Since 2011’s Nostalgia, Ultra, Frank Ocean has been helping people all over the world get through some things. Sexuality, love, breakups, the perfect IG caption and so on. Ocean is that kind of songwriter where every abstract idea can be fleshed out to mean something beyond its original intent. Beyonce calls herself a fan. Same for countless other celebrities who tout the Blonde singer-songwriter as one of a kind.
Add Brad Pitt’s name to that list.
In a lengthy cover story for GQ, the actor — and proud owner of a rather sad tornado tattoo — spoke at length about grappling with the effects of his divorce from Angelina Jolie, cutting back on drinking and ultimately looking to become a better man. At 53, with classic Hollywood good looks, he’s the perfect specimen for a Frank Ocean record. True enough, Pitt pays respect to the enigmatic singer for helping him navigate the murkiest waters of not only his career but his life.
“Pain tourism,” he calls the period of his life where he often played characters tortured by their own decisions and actions. “It was still an avoidance in some way. I just got R&B for the first time. R&B comes from great pain, but it’s a celebration. To me, it’s embracing what’s left.”
When pegged about his entry point, Pitt didn’t opt for the classics but settled right on the guy who made “Forrest Gump,” “Solo,” and “Self-Control,” to name a few. “I’ve been listening to a lot of Frank Ocean,” Pitt said. “I find this young man so special. Talk about getting to the raw truth. He’s painfully honest. He’s very, very special. I can’t find a bad one.”
The actor’s expanded R&B catalog has some pretty interesting choices such as Marvin Gaye’s divorce record, 1971’s Here, My Dear, which sent him down an “intense” road. Knowing that the guy from Fight Club has put himself through a chamber of emotional purity with Frank Ocean really drives home the realization that yes, even famous people are just like you and me.