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Frank Ocean releases new songs ‘Dear April’ and ‘Cayendo’

The queer singer has dropped two laid-back acoustic tracks to welcome in April

By Tim Heap

Despite everything going on in the world, this week hasn’t been a bad one for new music from our queer favourites, with Frank Ocean adding not one but two tracks to our #Queerantine playlists today.

The former Odd Future singer has made acoustic versions of ‘Cayendo’ and ‘Dear April’ available on streaming services, after debuting them at his PrEP club night in New York last year.

They were made available as 7-inch vinyl releases, with remixes, but today is the first time they’ve been given a universal release.

In typical Ocean style, both tracks introspective, with ‘Cayendo’ sung partly in Spanish.

The 32-year-old Grammy winner released a couple of tracks last year, but hasn’t released an album since 2016’s Blonde, which was ranked among the year’s best records.

In an interview last year, he teased that the upcoming third album would have “Detroit, Chicago, techno, house, French electronic” influences and would be a “full motion picture fantasy”. He’s due to headline Coachella in October.

Ocean’s first album, Channel Orange, was released in 2012 to universal acclaim and coincided with him publishing an open letter on his Tumblr about unrequited feelings he’d had for another man aged 19.

After the announcement, he said: “I don’t know what happens now, and that’s alright. I don’t have any secrets I need kept anymore… I feel like a free man.”

His coming out was seen as a watershed moment for hip-hop culture, and drew support from the likes of Beyoncé and Jay-Z.

In 2016, following the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, he published an emotional essay to Tumblr, saying: “Many hate us and wish we didn’t exist. Many are annoyed by our wanting to be married like everyone else or use the correct restroom like everyone else.

“Many don’t see anything wrong with passing down the same old values that send thousands of kids into suicidal depression each year.

“So we say pride and we express love for who and what we are. Because who else will in earnest?”

In April last year, in an interview with Gayletter, Ocean revealed he was in a three-year relationship – a rare moment of candour from the singer who has largely presented as an elusive figure throughout his career.

For more of this week’s best queer music, check out Troye Sivan’s new track ‘Take Me Home’ and current cover star Orville Peck’s brooding ‘Summertime’.