Christopher Francis Ocean better known by his stage name Frank Ocean, is an American singer-songwriter from New Orleans, Louisiana. Ocean’s early career was as a ghostwriter for artists such as Brandy, Justin Bieber, and John Legend. In 2010, he became a member of alternative hip hop collective OFWGKTA, and his debut mixtape, Nostalgia, Ultra, was released the following year to critical acclaim. The singles “Novacane” and “Swim Good” both achieved chart success. The mixtape gained the interest of recording artists such as Kanye West, Beyoncé Knowles and Jay-Z, and he consequently appeared on West and Jay-Z’s Watch the Throne album.
In 2012, Ocean finished second place in the BBC’s Sound of 2012 poll, and appeared at Coachella and Lollapalooza festivals at the conclusion of his 2012 Summer Tour. His debut studio album, Channel Orange, was released in July 2012, promoted with three charting singles: “Thinkin Bout You”, “Pyramids”, and “Sweet Life”. Ocean wrote an open letter, intended for the liner notes on Channel Orange, that would preemptively address speculation about his same-sex attraction; he instead blogged it on Tumblr. Ocean became one of the first major African-American music artists to announce that he had fallen in love with someone of the same sex, notable because the music scene is known for homophobia.