Entertainment: Pop Hitmaker Frank Dukes Retires Moniker Ahead of ‘New Chapter’

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Producer Frank Dukes announced his retirement in a written letter to fans, posted this morning to his social media accounts. In the letter, which was provided in advance exclusively to Billboard, Dukes — born Adam King (pronounced and often spelled: “Ging”) Feeney — paid tribute to how far he has come over the last 20 years, from “making beats in his parents’ basement” in Toronto at age 17 to producing hits with a genre-spanning set of stars, including The Weeknd, Rosalía, Drake and many more.

“I was venturing off into water slightly deeper than I was capable of swimming in,” he wrote in the letter about his early career. “Whenever I started to lose that feeling, something new came along and restored it.” He continued to say that given the level of commercial success he has achieved — which includes hits like “Havana” by Camila Cabello, “Congratulations” by Post Malone, and “Chanel” by Frank Ocean — his efforts began feeling comfortable. “I knew to find that feeling of excitement again, I had to reevaluate.”

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The news comes as a surprise, considering the artist/producer dropped his first music under the name Frank Dukes just earlier this week. According to a press release about the new project, Dukes was “finally releasing music under his own producer moniker for the first time in the form of a beat tape.” Dubbed The Way of Ging, the project was released as a set of NFTs and bidding on crypto-marketplace OpenSea for Ging is still ongoing, with plans of closing on Tuesday, Nov. 23. The project includes the sale of its individual tracks as NFTs, paired with visual art also made by Dukes. Eerily, the artist/producer titled its final track as “A Funeral for a Prince.” Dukes also released a video earlier this week to social media captioned, “The Way of Ging. The beginning of the end,” featuring footage of dying flowers and a funeral scene.

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Another potential foreshadowing? Dukes signed off his hand-written note announcing the retirement of the Dukes monicker as “Ging,” reference to his middle name and his nickname among close friends and family, indicating a new identity.

Later in the letter, the artist/producer noted that after taking “inventory of [his] career” he began making his own art which he calls “an exploration that was led once again by excitement… the same feeling I had when creating music in my parents’ basement at 17 years old.” However, he admitted that new creative strength was something he “no longer identified with as Frank Dukes.”

Though the future remains unclear, the retirement announcement of the Frank Dukes name seemed to be more of a symbolic moving on from a past phase than it did a full-fledged goodbye to music, as the letter indicated more music is on the way. “I am more excited about music than I have ever been,” the artist/producer admitted.

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Along with the note, he teased a “new chapter” and invited fans to click onto a site titled “The Ghost of Frank Dukes,” a simple landing page featuring only a drawing of a ghost and a link to join a Discord channel.

Read the full letter below:

It’s been 20 years since I starting making music as Frank Dukes. The 17 year old kid making beats in his parents’ basement could never have dreamt of the places music has taken me over the course of my career.

My explorations have always been led by a feeling of excitement and curiosity. I constantly felt like I was venturing off into water slightly deeper than I was capable of swimming in and, as my career progressed, whenever I started to lose that feeling something new came along and restored it.

When I realized a level of commercial success I never imagined, I began to feel comfortable in the water. After achieving everything I thought I wanted, the comfort felt different than it had before. I knew to find that feeling of excitement again I had to reevaluate.

As I took inventory of my career, it started a chain reaction that affected all parts of my life, which changed dramatically. I made changes I never thought I could. I turned to all the things I’d shied away from my whole life and I changed as a result of it. I began making my own art: an exploration that was led once again by excitement. It felt like deja vu — the same feeling I had when creating music in my parents’ basement at 17 years old. It was a familiar feeling but one that I no longer identified with as Frank Dukes.

Today, I announce my retirement as Frank Dukes. I’d like to thank all the incredible artists, musicians, producers, managers, songwriters and anyone who supported or believed in me throughout the span of my 20 year career. I would not be who I am with you all. I am more excited about music than I have ever been. This is the end of one chapter but also the beginning of a whole new one.

With Love,

⁃    Ging
P.S. The ghost lives

ghostoffrankdukes.com

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