Kesha Is No Longer The Fun Girl: New York Times Interview

kesha-nytimes-interview
Photo: Jack Davison for The New York Times

UPDATE: Dr. Luke's legal team fired off a response to Kesha's New York Times interview.

Read the entire statement below via Billboard:

"The New York Times Magazine profile piece that ran today unfortunately has many inaccuracies.

This article is part of a continuing coordinated press campaign by Kesha to mislead the public, mischaracterize what has transpired over the last two years, and gain unwarranted sympathy.

Kesha filed a shock and awe complaint of alleged abuse against Luke Gottwald in 2014 -- for contract negotiation leverage. It backfired.

She never intended to prove her claims. She has voluntarily withdrawn her California complaint, after having her counterclaims in New York for alleged abuse dismissed.

Nevertheless, she continues to maliciously level false accusations in the press to attack our client.

The reality is that for well over two years, Kesha chose—and it was entirely her choice—not to provide her label with any music.

Kesha was always free to move forward with her music, and an album could have been released long ago had she done so.

She exiled herself.

It was not until months after the denial of her injunction motion – for the first time in June and July 2016--that Kesha started to provide the label with music.

She provided 22 recordings created without any label consultation which were not in compliance with her contract, were in various stages of development, and which Kesha’s own team acknowledged needed work. Then, and for the last several months, the label has been in discussions with Kesha and her team to choose the best music, create additional music, and work on the tracks created.

A&R representatives of both Kemosabe and RCA have provided Kesha with detailed feedback in writing and in person on the tracks she provided to help her further develop the material. Kesha has also agreed with Kemosabe and RCA on a list of producers who will work with her on these tracks, a studio has been reserved for these sessions, and a budget for certain work provided.

The creation of an album is a process, however what has clearly been communicated is that the aim is for a release date as early as possible. It is in the economic best interest of the label and Mr. Gottwald to put out a top selling album, and that takes time. In fact, the label suggested an early release of an advance Kesha track. It was Kesha’s team who rejected this proposal.

Kesha’s claim in the article that she has no ability to earn money outside of touring is completely rebutted by well documented public court records which apparently escaped the article’s attention."



EARLIER:

Kesha opens up to the New York Times in her first interview since filing suit against Dr. Luke; "I’m just taking back my f---ing life."

Where does Kesha go from here? She's still trying to figure that out, too. The "Tik Tok" singer is embroiled in a nasty sexual assault lawsuit against producer Dr. Luke that continues to progress in Luke's favor, so to expedite the creative process and release new music, she's breaking. Kesha dropped the lawsuit in California as well as the claims in her suit filed in New York and has since turned 22 songs in to RCA and Sony imprint label Kemosabe Records. She hopes to release new music, which Sony says she can do without any direct involvement with Dr. Luke, but her lawyers argue that he is still ultimately has the final say, and that's not sitting well with the pop star.

Kesha isn't sure where to go yet, but she knows where she's been. In a new interview with the New York Times, Kesha says she was pressured to market herself a certain way.

“I’m just fun,” she said recalling her former self. “That’s all I am. That’s it. ‘That’s all you are. That’s all you are.’ ”

She recalls removing the dollar sign from her name following a stint in rehab for an eating disorder, a manifestation of the inner turmoil she experienced following sexual abuse. “I was taking back my strength, and I was taking back my voice, and taking back my power, taking back my body. I’m just taking back my [expletive] life.”

Kesha was supposed to be fun. That’s what she says she was told when she began preparing songs for “Animal,” her debut album. “Something that was always told to me is: ‘You’re fun. We’re going to capitalize on that.’ ”

The music portrayed a party girl, and while Kesha was enjoying the fruits of her labor, she hadn't reached her full potential.

“To this day, I’ve never released a single that’s a true ballad, and I feel like those are the songs that balance out the perception of you, because you can be a fun girl. You can go and have a crazy night out, but you also, as a human being, have vulnerable emotions. You have love.”

In addition to grand detail surrounding her legal battle, including “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,” for the first time ever... Kesha is exploring a sound she's comfortable with.

At last, I was able to hear four of Kesha’s new songs. I went to an office in Manhattan and sat in a room and listened while two of her representatives looked on. Kesha told me that when the inspiration hits her with a song — a lyric, a hook, a melody, anything — she is struck dumb with it until she puts it down on paper, that the inspiration itself feels like a divine act. I heard “Hunt You Down,” which was a real country song with banjo and some real country sentiments: “If you [expletive] around, I’ll hunt you down.” I heard “Learn to Let It Go,” which sounded like something you’d hear in heavy rotation on radio with Kesha’s beautiful, low voice singing that a happy ending is up to you. I heard “Rosé,” a toast to an old boyfriend who has married. “The good things never last,” she sings.

But the song I want to tell you about most is “Rainbow.” If it ever emerges from private listenings, it will be your favorite Kesha song. It’s big and sweeping, and you can hear every instrument that Ben Folds and his associates played — it does recall a Beach Boys vibe, just as she wanted it to. And as Folds said, the way she sings the song is so rich and so real that it jerks you out of your expectation of a pop song. “I found a rainbow, rainbow, baby,” she sings. “Trust me, I know life is scary, but just put those colors on, girl, and come and paint the world with me tonight.” In the final section, her voice becomes stronger and more strained, and the effect is devastating. I asked to hear it three more times.

Read the full story here.

Thoughts? Let us know in Exhale.

And while you're at it... leave a comment and follow us on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram and subscribe to our YouTube channel.