Almost 18 months after Kesha filed a lawsuit against her producer Lukasz Gottwald (known as Dr. Luke) for "mental manipulation, emotional abuse, and sexual assault," she has been refused an exit from her recording contract by the New York Supreme Court.
Justice Shirley Kornreich is quoted as saying:
"You're asking the court to decimate a contract that was heavily negotiated and typical for the industry. My instinct is to do the commercially reasonable thing. I don't understand why I have to take the extraordinary measure of granting an injunction."
She also cited Dr. Luke's $60 million investment in Kesha's career, as she continued:
"You're asking me to assume an entity like Sony, who are in a competitive position, will not want to make money on their investment."
When the decision was declared, a devastated Kesha broke down in tears.
After signing with Luke at the age of 18, Kesha (formerly stylized as Ke$ha) had a string of successful songs including 'Tik Tok,' 'We R Who We R,' and 'Die Young,' all of which were produced by Luke. Her last album, Warrior, was released in 2012 but nothing else has surfaced since her collaboration with Pitbull in 2013:
And former Universal Music Chief Executive Jim Uriethe explained why in the injunction paperwork written in September 2015:
"She has not been recording, touring, or able to market merchandise for nearly a year – an eternity in the industry. If Kesha cannot immediately resume recording... her career is effectively over."
The injunction claims that Dr. Luke made Kesha snort something prior to boarding a plane, before forcing himself on her while she was drugged. It also alleges that she woke up "naked in Dr. Luke's bed, sore, sick… and with no memory of how she got there," after being given tablets he called 'sober pills.'
These are pretty serious allegations, all of which are fiercely denied by Luke, who went as far as to countersue last year on the premise that Kesha had fabricated the stories in an attempt to break her contract with his label, Kemosabe. Kesha, however, has maintained that Dr. Luke has been abusive since the start, making comments about her appearance that triggered an eating disorder.
Although it's small consolation, both fans and stars around the globe took to Twitter on Friday to share their support for Kesha with the hashtag #FreeKesha. Lady Gaga, who has spoken of her own experience with rape in the past, led the way with this encouraging tweet:
Lorde made it clear she was in Kesha's camp:
Whereas Iggy Azalea took a more impartial stance:
Ariana Grande also offered some love:
And Kelly Clarkson, who has previously worked with Dr. Luke, tried her best to stay silent but implied that she had experienced issues with Luke herself:
Demi Lovato, JoJo, and Lily Allen were among the other celebrities to show their support:
In response to all of the love, Kesha broke her silence yesterday to send out her heartfelt gratitude:
And in yet another act of alliance, Taylor Swift has come forward and donated $250,000 in order to help Kesha "with any of her financial needs during this trying time."
The court did not dismiss Kesha's lawsuit, so this is far from the end of the story. Here's hoping that this recent rally of support can help Kesha stay strong in the meantime.