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Kesha Performs Emotional 'Praying' At The Grammys Inspired By Her Alleged Abuse

Watch Kesha's powerful #MeToo performance.

By Sowmya Krishnamurthy

Kesha performed her emotional song, “Praying,” at last night’s Grammy Awards. As CNN reports, Kesha was surrounded by female musicians like Cindy Lauper, Andra Day and Camilla Cabello in what was the show’s #MeToo moment.

“After everything you've done I can thank you for how strong I have become,'" Kesha tweeted afterwards, citing lyrics from her song. "Thank you to the @RecordingAcad, the women on stage with me tonight, and everyone who has supported me through this whole journey."

The song was tied up in a legal back-and-forth with producer Dr. Luke. Many felt that the song’s lyrics were a reflection of Kesha’s claims that Luke (real name Lukasz Gottwald) abused her when she was his protégé.

Kesha was signed to Luke’s Kemosabe Records and he was instrumental in her musical rise. She alleged that he sexually assaulted her, physically abused her and gave her drugs to force her to have sex. He has denied those claims.

In 2016, Kesha and her legal team called her relationship with Luke “slavery” as she tried to leave her recording contract from him. The court initially ruled against Kesha, a decision her lawyer compares to "slavery." "The court based its decision on its finding that Kesha could record without interference from [Dr. Luke]. Although it recognized that 'slavery was done away with a long time ago' and that '[y]ou can't force someone to work ... in a situation in which they don't want to work,' the Court's ruling requiring Kesha to work for [Luke]'s companies, purportedly without his involvement, does just that," Kesha's lawyer, Mark Geragos, said in the statement.

Luke's lawyer responded to the appeal by underscoring that Kesha can already record without the producer. "The Court repeatedly stated Kesha was already free to record without Dr. Luke, and that she had not presented any facts supporting her claims. That's because all the evidence – including Kesha’s own sworn testimony – show her allegations are false. Her attorneys can continue manufacturing even more false and outrageous claims, but the fact remains that her time would be better spent in a studio than wasting time having her lawyer and mother spin lies in the media."

Many have pointed to Kesha’s relationship with Luke as exemplifying the need for #TimesUp and #MeToo movements within the music industry. During the Grammys, many celebrities wore white roses as a sign of solidarity against gender discrimination and abuse.

[Photo: Getty Images]

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