I've written about gays in hip hop several times over the years. To put it bluntly, if 10% of all people are homosexual, why are none of them in hip hop? Answer: because in hip hop, everybody is in the closet.
Well, the final frontier of homosexuality just got a lot closer. In the rap community, lesbians are kinda cool, so when Syd the Kid of Odd Future offshoot The Internet came out as gay, it was important but it didn't lessen the cries of anti-gay slur because of the indiscriminate use of the word faggot. I am sick of telling people to take into account how the word is being used.
Well, that's that and Syd is a DJ. Bit what about Frank Ocean? An r&b guy on his way up up up, behind Odd Future's best samples, behind Tyler's masterpiece "She". Frank Ocean came out as a gay man on July 3rd, and I will get to him in a second, but how does Sara Quinn gay baiting nitwit of Tegan and Sara explain it now Odd Future have as many openly gay members as they do? It is time "cunt", "nigger" and "faggot" be taken out of quarantine. The truth is, if you are being lynched, raped or castrated, the least of your worries is what they meant when they slurred you. For fuck's sake, Lenny Bruce began and ended the conversation with his "How many kikes in the audience"
Well, it is easy to be cavalier when it isn't you and out wouldn't much matter anyway. For Frank Ocean, these are dangerous waters and will be interesting to see how his career plays out. Among, the fans I mean, I'm not certain but I don't think the hip hop community cares that much. But an R&B man? Think of Luther Vandross or Teddy Pendergrass, neither ever came out. Eddie Murphy. Never has a sound relied more on the desired factor so much. Michael Jackson. Frank Ocean is indeed a free man and I don't think it will cost him too much but I can't read the black community in 2012. It is truly brave, this is Frank's first album, now the hijacking of Watch The Throne is over, this is the one he will be building his career. I love him, I have a tix to see him at T5 (though, Tyler is playing the same day and Best Buy so I will probably miss it) but his songs are so off center, I am not sure if he is one of the greats. Still listening to "Analog 2" or the purely brilliant "Swim Good" it is exceedingly hard to deny…
It is actually a real shame that Ocean had to keep his sexual preference quiet for so long. As you may note below, friends were keeping it a secret for him. Finally, Ocean wrote about it coming in which he writes about his first love, a man he met at the beach in 2008. This is a beautiful story, well done Frank.
"Whoever you are, wherever you are..I'm starting to think we're a lot alike. Human beings spinning on blackness. All wanting to be seen, touched, heard, paid attention to. My loved ones are everything to me here. In the last year or 3 I've screed at my creator, screamed at the clouds in the sky, for some explanation. Mercy maybe. For peace of mind to rain like manna somehow. 4 summers ago, I met somebody. I was 19 years old. He was too. We spend that summer, and the summer after, together. Everyday almost. And on the days we were together, time would glide. Most of the day I'd see him, and his smile. I'd hear his conversation and his silence…until it was time to sleep. Sleep I would often share with him. 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. Back then, my mind would wander to the women I had been with, the ones I cared for and thought I was in love with. I reminisced about the sentimental songs I enjoyed when I was a teenager..the ones I played when I experienced a girlfriend for the first time. I realized they were written in a language I did not yet speak. I realized too much, too quickly. Imagine being thrown from a plane. I wasn't in a plane though. I was in a Nissan Naxima, the same car I packed up with bags and drove to Los Angeles in. I sat there and told my friend how I felt. I wept as the words left my mouth. I grieved for them, knowing I could never take them back for myself. He patted my back. He said kind things. He did his best, but he wouldn't admit the same. He had to go back inside soon, it was late and his girlfriend was waiting for him upstairs. He wouldn't tell me the truth about his feeling for me for another 3 years. I felt like I'd only imagined reciprocity for years. Now image being thrown from a cliff. No, I wasn't on a cliff, I was still in my car telling myself it was gonna be fine and to take deep breaths. I took the breaths and carried on. I kept up a peculiar friendship with him because I couldn't imagine keeping up my life without him. I struggled to master myself and my emotions. I wasn't always successful.