Pop star Kesha Sebert lost her legal effort to extricate herself from Sony Music today. A judge in New York ruled that despite Kesha’s assertions that producer “Dr. Luke” had abused and used her physically and mentally, raped her, drugged her, and tried to destroy her career, she must stay with Sony Music even if she is produced by someone else.
Here’s the complaint Kesha, as she is known, filed last fall:
I have no idea who is right or wrong in this case. But Sony– the home of Barbra Streisand, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Beyonce and Adele– has no choice morally or ethically. They’ve got to suck it up, take the financial loss, and let Kesha leave the label. Do they really want to be associated with this? Do they really want to force an artist to work where she doesn’t want to? And do the good people who run Sony want to be remembered for ruining a career?
I’m surprised that the female artists at Sony haven’t spoken out yet on this situation. Regardless of the truth of Kesha’s complaint, the allegations raised are almost textbook in the record industry. Every female artist has a story like this. The most famous is that of Tina Turner, who was held hostage in an abusive relationship for years.
Maybe Kesha should file for assistance from MusiCares, and see if they will help her. But this is certainly not the look that Sony or any other music company wants to be associated with in 2016. I can’t even imagine how a P.R. expert would advise Sony to continue with this. Lady Gaga, Kelly Clarkson, Ariana Grande, and other pop stars are already on Twitter defending Kesha with #FreeKesha. Sony would do well to get out of this fast, and graciously.