Frank Ocean fans, our drought is over! Well, kind of. Drake released his album For All The Dogs on Oct. 6. The album features a ton of stars including Bad Bunny, J. Cole, SZA, 21 Savage, Rihanna (if you count a diss toward her as a feature), and Frank Ocean.
The album’s opening track, “Virginia Beach,” samples an unreleased Frank Ocean song from 2012 called “Wiseman.” You can clearly hear Ocean singing the lyrics “I bet your mother would be proud of you, ooh (You, you, you, oh) / I bet our mother would be proud of you, oh” at the beginning and end of the song. His vocals keep playing throughout the song under Drake’s verses. The singer sounds a little different in the sample than he does in the original version of “Wiseman.” His vocals are pitched up in “Virginia Beach” in typical Ocean fashion (listen to the beginning of “Self Control” for similar vibes). The blend between his and Drake’s vocals is just so good.
“Wiseman” was written in 2012 for the film Django Unchained, but it didn’t make the final cut. The film’s director, Quentin Tarantino, explained that the song “was truly lovely and poetic in every way, there just wasn’t a scene for it. I could have thrown it in quickly just to have it, but that’s not why he wrote it and not his intention. So I didn’t want to cheapen his effort. But, the song is fantastic, and when Frank decides to unleash it on the public, they’ll realize it then.” Ocean posted the song on Tumblr five days after the movie came out with the caption “django was ill without it.”
Fans started speculating that Ocean would be featured on Drake’s album after the rapper posted an Instagram Story in August 2023 showing his 2022 reissue vinyl copy of Ocean’s album Blonde.
The rapper is an Ocean superfan: he bought a chain worth $1,898,000 from Ocean’s jewelry brand, Homer. Sampling the notoriously MIA singer is the pair’s first step toward an actual collab.
I can only imagine how hard Drake was fanboying when he wrote “Virginia Beach.” The song is technically the first “new” music Ocean has released since 2016, and fans couldn’t be happier to hear his voice again.
Here’s hoping Drake can convince Ocean to release a follow-up album to Blonde sometime soon!