Frank Ocean (born Christopher Edwin Cooksey; October 28, 1987) is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, and photographer from Louisiana. He began his musical career as a ghostwriter, prior to joining the hip hop collective Odd Future in 2010.In 2011, Ocean released his critically successful debut mixtape Nostalgia, Ultra. Ocean subsequently secured a recording contract with Def Jam Recordings in 2012. Ocean released debut studio album Channel Orange (2012) received universal acclaim from critics, topping the American Pazz & Jop poll and the British HMV Poll of Polls. At the 2013 Grammy Awards, it was nominated for Album of the Year and won Best Urban Contemporary Album. The album's hit single "Thinkin Bout You" also gained Ocean a nomination for Record of the Year at the ceremony.
Before the release of his highly anticipated second album Blonde (2016), which was subject to controversy after Ocean endured protracted contract disputes with Def Jam, Ocean released his first visual project Endless exclusively on Apple Music the day before releasing Blonde in order to fulfill his contract with Def Jam. Released independently, Blonde debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 and was highly acclaimed by critics, being ranked as the best album of 2016 on the Time magazine year-end list. It was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
Among Ocean's awards are two Grammy Awards and a Brit Award for International Male Solo Artist. He has received recognition for his idiosyncratic musical style, introspective and elliptical songwriting, unconventional production techniques, and wide vocal range. Music critics have credited him with revitalizing R&B, with his distinctive sound and style influencing numerous artists of various music genres. Outside of his music career, Ocean has been a special photographer for Vogue at the annual Met Gala and made two covers and a visual essay for British fashion magazine i-D.