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Frank Ocean fans – and maybe none more so than Kanye West – were disappointed at the recent news that neither of his two new albums are up for Grammys next year.
Industry rumours abounded that someone in Ocean’s camp had missed the submission deadline, but the elusive artist has put that theory to rest in a rare interview with the New York Times.
In fact, it was Frank himself that decided not to enter Blonde or Endless for consideration at the annual music industry awards as a rebellious move.
“That institution certainly has nostalgic importance,” he said. “It just doesn’t seem to be representing very well for people who come from where I come from, and hold down what I hold down.
“I think the infrastructure of the awarding system and the nomination system and screening system is dated. I’d rather this be my Colin Kaepernick moment for the Grammys than sit there in the audience.”
By “Colin Kaepernick moment”, Ocean is referring to the US NFL player from the San Francisco 49ers, who takes a knee rather than standing and signing the American national anthem at games to protest the unequal treatment of black people in his country. “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color,” he explained of his protest.
It looks like next year’s Grammys will not only be skipped by Ocean but Kanye West too, who vowed to boycott the awards ceremony if Ocean wasn’t nominated – and we all know how much Kanye West loves attention and accolades.
If he wasn’t already one of the coolest and most original artists of our time, Frank Ocean just cemented his position by not caring what kind of mainstream recognition he receives for his work. It’s all about the music, man.