Kesha’s new album, ‘Gag Order,’ pushes her private struggles to the forefront : NPR

Kesha attends an artwork exhibition curated by herself and Brian Roettinger to have a good time the discharge of Gag Order.

Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Pictures for ABA

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Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Pictures for ABA

Kesha attends an artwork exhibition curated by herself and Brian Roettinger to have a good time the discharge of Gag Order.

Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Pictures for ABA

Within the thick of tumultuous and public authorized battles, Kesha has launched a brand new album filled with the tensions of the latest years.

Who’s she? The singer and songwriter, previously often known as Ke$ha, burst onto the pop music scene within the early 2010s together with her hit dance songs like “TiK ToK,” “We R Who We R,” “Die Younger,” “Blow,” and extra.

  • She continued to interrupt into the Billboard Sizzling 100 prime 10 all through the years, racking up nominations at award reveals and turning into one of many greatest pop artists of the last decade.
  • However within the final decade, her profession was largely overshadowed by the bitter, drawn-out authorized battle with producer Dr. Luke and his report label.
  • Kesha’s newest album, Gag Order, produced by Rick Rubin, addresses the emotions and experiences of this inventive ordeal.

What is the massive deal? You’ll be able to’t assist however consider all Kesha has skilled whenever you take heed to the brand new album.

  • Dr. Luke, legally named Lukasz Gottwald, signed the singer when she was 18 years previous in 2005.
  • In October of 2014, Kesha filed a swimsuit towards Dr. Luke, accusing him of drugging, raping, and emotionally abusing her all through the years of their working relationship. He denied all allegations.
  • Gottwald countersued Kesha for defamation, and breach of contract, and the 2 have gone backwards and forwards over time, with the singer eager to terminate her contract.
  • Gag Order has been launched underneath Dr. Luke’s label.

Need extra on artists taking a stand? Hearken to Take into account This communicate to David Simon on AI, tv, and the WGA strike.

This video comprises profanity.

Kesha — “Residing In My Head” from the album Gag Order.


What are folks saying? NPR music’s Stephen Thompson and Ann Powers joined All Issues Thought of’s Ari Shapiro to debate the brand new album and the authorized battles:

Ann Powers, on her first impressions:

I actually worth artists who work to specific the complexities of emotion in pop music, not solely of their lyrics however musically as properly. I feel the album is type of a rocky hear, however in the easiest way. I imply, it takes us inside the top of this lady who’s handled a lot and who typically continues to be uncertain of herself. However she’s simply decided to be sincere, and sincere shouldn’t be a phrase I ever use calmly.

This album is so necessary past Kesha’s personal physique of labor and her personal profession. I imply, we’re years out now from the #MeToo motion turning into mainstream. And as a public, we prefer to give attention to tales of triumph and tales that resolved ultimately. 

However for victims, their tales hardly ever utterly resolve. And Kesha is giving us a present with this album. She’s letting us hear the usually contradictory feelings inside her head, and reminding us that not solely is therapeutic a lifelong course of, however justice is a lifelong course of.

Stephen Thompson, on the authorized battle:

These lawsuits have been going backwards and forwards.

She’s being sued for defamation. She is suing him … And I feel that the cumulative impact of all that battle — which isn’t solely between her and Dr. Luke, however her and this label that’s imagined to be the caretaker of her profession — I feel that frustration has constructed up and gathered in a means that she will be able to’t simply ignore it within the data that she’s placing out.

Ann Powers, on the place this matches within the wider pop music panorama:

This report isn’t just about Kesha’s story, however in regards to the story of pop artists basically. I imply, so many pop stars type of attain this level the place they have been put right into a field they usually need to refuse the bonds, you recognize, that contained them. And Miley Cyrus has accomplished the identical factor just lately, however this report goes even farther than what Miley’s accomplished.

This video comprises profanity.

Kesha — “Hate Me Tougher” from the album Gag Order.


So, what now?

Be taught extra:

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