We can thank Frank Ocean, not only for making a public statement that sweeps aside shadows and offers young fans another powerfully vulnerable star to admire and emulate, but for reminding us that while proudly declaring an identity can be a politically crucial gesture, often the human heart is not so sure-footed. The process of becoming and unbecoming, loving and losing, is what often makes for the most meaningful art.
Bloom is out next week!
The rapper from Odd Future, whose disappearance became a pop music mystery, speaks out on where he went: Coral Reef Academy, a therapeutic retreat for at-risk boys in Vaitele, outside of the Samoan capital of Apia:
As Odd Future became more popular, though, his absence was harder to ignore. While Ms. Harris remained largely silent, ‘Free Earl’ became a slogan, a hashtag, a mantra. Odd Future fans began to see her as an antagonist. At one point a threatening note was left on her door.
‘I could have never imagined in my wildest dreams that this decision to send him away to a school that had the kind of support for his emotional well-being that he needed would turn into a story about locking him away,’ she said. To explain her son’s absence, she added, ‘I would’ve had to have talked about his personal life in a way that I think would’ve been really unfair.’