It's been a busy week for Frank Ocean, what with coming out over his sexuality, playing live on Jimmy Fallon's late night show, and prematurely releasing his major label debut album 'Channel Orange'. The album, which has garnered near-universal praise from critics, is beating early sales forecast, though it's unlikely to provide Ocean with his first number-one.
Billboard initially reported that 'Channel Orange' was expected to shift around 50,000 copies, putting it in line with Odd Future's 'The OF Tape Vol 2', which debuted at No.5 earlier this year. Tyler the Creator's 2011 album 'Goblin' went it at the same position with sales of 45,000. However, the decision to release Ocean's album early on iTunes appears to have paid off and the latest predictions put 'Channel Orange' at between 100,000 and 120,000, enough to see it secure the No.2 spot. If those sales come to fruition, Ocean wouldn't be too far off the pace set by Chris Brown, whose fifth record 'Fortune' snagged the No.1 spot with sales of 135,000 last week. This week, the top spot is likely to be taken up by the Zac Brown Band's latest record 'Uncaged', though Ocean's sales are even more impressive considering major retailer Target chose not to stock the disc because of its early iTunes release.
Last week, Frank Ocean published a letter on his Tumblr page revealing that his first love was a man. Luminaries of the rap and R&B world have since come out in support of the star, most notably Beyonce and Busta Rhymes. We here at Contactmusic.com gave 'Channel Orange' a big thumbs up, highlighting the track Bad Religion as being "as chilling on record as it was to witness Ocean facing his public, in the midst of the media furore that had been escalated around him".