Los Angeles, CA

Frank Ocean has spilled his guts on the last year in a rare interview with the New York Times. It’s not often that the singer speaks publicly, and that’s no accident. “Sometimes I’m fascinated with how famous my work could be while I’m not so famous,” Ocean says at the beginning of the conversation. It’s something he clearly thinks about a lot.

On the appeal of anonymity, Ocean says he’s “super-envious of the fact that Daft Punk can wear robot helmets and be one of the most famous bands in the world, while also understanding that will never be my situation. It’s too late.”

“I’ve gotten used to being Frank Ocean. A lot of people stopped me on the street when I hadn’t put music out in a while, literally would yell out of an Uber, “Frank, where the album?”

Despite winning two Grammys in 2013, Ocean has chosen to spurn the prestigious ceremony this time around — and didn’t even submit his music for consideration. “It just doesn’t seem to be representing very well for people who come from where I come from, and hold down what I hold down.”

“I think the infrastructure of the awarding system and the nomination system and screening system is dated. I’d rather this be my Colin Kaepernick moment for the Grammys than sit there in the audience.”

Ocean’s fans will know that Blondetook a lot longer than expected to come out before finally dropping this year, and Ocean goes some way to explaining what kept the record in the holster: “Sometimes I want to talk on a song and be angry, because I am angry. Then there’s always a part of me that remembers that this record lives past my being angry, and so do I really want to be angry about that?”

As for what comes next, Ocean is quick to point out that he’s the one in control.

“Because I’m not in a record deal, I don’t have to operate in an album format,” he said. “I can operate in half-a-song format.”

The 29-year-old also toys with exploring his talents beyond music, saying: “I believe that I’m one of the best in the world at what I do, and that’s all I’ve ever wanted to be,” he said. “It’s more interesting for me to figure out how to be superior in areas where I’m naïve, where I’m a novice.”