Frank Ocean Disappoints at Coachella Weekend 1

A large screen decorated the stage, cutting off most of the view of Frank Ocean in person.

A large screen decorated the stage, cutting off most of the view of Frank Ocean in person.

Katelyn Ruggles, Editor-in-Chief

On January 10th, the Coachella lineup was announced, and people were ecstatic to see Frank Ocean headlining both weekends of the festival, being his first live performance in seven years. Frank Ocean has had some personal issues, including his brother passing away in August of 2020, causing him to take a break from performing and producing music. However, his loyal fan base continued supporting him and were highly anticipating his return to live performances. 


Being his first performance in seven years, people from across the country bought tickets and arranged flights and hotels so that they can attend Coachella just to see Frank Ocean. As a headliner, he has one of the longest set lists, being about 90 minutes, and will perform on one of the largest stages at the festival. Headline performers are the most popular artists at the festival, usually the ones bringing in the crowds of people and selling out the festivals. People lined up at the gates at 12 PM, sprinting to get a front row view at Ocean’s performance which wasn’t until 8 PM that night. 


As the began, people became wary of Frank Ocean was really meant to perform, merchandise signs were displayed, saying “No Frank Ocean Merchandise” and his performance was not scheduled to be streamed on the official You Tube live stream of the festival.


His performance started out on the wrong foot, coming out an hour late to his stage. Not only that, he only sang six of his songs, with the rest just being played on the speakers while the crowd and Frank just listened along. He also had a DJ come out in the middle of his set and play rave music, which is pretty unusual to do during a performance. People in the audience reported that he had long, awkward pauses of silence between songs and would rarely come out onto the stage to sing, staying backstage for most of the performance. Due to his late arrival, his performance was cut off short due to curfew. It later came out that he was not to perform his set list right before he was about to go on stage, explaining the organization of the whole event. 


With the high expectation that came with this performance, of course many people were highly disappointed. People took to social media to complain about the stage, posting videos of people in the crowds leaving before Frank Ocean was done performing. Spending thousands of dollars to see Ocean perform, many of his fans were hurt and felt cheated. Jenna Roncevich (12) comments on the event, saying “Even though I am not a huge Frank Ocean fan, if an artist I really loved did what Frank did, I would be really upset.” 

Even though I am not a huge Frank Ocean fan, if an artist I really loved did what Frank did, I would be really upset.”

— Jenna Roncevich

Some fans continue to defend him, bringing up his past traumatic accidents, saying that he is still grieving and not in the best state of mind to perform. Frank Ocean also has a track record of having bad performance anxiety, rarely doing live performances and concerts in general. However, with all this in mind, most fans say that Frank Ocean agreed to headline this festival and knew what he was getting into. While his past may hinder his performance abilities, he should have recognized that and not agreed to perform. It was also released that he had an unexpected ankle injury before the performance, making it difficult for him to put on a big performance. However, many artists have continued to put on shows with an injury, sitting in a chair and simply singing their songs. 

Coachella released a statement saying that Ocean decided to pull out of weekend two on doctors orders because of his fractured leg, being replaced by Blink 182. Of course, this news is a huge let down to Frank Ocean fans everywhere, but his health is more important than any performance.