Frank Ocean Pulls Out of Coachella Weekend 2
Frank Ocean will not be performing his scheduled headlining slot at Coachella this Sunday, a rep for the singer confirms to Variety. A source close to the situation says his spot will be taken by Blink-182.
The statement reads: “Frank Ocean will not be performing at weekend 2 of Coachella.
“After suffering an injury to his leg on festival grounds in the week leading up to weekend 1. Frank Ocean was unable to perform the intended show but was still intent on performing, and in 72 hours, the show was reworked out of necessity.
“On doctor’s advice, [Ocean] is not able to perform weekend 2 due to two fractures and a sprain in his left leg.”
The note concludes with a statement from Ocean: “‘It was chaotic. There is some beauty in chaos. It isn’t what I intended to show but I did enjoy being out there and I’ll see you soon.’ — Frank Ocean.”
The news comes after days of uproar around Ocean’s polarizing set during the festival’s first weekend, which was solid if uneven musically but marred by major production issues: An elaborate performance involving an ice rink and dozens of skaters was planned but suddenly called off. While multiple sources say the big production was abruptly canceled on Sunday — just hours before Ocean’s performance was to begin — because the singer decided he didn’t want to do it, the statement says that it was called off because of an ankle injury he’d suffered earlier in the week.
While recordings of the concert — which was not livestreamed, unlike most other sets during the festival — show that he performed innovative new arrangements of several of his songs, overall, the energy was low; he and the band were obscured by a battery of people walking in a circle around the stage (a revision of the original plan to have him surrounded by ice skaters); and the pacing was bizarre: a seemingly random DJ set was dropped into the the middle, leading many fans to think his performance was over. It also started an hour late, which sources say was due to the last-minute production change.
The original lineup of Blink-182 were surprise performers on the festival’s first weekend, making their first appearance together since singer-guitarist Tom DeLonge left the band in 2014. The band “wasted no time reembracing the juvenile, fun, ridiculous double-time punk-pop that made them breakthrough radio stars in the late ‘90s and early aughts,” Variety’s review says. “The band shared the same Jackass-style ease they did 20 years ago in their prime, with DeLonge and [bassist Mark] Hoppus cracking wise about genitals, the Dalai Llama and UTIs as they blasted through their set.” Although drummer Travis Barker hurt a finger earlier this year, forcing the postponement of the band’s tour, “there was no sign of injury here — his playing felt crisp and precise, and the band felt tight and rehearsed,” the review adds.
While fans hoping to see what would have been only Ocean’s second concert since 2017 may be disappointed, Coachella 2023 is still likely to end with a bang.
Variety will have more on the situation as it develops.
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