A New York Supreme Court justice has ruled that pop star and songwriter Kesha Rose Sebert must remain in a contract with Sony Music’s Kemosabe record label, operated by Lukasz Gottwald – aka Dr. Luke, whom she sued for sexual assault in 2014. Kesha had asked the court to be released from her contract so as to allow the artist to work with collaborators other than her alleged rapist, but the preliminary injunction motion was denied today by Supreme Court Justice Shirley Kornreich. “You’re asking the court to decimate a contract that was heavily negotiated and typical for the industry,” Kornreich said, adding, “My instinct is to do the commercially reasonable thing,” based on Dr. Luke’s $60 million investment in her career. Contractually, Kesha is required to produce six more albums for Sony.
Her 2014 suit claimed that a decade ago, the producer – who signed Kesha when she was 18 – forced her to snort illegal drugs before he forced himself on her, and that she was given “sober pills” after being forced to drink alcoholic beverages. She said she woke up naked in Dr. Luke’s bed the following afternoon, sore, sick and with no recollection of how she got there. Also in the suit are claims of verbal and physical harassment that led Kesha to develop an eating disorder, for which she received treatment in rehab. Kesha has been unable to record new music outside of her contract since pressing charges and through her lawyer has expressed that her career will flounder under Sony’s conditions. Dr. Luke has maintained his innocence, countersuing the 28-year-old star.
Kesha’s fans showed up in support of star outside of the New York courtroom, holding signs and using the hashtag #FreeKesha online.
Read the full story at The Hollywood Reporter.