Kesha Gives First Interview Since Filing Dr. Luke Lawsuit

For all intents and purposes, Kesha lost her lawsuit against Dr. Luke. A judge dismissed most of her civil complaints and the sexual assault claims were dropped. Her appeals are ongoing, as is Luke’s defamation countersuit. She’s still beholden to her contract with his Kemosabe imprint. But today, she offers her first public statements on the case in a lengthy New York Times Magazine feature, her first interview since filing the lawsuit in 2014. (UPDATE: Here’s the response from Dr. Luke’s lawyer.)

“I was taking back my strength, and I was taking back my voice, and taking back my power, taking back my body,” she said about the decision to 1) remove the dollar sign and 2) file a suit against her label boss and collaborator after her stint in rehab for an eating disorder in 2014. “I’m just taking back my [expletive] life.”

In addition to touching on her decision to take Dr. Luke to court, the story provided some details on her new music. She confirmed that she turned in 22 songs to Sony over the summer. But Kesha’s team claims the label “didn’t provide any meaningful feedback until after a judge intervened in late August.” (The story includes a key little tidbit that could go a long way toward explaining why the battle for her new material has been a stalemate: “There’s a clause in her original contract that insists she remain ‘reasonably consistent in concept and style to the artistic concept and style’ of the original recordings.”) The star also revealed she worked with Ben Folds on a song called “Rainbow,” while finished tracks include “Hunt You Down” (“a real country song”), “Rosé,” and “Learn To Let It Go.” But the writer says “Rainbow” is the one. “If it ever emerges from private listenings, it will be your favorite Kesha song.”

Additionally, Sony told the writer that Kesha and Kemosabe came to an agreement about her working with a dozen “outside producers,” and that she’d be able “to record without any connection, involvement or interaction with Luke whatsoever.” Representatives for Kesha told the writer this was bunk. Luke’s lawyer added that Kesha has always been welcome to record and “can be in a recording studio as early as this week.”

It’s an enlightening read about an enraging story, with all that frustration encapsulated in this passage:

“Our legal system isn’t set up to deal with a case like Lukasz Gottwald p/k/a Dr. Luke, Kasz Money, Inc. and Prescriptions Songs, L.L.C. v. Kesha Rose Sebert p/k/a Kesha: a rape claim that’s past its sell-by date, which has turned into a banal contract dispute. Kesha will not relent on her accusations, and Dr. Luke won’t relent on his defamation suit. How could they settle? Settling will only make either of them look as if they lied.”

Read the whole piece here.

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