Frank Ocean’s Disaster at Coachella 2023


Barbara Guerrero

Many listeners to Frank Ocean were disappointed by his departure.

Nael Alzalde

What happened?

Coachella, one of the most successful, most coveted, and notable music festivals in the whole world, located in Indio, California, debuted their 2023 line up on January 10th, 2023. Having headliners that are current musical industry giants like Blackpink, Gorillaz, Bad Bunny, Rosalía, Burna Boy, Kali Uchis, and Metro Boomin. Fan favorites like Björk, FKJ, Pusha T, SG Lewis, Kaytranada, TV Girl, Bakar, Porter Robinson, DPR LIVE, and DPR IAN were set to perform at Coachella. However, one name stood out amongst the rest, and that was Frank Ocean. 

Frank Ocean, or Christopher Edward Breaux, is a fan-favorite, loved by many through his certified platinum album Blonde and his debut album Channel Orange. Although Breaux has not put out much music lately, his category demonstrates his vision of technicality, rhythm, vocals, and so on. Every Frank Ocean fan was excited to see him, whether it was through Coachella’s live stream of the headliners or in person, people were anxiously awaiting for Frank Ocean to perform. The last time he performed was a staggering 4 years ago in Raleigh, North Carolina. His last festival performance took place a whopping 6 years ago at Flow Festival in Helsinki, Uusimaa, Finland.

Fast Forward to the day of Frank’s performance, April 16th, 2023. Around 2 hours before Frank Ocean was about to perform, YouTube announced that Frank Ocean’s performance was not going to be streamed. Chaos would ensue due to the mob of angry fans who were waiting for Breaux to perform. People tried to find every alternate to Coachella’s live stream in order to see the performance, going to people’s Instagram and TikTok live streams that were actually at Coachella. To add insult to injury, the performance was delayed by an hour from 10 pm PST to 11 pm PST, due to Breaux’s last minute requirement to remove a set piece from his stage, an ice skating rink that he couldn’t perform on due to two fractures and a sprain in his left leg. That would be the end of the disaster, but to make matters worse, when it was time for Breaux to perform, he only sang around 3 songs, spent most of the time not visible on stage, and only performed in tribute to his brother.

As of April 19th, 2023, Frank Ocean has decided to drop out of Coachella’s 2nd week, leaving quite the disaster and Breaux receiving backlash for his handling of the situation.