The rapid pace of major label success has taken its toll: on Friday, singer-songwriting adept Frank Ocean received the disappointing diagnosis of a small vocal cord tear, thereby halting his sold-out debut Australian tour.
Ocean got his start ghostwriting for artists including Justin Bieber and John Legend, before joining Tyler, The Creator’s hip hop collective Odd Future. The now 25-year-old singer rocketed to stardom after the success of his 2011 debut mixtape Nostalgia, Ultra., and solidified his place in American pop culture with a smash-hit second album Channel Orange, which explored deep emotional territory with grace and authenticity.
The day after the tour’s first show in Melbourne ended with eyebrow-raising reports of off-key singing, Ocean sought medical help. A statement by tour promoter Live Nation reads:
After last night’s concert…it was necessary to seek medical advice due to vocal issues Frank Ocean experienced during the show. It has subsequently been confirmed that Frank has suffered a small tear to one of his vocal cords and has received medical advice that he must rest his voice.
Remaining tour dates have been canceled, but the LiveNation promises a return Down Under “as soon as is practical.”
UPDATE 7/30: Ouch! Ocean has added more dates to the list of canceled appearances, including his much anticipated headline appearance at Drake’s OVO Fest on August 4—which bigtime bumped the two-day festival down to one—as well as the Montreal Osheaga Festival, which spans August 2-4, and where promoters are offering refunds to anyone who no longer wants to attend.