Did Odd Future's Frank Ocean Come Out?
By Jerry Portwood
We already profiled Odd Future's Syd the Kyd, the openly lesbian member of the hip-hop group, and she explained the group's focus is to be truth-tellers. "We’re just a group of kids who make mistakes," she said, "and rather than lying about them, we use the truth to tell other people, people our age, ‘Know that you’re gonna make mistakes. Shit isn’t gonna be perfect. If you need to scream at somebody, do it and apologize later.’ We try to be as honest as possible.”
Now, after rumors that Frank Ocean came out as gay or bisexual on his latest solo album, Channel Orange, the 24-year-old member of Odd Future (and Kanye West's protegé) has posted a statement to his Tumblr that explains that his first love was a man and how it changed him forever.
"4 summers ago, I met somebody. I was 19 years old. He was too. We spent that summer, and the summer after, together.
"By the time I realized I was in love, it was malignant. It was hopeless. There was no escaping, no negotiating with the feeling. No choice. It was my first love, it changed my life."
Some in the hip-hop community say this is a landmark since he's one of the first artists to come out about his sexuality.
Russell Simmons wrote a statement of support for Ocean on his website Global Grind, lauding the up-and-coming talent for his bravery.
"Today is a big day for hip-hop. It is a day that will define who we really are. How compassionate will we be? How loving can we be? How inclusive are we?" he wrote.
"I am profoundly moved by the courage and honesty of Frank Ocean. Your decision to go public about your sexual orientation gives hope and light to so many young people still living in fear. These types of secrets should not matter anymore.
"His gifts are undeniable. His talent, enormous. His bravery, incredible. ... Frank, we thank you. We support you. We love you."
Ocean's bandmate, Tyler the Creator, also expressed his support, we think. In his Twitter, he wrote:
"Fucking Finally Sus Boy @frank_ocean Hahahaha, You Still Aint Got No Bitches Hahaha My Nigga Dawg. My Big Brother Finally Fucking Did That. Proud Of That Nigga Cause I Know That Shit Is Difficult Or Whatever. Anyway. Im A Toilet."
Ocean has not clarified his current relationship status.