Deeper Listen: Frank Ocean’s Strawberry Swing

A Coldplay sample and an Armageddon Story,

can you call this R&B?

Frank Ocean’s Strawberry Swing

Childish optimism is how the tape starts off, refreshing. “if an atom bomb falls on my heart. . .”

I have to retract my original interpretation of this song. I’ve listened with renewed ears and have decided that it is not optimistic in the least.

Ocean begins the first verse with nothing but audio beauty. Starting the song off in the past, he discusses the innocence of him, a lover, and the world while they were kids:

when we were kids we hand painted strawberries on a swing.

Then Ocean speeds up the song to current times. He still claims to be innocent now, but the world has lost its innocence:

i’m still kicking it
i’m daydreaming
on a strawberry swing
the entire earth is fighting
all the world is at its end

Ocean, realizing the fragile state of the world, goes on give his personal “if anything ever happens to me” statement:

just in case
an atom bomb
comes falling on my lawn
i should say
and you should hear
i’ve loved
i’ve loved the good times here
i’ve loved our good times here

Frank Ocean’s Strawberry Swing is not optimistic in the least bit, it’s actually a song rooted in realism and dipped in depression. He sings to us: the world is crazy and nothing we can do can stop the greater powers that be, World War III could start tomorrow. He does however remind us of what we do have control over: our own lives, our love, and our happiness

In a world where black sex songs from Trey, Chris, and Mr.Raymond reign supreme it’s nice to have a colorful dark lullaby for a change.

Download his mixtape “Nostalgia, ULTRA” here:


About Nia Keturah

wife of art, lover of music, and daughter of God.
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3 Responses to Deeper Listen: Frank Ocean’s Strawberry Swing

  1. Frank Ocean – Strawberry Swing (The End)

  2. Pingback: Strawberry Swing Inspiration Video | Those DeLaLuz

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