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Frank Ocean Hits Election Day With Free Merch, Radio Show (Listen)

Frank Ocean hit Election Day 2018 hard, with a surprise episode of his Beats 1 show “Blonded Radio” and a round of pop-up shops in four cities to give away free merchandise to people who present evidence that they voted. A flyer posted on his Tumblr account reads, “Bring proof (a photo of you at the ballot) that you voted to any of the locations below and get some free merch. Because God bless America.”

The locations are in Miami, Atlanta, Houston and Dallas — selected to support the candidates Andrew Gillum (Florida), Stacey Abrams (Georgia) and Beto O’Rourke Texas) — and are specified on Ocean’s Tumblr page.

The flyer and the merchandise reference the “42%” — the non-voting segment of the population that is “the largest political group in America.” As Pitchfork points out, while the flyer asks for “a photo of you at the ballot,” voters in Texas, Georgia, and Florida are not allowed to take photos at the balloting area, so a photo outside of the polling place is probably the best a person can do.

At 9 a.m. ET/6 a.m. PT, Ocean aired his radio show in which he talked about the midterms, criticized gerrymandering and right-wing conspiracy theories and played 18 songs (playlist below), leading off with his own “”U-N-I-T-Y” and then ranging from current hip-hop (Playboi Carti, Valee, Beyonce and Jay-Z’s “Black Effect”) to alt-rock (Spoon, Durutti Column) to some older-school NYC hip-hop (Cam’ron, Jadakiss) and, of course, a couple of politically themed songs, Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson’s “We Almost Lost Detroit” and closing with the Honeydrippers’ “Impeach the President.”

Since the release of his “Blonde” and “Endless” albums in August of 2016, Ocean has dropped several stand-alone songs, most recently in August on the last episode of radio show, when he dropped a new song called “Provider.”

Still missing in action is a Spike Jonze-directed film of Ocean’s brief summer 2017 tour: While the “Being John Malkovich” director and a film crew were present at several of the tour’s dates and effect-laden images were broadcast on screens during the shows, no film (or even comment on it) has emerged. The most recent online discussion about it appears to be a Reddit conversation from July titled “1 year later: Frank Ocean + Spike Jonze – What the hell were they working on?

“blonded Midterms pt. 1”:

.     Frank Ocean: “U-N-I-T-Y”

.     Mk.gee: “You”

.     Arthur: “Sweet Memory”

.     Spoon: “Who Makes Your Money”

.     Gil Scott-Heron / Brian Jackson: “We Almost Lost Detroit”

.     The Durutti Column: “Sketch for a Summer”

.     Popcaan: “Superstar”

.     Jadakiss: “We Gonna Make It”

.     Valee: “Womp Womp” [ft. Jeremih]

.     Rico Nasty: “Hockey”

.     Don Toliver: “Issues”

.     KISH!: “Benzo!”

.     Retro X: “Etho” [ft. S.Boy]

.     La Goony Chonga: “Tira Tira” [ft. Black Kray]

.     Playboi Carti: “FlatBed Freestyle”

.     Beyoncé / JAY-Z: “BLACK EFFECT”

.     Cam’ron: “Losin’ Weight” [ft. Prodigy]

.     The Honeydrippers: “Impeach the President”



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