Anticipation was running high as Frank Ocean capped off Day 2 of FYF Fest in Los Angeles on Saturday (July 22). For his first performance in the U.S. in three years, the reclusive crooner didn’t disappoint, delivering a captivating cinematic experience—complete with Brad Pitt cameo—to a sold-out crowd at Exposition Park.
Wearing an “Instant Karma” Nike T-shirt, sequined pink and green Converse sneakers, and isolation headphones, Ocean took the stage at 11:15 p.m. in a recording studio setup, surrounded by his band members. Director Spike Jonze filmed the performance, which was broadcast in a vintage lo-fi style on the giant screens.
With a disco ball perched above the stage, the Grammy winner opened with “Solo” off last year’s acclaimed Blonde before performing a trio of tracks from Blonded Radio—”Chanel,” “Lens,” and “Biking.” He also touched on his Endless visual album with “Comme des Garçons.”
Ever the perfectionist, Ocean was unhappy with the sequence during “Good Guy” and opted to start over. “This is my fourth show back in so many years,” said the singer, who canceled his headlining set at FYF two years ago. “I want to thank ya’ll for trusting me tonight. Some shit might get fucked up so be patient with your boy and we’ll try it again.”
The biggest surprise of the evening came when he performed “Close to You,” a cover of Stevie Wonder’s rendition of The Carpenters’ song, which appears on Blonde. While he sat at the piano, Brad Pitt appeared near the side of the stage, taking a phone call as cameras captured Ocean serenading him.
Earlier this year, the actor expressed his love for Ocean in a GQ interview. “I’ve been listening to a lot of Frank Ocean. I find this young man so special,” he told the magazine. “Talk about getting to the raw truth. He’s painfully honest. He’s very, very special.”
Other highlights came when Ocean debuted a cover of Steve Monite’s 1984 disco song “Only You,” which he plans to release on a future episode of Blonded Radio. “Only you can put out this fire,” sang Ocean during his upbeat rendition.
The evening continued with fan favorites like “Thinkin Bout You,” “Nights,” “Pink + White,” and the closer “Nikes,” for which lyrics were displayed on screen in karaoke style with Hello Kitty graphics.
“I’m not him but I’ll mean something to you / I’ll mean something to you,” he sang before exiting the stage, leaving more than a lasting impression.
In addition to Ocean, Day 2 of FYF Fest featured performances from Erykah Badu and A Tribe Called Quest in their final Los Angeles show. Day 3 continues today with Solange, Run the Jewels, Kehlani, 6LACK, and Nine Inch Nails.