Home > Culture and Style, Music Reviews > Frank Ocean, There Will Be Tears

Frank Ocean, There Will Be Tears

Dear Vocal Effects,

It’s been a while.

You were used well by Peter Frampton in Do You Feel Like I Do a good 30 years ago but ever since then you kind of turned into a novelty–and then T-Pain showed up and all this drama happened, just..take my word for it..you’ve seen better days. You’re washed up.

You’re either over used or used incorrectly.

Hey now..

Oh c’mon, don’t be sad, Vocal Effects.  I actually have some good news!  You were fantastic on the Frank Ocean track There Will Be Tears.

I don’t know what it is, but the muffled electronica intertwined with Mr. Hudson’s crooning, swooning, british flavor is perfection to my ear drums.

Hudson lays down an amazing introduction sampled from Straight No Chaser and then Ocean hits us with his narrative singing and emotional lyrics. The song tells the story of Oceans dead beat and absent dad and his “player” grandfather who ending up leaving him as well–but this time due to death rather than lack of parenting.

Ocean then goes on to sing about how both his friends and society tell him that he shouldn’t cry and be sad–especially when their folks have abandoned them too–but Ocean counteracts their comments with a simple, “yeah, yeah I can.”

The track is short, sweet and powerful.

It contains great content and a perfectly placed sample of Mr. Hudson’s Straight No Chaser. The Hudson/Ocean collaboration is reminiscent of the 2000 Eminem/Dido collaboration where Eminem sampled Dido’s Thank You in his track Stan.

The similarities arise in the unique voices of both Dido and Hudson, as well as how the samples were used–sparsely, effectively but also hauntingly.

And while speaking on the production–the effects in the track are used at all the right places and all the right sections. Not just in There Will Be Tears but throughout Oceans entire album.

So Vocal Effects, take note of how you were used in this piece and..you know.. do that more often. You can also forward this letter to Lyrics, Song Structure and Production.

They could probably take some pointers from this track too.



Image Courtesy of Planet Ill.

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