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Stop What You're Doing: Frank Ocean Released a "Moon River" Cover

The 60s ballad classic, originally performed by Audrey Hepburn, just got a lot lovelier.
Lauren O'Neill
London, GB

Thought you could just get away with having an ordinary Thursday with no gaping emotional blips, did you? Well, Frank Ocean has other plans for you. On his Blonded YouTube channel, he just dropped a cover of the American ballad "Moon River," and I can really only describe it as utterly beautiful. That's… that's just what it is.

It's easy to be hyperbolic about Frank Ocean, considering the profile and status that he's build over the past few years. But I beg, try listen to this "Moon River" version (above) without tears welling up in your eyes?? If you can, tell me your secrets. Built from a collage of vocal lines – sometimes layered, sometimes not – against sparse, smudged guitar, the song sounds like how looking at a kaleidoscope feels.

It's warm, and rich, and is also a perfectly idiosyncratic take on the Henry Mancini and Johnny Mercer song, which since first sung by Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's, has become an American standard covered by the likes of Sinatra and Aretha Franklin. Despite, and even perhaps because of, its simplicity, it's a heavyweight of a track, all personal reflection and oneness with nature, which is tough to do justice to. Quite clearly, Frank Ocean was up to the task. He's one of the greats. Someone get me a goddamn tissue though.

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