katy Perry, Maroon 5, Usher, Justin Bieber, Kanye West), the internet raised (Carly Rae Jepsen, Gotye, Childish Gambino, Lana Del Rey), strong women (M.I.A., Nicki Minaj, Beyoncé), fresh faces (A$AP Rocky, Frank Ocean) and boy bands (One Direction, The Wanted). And all are led by Drake and Rihanna, with five nods a piece, who picked up four for their “Take Care” video (Video of the Year, Best Male Video, Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography) and who will face off for Video of the Year (Drake’s “Take Care” versus Rihanna’s “We Found Love”). Quite the crew, don’t you think?
The show will live on September 6th at 8 p.m. EST from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, and it will feature performances from Alicia Keys and One Direction, assuring that viewers will be the real winners that night.
See all the nominees in all the categories below:
It’s a good thing we’re not Nas. With all the good news he’s had recently, we’re not so sure we could resist the temptation of celebratory cocktails every night. After the highly anticipated Life Is Good lived up to the hype, the numbers are in. Nasir Jones’ 10th album topped the Billboard 200 at No. 1 making this his fifth number one. According to Nielsen SoundScan, Life Is Good sold 149,000 in its first week, which is more than pop stars Usher (128,000) and Chris Brown (134,000) debuted. Don’t call it a comeback; because if you’ve paid attention, the Queens legend never really left. Read more…
Six years ago Nas‘ conviction on the state of hip-hop–he believed it was dead–left several of his peers disgruntled and defensive. Ticking rap heads off aside, Hip Hop Is Dead charted at No. 1. How’s that for a non-response to the critics? On the day of his 10th album release for Life Is Good, VH1 talked with the master storyteller to find out what he thought about hip-hop today. Obviously the backlash years ago didn’t phase him because he said if he felt the genre was in trouble again, he’d say it. Again. Although he doesn’t think it’s dead right now, he thinks it has died many deaths. Read more…