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Kesha and Dr. Luke Finally Resolve their Lengthy Legal Dispute Over Defamation and Sexual Assault Allegations




The protracted, headline-grabbing legal battle between Kesha and Dr. Luke, which has rumbled on for almost ten years, has finally reached a resolution with the settlement of their defamation lawsuit. The root cause of this saga was Kesha’s accusation that her former producer Dr. Luke (real name: Lukasz Gottwald), sexually assaulted her back in 2005.

How It All Started

In October 2014, as Us Weekly reported at the time, Kesha made allegations of sexual and emotional abuse against Dr. Luke. She recounted a disturbing episode from 2005 where she allegedly found herself naked and without any memory of what had happened in Dr. Luke’s bed after he gave her some so-called “sober pills.” The singer behind the hit ‘Tik Tok’ claimed that Dr. Luke threatened to wreck her career and ruin her family if she ever disclosed the supposed rape.

Dr. Luke immediately hit back by filing a countersuit on the same day, flatly denying all of Kesha’s claims and characterizing them as part of a malicious campaign built on falsehoods.

Their Legal Push-and-Pull Battle

In February 2016, despite Kesha’s plea to be let go from her Sony Contract with Dr. Luke, a New York City judge sided with him instead, noting that it was possible for Kesha to continue working within Sony without any involvement from him.

A few months later, in August 2016, Kesha chose to drop her lawsuit in order to refocus on developing her music career, submitting 28 new tracks to the record label and underlining her determination to put the past behind her.

Courtroom Drama and Decisions

In a surprise twist in February 2020, a New York supreme court judge ruled that Kesha had indeed defamed her former producer. The decision was prompted by a text message that Kesha sent to Lady Gaga in which she accused Dr. Luke of raping Katy Perry. As a result, the court ordered Kesha to pay $374,000 in damages relating to delayed royalty fees owed to Dr. Luke’s company.

And yet, just three years later, in June 2023, Kesha secured her own significant legal victory when the highest-ranking New York appeals court declared Dr. Luke to be a “public figure.” This meant he now faced an additional hurdle: needing to establish “actual malice” on Kesha’s part if he wanted his lawsuit against her to succeed.

The Now-Confirmed Settlement

In a joint statement posted recently on Instagrammers’, both musicians confirmed they had reached an agreement and would not be taking any further legal action. Kesha and Dr. Luke each offered their own personal thoughts, expressing their shared hope for a peaceful outcome and resolution to the matter.

Kesha is now keen to close this chapter of her life and eagerly start anew. “I want only peace for all those involved,” she said in her statement. For his part, Dr. Luke remained unwavering in his rejection of the accusations against him: “I am completely certain that nothing occurred,” he declared firmly, reiterating that he had neither drugged nor assaulted Kesha – and emphasizing just how hard-fought his campaign had been to clear his name for the sake of himself and those closest to him.

Moving On After Settling The Lawsuit

Despite the tumultuous legal rollercoaster ride, both musicians have continued with their work in the music industry throughout. With the release of her latest album, “Gag Order,” on May 19, 2023, Kesha brought down the curtain on her time working under Kemosabe – Dr. Luke’s label – but she plans to keep making music, looking forward to performing at Hollywood’s famous Palladium venue on November 18, 2023.

Meanwhile, Dr.Luke’s professional career continues apace: he currently has several songwriting and production credits to his name featured on Kim Petras’s new record- an expected forthcoming album from Lil Durk that features J.Cole among others-has gained notable success so far on which he co-wrote/produced its recently chart-topping single titled “All My Life.”

Reflecting Back on their Earlier Partnerships

In September 2005, it was actually Dr.Luke who signed Kesha (then an unknown artist) up with his publishing company, Prescription Songs. In the years that followed, their collaboration created the foundation for Kesha’s meteoric rise to fame, with Dr.Luke taking a central role in producing and co-writing that tracks – including her breakthrough single ‘Tik Tok’, which dominated the Billboard Hot 100 charts for an astonishing nine consecutive weeks – on her critically acclaimed debut album “Animal” (released in 2009).

However, by 2012 Kesha started voicing her dissatisfaction with her perceived lack of control over their joint musical direction. One notorious example of this was when she argued publicly that she had been “forced” to sing the lyrics to one of their songs (‘Die Young’) against her better judgment, resulting in it being abruptly pulled from radio playlists across America after the tragic Sandy Hook school shooting.

A Recap on Their Legal Fallout

While their long-running legal clash has finally come to a close after almost ten years at war in various courtrooms, the impact on both artists’ careers – and indeed the music industry as a whole – cannot be understated. For now, though, Kesha and Dr.Luke can begin moving forward independently in new directions. But they will do so bearing scars left behind by this intense conflict alongside fresh insights they have undoubtedly gleaned from life lessons well-learned during an unforgettable decade-long courtroom stalemate.