KE$HA: There’s No There, There.

One morning, a Tenneesee-born girl of moderate talent with the somewhat unique name of Kesha (rhymes with Mesh-a) woke up, signed with this guy Dr. Luke, met with a phalanx of advisers, and then, because she liked having money, or because plain old Kesha might sound too boring, decided to change the ‘S’ in the middle of my name to [GET THIS, THIS IS SO CLEVER, YOU GUYS!] a DOLLAR SIGN.  So instead of Kesha it’ll be Ke$ha, get it?  You don’t pronounce the dollar sign.  And so this year’s newest pop phenomenon was born.

Dr. Luke, often working in collaboration with Swedish producer Max Martin, is responsible for the vast majority of songs that are probably running through your head at any given moment:  “Party in the U.S.A.,” Taio Cruz’s “Dynamite,” Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream,” “California Girls,” and “I Kissed a Girl,” every song of Kelly Clarkston’s ever and Britney’s “Circus.”  Britney’s a good comparison here, as Ke$ha is what would happen if Britney climbed in a dumpster, lived there for two weeks, sustaining herself on coffee grinds and used condoms, started going crazy and clawing herself and matting her own hair, and climbed back out again, much skinnier, much dirtier, and with eye makeup that looks a coal and glitter plant exploded all over her face.

Ke$ha first entered the public consciousness as the girl singing on Flo Rida’s ridiculously irresistible “Right Round” — a song that uses the hook from the original “Right Round” and couples it with a few verses of meaningless, innocuous, catchy rap verses.  Ke$ha had been hanging out at the studio; they needed a female voice; it sounded good.  But they didn’t pay her or put her name on the song title — no “Featuring Ke$ha” — so she refused to be in the video or promote the song in any way, a decision she chalks up to knowing her worth as a potential star.  And Ke$ha certainly does think she’s valuable: at some point during this formative period, she snuck onto Prince’s gated compound because she so wanted to give him a demo and convince him to produce her.  She was caught and thrown out — and now Prince is touring with Janelle Monae, a woman of clear and distinct talent — but Ke$ha’s big break was yet to come.  [Note: I'm being deliberately sketchy on the details of her past, as they haven't really been forwarded nearly as much as those of, say, Britney.  Ke$ha seems to have been born as a grown woman dressed in trash, rather without history -- a point I'll come to in a bit.]

“TiK ToK,” the first single from Ke$ha’s first album, was slowly let loose in late 2009.  From there it spread….and spread….and spread, infecting all in its path, like an STD on a small college campus.  It held the #1 spot for nine weeks straight and, in the process, permanently engrained itself into the minds of any person who happened upon a Top 40 station on the radio dial.   Here’s where I took note.  I have what I’ll term a “fondness” (some may call it a “weakness”) for Dr. Luke/Max Martin pop songs.  I rather loathe Katy Perry, but I could listen to Teenage Dream for the rest of my life.  And Britney!  Even that Flo Rida song!  It’s makes me run REALLY FAST, you guys.   I admit, I was initially drawn to this TiK ToK-ness.  But here’s the thing: the other Dr. Luke/Max Martin songs are catchy in part because of how innocuous they are.  There’s nothing super annoying, cloying, or disgusting about any of them.  They’re SMOOTH.  But with “TiK ToK,” I knew there was something off.  Sure, other pop songs use the weird spelling — Clarkston’s “Since U Been Gone,” for example [It's to appeal to the way that TEENS THINK, get it?]  But for every totally innocuous line (I’m talking pedicure on our toes, toes/Trying on all our clothes, clothes/Boys blowing up our phones, phones”) there was a truly ridiculous, nearly non-sensical one to follow.  The best two: “Before I leave, brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack/’Cause when I leave for the night, I ain’t coming back” and “The dudes are lining up cause they hear we got swagger/But we kick ‘em to the curb unless they look like Mick Jagger.”  Rolling Stone summed up the song as “repulsive, obnoxious and ridiculously catchy.”

There have been all sorts of parodies of these lyrics — people doing a literal interpretation; others cussing Ke$ha for being stupid enough to brush her teeth with whiskey — but what really got to me was the fact that these aren’t even FANTASY or EVOCATIVE lyrics.  I have no mental picture.  These are just RHYMING lyrics.  What are we going to rhyme with “coming back?” Oh, “Bottle of Jack!”  What about “Hear we got swagger?”  MICK F-ING JAGGER!  But again, this makes no logical sense:  even if you’re a binge drinking young woman, as Ke$ha purports herself to be, you wouldn’t brush your teeth with the Jack, you would DRINK it.  And are you telling me that Ke$ha only goes for guys over 70?  These songs have been big hits overseas — in part because the beat works just as well when you have NO IDEA WHAT SHE’S SAYING.  The words are meaningless.

Okay, I get it, not all pop songs make sense.  But this was only the beginning of the weird disconnect.  When she dances, it’s like something’s off — she’s a half second behind the beat, her dancers aren’t all in unison, the sets are low-budget, her eyes don’t seem to be tracking correctly, her costume seems like she’s the opening act at a college talent show.  A year ago, The Awl made the very astute observation that Ke$ha’s performances look like sorority rush skits, and I could not agree more.  The Awl also points out that “thanks to the Internet, and the whole “death of shame” trend to which it is both handmaiden and accelerant, the separation between famous people and people who really want to be famous has gotten as narrow as Keira Knightley standing sideways.”  And that’s part of what it is with Ke$ha — she really shouldn’t be a famous person.  She could maybe be the Homecoming Queen at my high school, but she lacks that certain something that makes mediocre talents, like Britney, into superstars.  When people have charisma, whether they’re Obama or Britney or Brad Pitt or Kanye, you don’t begrudge them their success and fame.  They are special; they have talent, even if it’s just talent at embodying a particular brand of sex, and they deserve it.  But Ke$ha, like so many other pop stars before her, is the result of a smart producer taking a pretty face, a modicum of talent, and catchy music and packaging it into a highly edible yet calorie-free piece of candy.  But you know what happens when you eat calorie-free candy? You get diarrhea.

So  where does this feeling of upset stomach come from?  An overabundance of something that Lainey Gossip is fond of referring to as “try.”  This girl (and her management team) is trying really, really hard to be something — slutty? sexy? wacky? — but the problem is that she’s aiming for all types at once.  Her attempts at being unique and odd all come off as something just off the mark:  her style, for example, which she calls “garbage chic,” features the aforementioned matted hair, smudgy make-up, lots of glitter and face paint, and, in her words, “embracing imperfection rather than hiding her flaws.” But the TRY in this “garbage chic” is way too evident.  I know that you’re trying to make a joke about the fact that your image is rooted in a certain “white trash” aesthetic and sexuality, and “owning” that by actually manifesting the “trash” on your body and face, but the seams in that trash dress are showing, girl, and your perfectly derelict make-up is melting off your face, but not really in the way that you want it to.  Sure, Lady Gaga wears crazy shit, and her effort in attempting to be weird and potentially transgressive is certainly apparent.  But then again, she actually is weird.  Oh, you didn’t think that wearing cigarette glasses was weird? Well what about THIS MEAT DRESS.  [Ke$ha tried to out-do the meat dress at the American Music Awards a few weeks ago, showing up in a dress made entirely of VHS "innards." With a VHS tape in hand, just in case you didn't get it.] Point being: Ke$ha is trying hard to be weird — she even wrote a philosophy and coined a name for her style — but really she’s just using derelict clothes as a way of showing more skin.  In fact, that’s what she looks like — part of the “Derilicte” fashion collection in Zoolander.

In that movie, the collection was a way of harpooning the fashion industry’s tendency to create fashion so ridiculous as to be laughable, all in the name of attracting attention.  Now, if Ke$ha actually understood herself — and her image — as a critique of the rest of the pop industry, we might have ourselves something.  While I don’t find Gaga to be as emancipatory or transgressive as some others do, I do think that she very much understands the aspects of pop culture that she’s satirizing, parodying, or blowing out of the water.  Ke$ha, on the other hand, is so entrenched in pop culture that any potential trangression of “garbage chic” was co-opted before it even whispered critique.  She’s Britney/Gaga/Madonna Lite — all signifier, zero substance.  Her ahistorical-ness stems from the fact that she could have been programmed by a computer — a “sexy robot” meant to arouse prurient and pop desires.  In this way, she is the embodiment of what the postmodernists warned us about; the culmination of late stage capitalism, where economic imperatives (make money by getting teenagers to buy ring tones!) hollows out all meaning, the spectacle that distracts us from the fact that nothing — no politics, no soul, not even charisma — lies beneath.  In short: THERE IS NO THERE, THERE.

Evidence to this fact abounds — in the way that she looks on her album cover (Is she Shakira or Britney?  Sexy or dirty?  Homeless or on heroin? In the jungle or the garbage can?) In other pictures, she’s snarling at the camera, making herself look as unattractive, mean, blase, or spunky as possible — but isn’t she just posing?  And isn’t a pose no more than putting your body in a shape that evokes a feeling…..rather than actually conveying the feeling itself?

See this at work in the new-ish video for “We R Who We R,” in which she boasts “got that glitter on my eyes/stockings ripped all up the sides/looking sick and sexified….”

Now take a look at the way that she looks in this video:  is she pretty?  Well, not exactly.  She has all the signifiers of what our culture takes as pretty — tan skin, slightly emaciated body, long blond hair, blue eyes — but again, there’s something off, and it’s not just the fact that she’s put faux jewels all over her eyebrows.  She’s not sexy; she’s sexified.  My partner-in-crime (and past contributor to this blog) Alaina insists that it looks like she’s on drugs — not the “fun” kind of drugs, but the serious anti-depressant-type drugs, the kind that Britney was obviously on when she made her disastrous “come-back” appearance at the VMAs several years ago.


A certain hollowness to the eyes, which you can see in full effect below, as she takes viewers to her favorite “hang” in Los Angeles — a strip club.

Or take a look at her Tweets, which are meaningless, empty evocations of sex, and confusion:

Maybe Ke$ha is like a stripper: she has all the parts that should make her hot, sexy, popular, etc., but really, when you get down to it, it just makes you sad that this is what it takes for a woman to make money these days.

The funny thing is, the critical mass seems to subconsciously realize this, but comes up with other ways of talking about it.  The New York Times did a feature on her back in the early halcyon weeks of TiK ToK and spent a full article marveling at the fact that a white girl could, in their words, “rap.”  [I don't actually think she's rapping in her songs so much as TALKING.]  For the Times, Ke$ha’s “sass-rap” is “all part of the continuing deracination of the act of rapping, which used to be inscribed as a specifically black act, but which has been appropriated so frequently and with such ease that it’s been, in some cases, re-racinated. The very existence of the casually rapping white girl reflects decreasingly stringent ideas about race and gender.”  Or, as Ke$ha puts it, “Rap in general has never been my steez, but I like it.”  In other words: this girl, and the popularity of her “sass-rap,” underlines the fact that the vast majority of rap and/or hip-hop has been evacuated of politics, transgressiveness, and racial specificity, leaving white girls talking about their cell phones and pedicures as evidence of the sad shell that remains.

I don’t think pop music has gone over to the dark side, or in some way signifies the implosion of culture.  For every Ke$ha, there’s a Gaga, a Robyn, a Rihanna, even a Taylor Swift, proving that pop music may be anchored on popular images and catchy choruses, but it doesn’t have to be empty.  In a few years, Ke$ha will be forgotten.   She touches no nerves; she treads no new ground.  Her songs don’t speak to anyone because they don’t speak at all.  They pulse, they make people dance, but they don’t stick.  Which is why she’ll evaporate so painlessly from pubic consciousness in five to fifty years: a soulless image leaves no trace.

34 Responses to “KE$HA: There’s No There, There.”

  1. Ami says:

    I like “your love is my drug;” the video also seems different from her other videos. not that I think this is the direction that ke$ha is moving in, but it seems like a departure from the whole dirty/sexy/garbage/glitter thing, it seems light and genuine.

  2. Harry says:

    I disagree with this article. Especially “she treads no new ground.” Please find me another singer like Ke$ha, please.

    I’m a teenager from England and first off I see girls my age out in town that wear less than Ke$ha does so I don’t think that is a markteting strategy or whatever it is you’re getting at, just trends. Secondly, a lot of her songs have much deeper meanings than it first seems. Especially the album tracks, not so much the singles, except for say, “Take It Off”, which was a big hit, first seems like it’s just about taking off your clothes but she’s actually speaking metaphorically and once you uncover all the stereotypes and inhibitions or whatever (you ‘take it off’) we are all human, we’re all the same, and it’s about celebrating differences. Which is ironically what the writer of this article is failing to do. Ke$ha gets a lot of bad things said about her but I respect her for being unique and not the same as every other pop star, like the ones you have mentioned.

    Mostly, I think it’s an age thing. I don’t think old people get her, but she’s mostly popular amongst people my age. As in, the next generation. So who are you to say she won’t be around in five years? I think she will.

  3. sam greenberg says:

    I think you don’t get it.

    Billboard named Kesha Best New Artist of the year. Her songs a HUGE worldwide. Clearly she is doing something right and it’s registering with people.

    Oh, and BTW, they said the exact same thing about this band called the Beatles when they first came out.


  4. Shempop says:

    I didn’t even read this long crazy rant. I got bored about 1/3 of the way in. Clearly she’s doing something that makes you interested if you’re writing a short story about her on your trafficless blog. First of all everyone has low budget stage shows when they start out. Do some research.

    Second of all I think she continues to do low budget stage shows to separate herself from idiot bloggers who want to call everything she does a “Gaga Copy”. Picking apart her lyrics is retarded. At least she wrote them herself. Clearly Diane Warren style studio greats are not writing for her.

    She’s connecting to her audience and establishing herself as a youth identified pop act. Have you ever listened to one Ke$ha interview? She’s quite intelligent. A lot of the things she does is sort of poking fun at the idea of the “pop star”. Only simple minded blogger types like yourself don’t really seem to get it yet. Her performance on SNL completely making fun of pretentious pop stars who dress up and say wacky things just to seem artistic during performances.

    What exactly was all that business about her living off of condoms? Sounds to me like you were that person in school who didn’t like the tall blonde girls because they intimidated you. Could you sound any less professional?

    Ke$ha plays piano, drums and guitar. I will do you a favor so you can see how stupid your idiot mile long rant was and show you how much fun she’s actually poking at people like you who buy into this pop star thing.

    Kesha singing “Goodbye” a song she wrote with her mom at age..what..15? I”m guessing?

    Kesha singing “I”m the One”

    Ke$ha “Dead Flowers” Rolling Stones Cover

    Ke$ha singing “Hearts on Fire” In a small club with her Brother

    Where’s the fluff tart with no point of view now? She is making people like you look stupid. That is the point. Get it now?

  5. Shempop says:

    Oh one last thing. For every Ke$ha there’s a Gaga??? Did you really type that? Taking a ride on a disco stick so artistic. LOL. You’re a joke.

  6. Thanks for the post, and my sympathies for the oncoming comment deluge you’re sure to face!

    To me, Kesha (I will NOT put that stupid dollar sign in there) has always seemed like an amalgamation of Asher Roth and Christina Aguilera circa “Dirrty.”

    There’s a ceiling on Roth’s hip-hop success because he can never get around hip-hop’s fascination with authenticity– he’ll always look like some frat dude doing a Slim Shady impression. Roth doesn’t just de-racinate rap, he also takes away the class element as well (the source of Eminem’s authenticity).

    When poor Christina Aguilera tried the same “trash aesthetic” with “Dirrty,” it just didn’t take. Instead it wound up seeming like even more of a put-on than the “teen queen” image she was trying to break from. Ironically, I think you can blame this on her vocal talent–it’s hard to conjure motorcycle gangs and go-go clubs with one of the best (technically, anyhow) voices in popular music. With Aguilera, there has always been something there, there, and that’s always held her back! I think this is why her best album (imo) moved out of the pop realm altogether and just worked in the jazz tradition.

    Kesha uses that same lyrical style and “I love college” themes as Roth, but avoids the problem of hip hop authenticity by working her music into the awful dance-pop/rap territory cleared by Stefani & Fergie. She uses the same trashpile sensibility and spelling irregularity as Xtina, but isn’t betrayed by any discernable talent at all.

    She is, in other words, a perfectly engineered star for the age of the fauxhawk, the appearance of transgression with no social commitment.

  7. PS- Ashlee Simpson also won a Billboard Award for Best New Artist.

  8. Shempop says:

    Michael you’re an idiot. Actually Asher Roth is following the blue print of both the early Beastie Boys and Eminem. In actual indie rap circles he gets support from serious established rap artist and gets air play on hip hop / rap radio. If you’re looking for him on your local top 40 station it’s not going to happen as it’s currently being dominated by dance music and those willing to sell out their sound for mass appeal. Had “My Name Is” by Eminem come out in this day and age of music it wouldn’t be played on top 40 radio. Really stupid comparison in my opinion.

    Speaking of stupid comparisons..

    To even compare Ke$ha and Christina is just nonsensical. Christina, at the time was merely trying to imitate a marketing move by Pink who had just shed her label prison to break out and “be herself”. I will admit it worked. She pulled it off but her point wasn’t to be dirty it was to break out of the Mickey Mouse Club image and find a clever transition to compete in that particular pop market. “Can’t be Tamed” – Miley Cyrus anyone? That is the oldest marketing move in the book. What a lame ill informed attempt to somehow connect that to Ke$ha.

    Oh, and with all of Ke$ha’s “awful dance-pop/rap that makes her a perfectly engineered star for the ages of fauxhawk” bulls*it babble you just mentioned that was actually territory cleared by indie artist like Uffie and is quite popular with the underground electro kids – w/Gwen it was on ONE song and it wasn’t her so called “thing” at all.. There is one thing I can say for sure

    I’m sure Ke$ha will be around a LOT longer than this flop of a blog. Anyone interested in Billboard’s top new artist of 2010? :) LOL

  9. Annie says:

    Shempop, I decided to approve your initial comment in the name of creating discourse, but using insults is really just a way of shutting down dialogue, not continuing it. If you’d like to continue to argue your point, I welcome it — and certainly welcome opinions that differ from my own — but only if you decide to refrain from insulting other commenters. You can disagree respectfully and articulately without calling someone an idiot.

  10. Shempop says:

    LOL, like most of the general online population. I won’t be returning. No worries :)

  11. Shempop says:

    Well I lied. I have to squeeze in one last thing. I guess I didn’t realize this was a civilized no name calling blog when I read this ” Ke$ha is what would happen if Britney climbed in a dumpster, lived there for two weeks, sustaining herself on coffee grinds and used condoms, started going crazy and clawing herself and matting her own hair, and climbed back out again, much skinnier, much dirtier, and with eye makeup that looks a coal and glitter plant exploded all over her face.” Hypocrisy much? Bye Bye

  12. Matt Thomas says:

    If you think the vacuous Ke$ha makes good music, my guess is you don’t listen to much music.

  13. How is Asher Roth “following the blueprint” of early Beastie Boys? Was he in a punk band? Did he tour with the 2010 equivalent of Run DMC and LL? Or by “following the blueprint” did you mean “being white”?

    Also, I’m fairly certain that using the term “put-on” is a pretty clear signal that I didn’t think “Dirrty” was anything but a marketing move. I think you’re letting your rage (and questionable knowledge of pop music history) cloud your judgment.

    PS- Fergie’s blockbuster solo record was released in 2006, a few months before “Pop the Glock” started making the rounds. I find it impressive that A&M Records could finance, record and market a record biting Uffie’s style months before anybody heard of Uffie, but who knows, maybe I’m just an idiot. Maybe if you wanted to make a point, you might’ve talked about electroclash going back to 2001-2002, but even then I wasn’t talking about Uffie and Kid Sister, I was talking about miserable manufactured pop stars like Fergie and Kesha. And I suspect you’re just trying to drop names, so…back to with you!

  14. Tiffiny says:

    Annie, like the aforementioned Kanye said so wisely in his hit single, “Good Life” (ft. T-Pain): Fiddy told me, go ‘head, switch the style up and if they hate, then let ‘em hate and watch the money pile up. :)

    I don’t “get” Ke$ha – ugh, even typing her name makes me angry – and judging by some of the comments you’ve gotten from her fanbase, I’m glad I don’t. Give me some good ol’ fashioned Brit-Brit any day over this vapid waste of radio space.

  15. Jennifer says:

    I reply to Harry’s comment “Mostly, I think it’s an age thing. I don’t think old people get her, but she’s mostly popular amongst people my age. As in, the next generation. So who are you to say she won’t be around in five years? I think she will.”

    What age range would “old people” qualify for, I am 25 and per my google search on Kesha’s age she is only 2 years younger than me and I don’t get her. I certainly hope that “your generation” will have someone better to identify with than a singer who everytime opens her mouth sounds like a wasted teenager telling you about of the “wild and crazy” night she had. Trust me if you want depth and metaphores in lyrics listen to Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon, any Bob Dylan song/album or PINK (some of her early stuff is really good).

    I don’t hate Kesha…but I don’t particularly like her either, is her music catchy yes, is she going to be around in 5 years *shrug* who knows but please don’t give her praise for “being unique because she is not the same as every other pop star” trust me she is manufactored just like every other artist that comes out of the starting gate. They don’t become real and honest until much later and she is only on her first album…I am sure some new pop star will come our way before then and distract us…but who knows maybe she will stand the test of time, I doubt it but never say never.

    Also to Sam – really, comparing Kesha to the Beatles…really. That is all I have to say about that.

  16. Harry says:

    Oh my god. Jennifer don’t be so narrow minded and prejudice. Do not talk to me like I’m an idiot because of my age. That’s exactly what I’m talking about you think I’m some kind of ‘ignorant youth’ type, which is exactly what I’m talking about. I probably have a wider record collection than you do so let that be out of the way first. I don’t even know why I’m replying to you after such a rude comment.

    It doesn’t matter how old Ke$ha is, just because that may be here age doesn’t mean that’s the age of her primary audience? She’s making the kind of music that SHE wants to. I didn’t say ALL young people like it and get it, but certainly a hell of a lot more do than grown ups. And Shempop posted some great links that shows she does have talent, but she clearly just isn’t choosing to show it right now, but that doesnt bother me in the slightest because I like it, and clearly so do the 16 million people that made her the most listened to artist of the year on!

    Don’t try and teach me about the music industry. Watch interviews with her, she is clever, funny and different.

  17. Harry says:

    Also your comment doesn’t make sense either I’m afraid. You say “…trust me she is manufactored just like every other artist that comes out of the starting gate.”

    First, just an FYI it’s spelt ‘manufactured’. And really? EVERY other artist that starts off is manufactured? And “they don’t become real and honest until much later”? Really? But some of Pink’s EARLY stuff is really good? Ummm…

  18. petitpoussin says:

    What’s up with the totally unnecessary and cheap potshot at antidepressants – you know, those ‘serious’ drugs that cause pop singers to make bad comeback decisions while their eyes glaze over? I really enjoy the pop culture analysis on this blog and that was a moment of ableism that surprised me. I know the overall tone of this post is a bit more irreverent than others, but that’s just ugly. (As is the stripper comment; talk about tired and trashy.)

  19. Annie says:

    You’re right, petitpoussin, that is out of line and potentially offensive. That’s not at all how I meant it — I meant it looked like she had been over-medicated, not like she was simply medicated for depression — if that clarifies anything at all. But I should be more conscientious about such things, and thank you for that to my attention.

  20. Charity says:

    The comments on this are HILARIOUS. Everyone is so fired up about a girl who allegedly brushes her teef wif a bottle of Jack. Actually, I was surprised at how mean you were to Kesha, and at how mean people were to your blog, but maybe that’s because I spend my days at an elementary school. Oh well.

    I think her music is super-fun and I like her because she is my antithesis. But it seems like she doesn’t know what her own thesis is. I think she could be making all the same music, and many of the same public moves, and it would all look very different if she gave evidence that she was thinking about what it means. And not just in a way that copies Gaga. I do think she’ll be around in 5 years, but that she’ll be doing something very different. Didn’t she start off as a songwriter in Nashville or something?

    On a related note, I think there’s evidence that she’s not quite hitting her marks in the fact that she was scheduled to perform at the Rose Garden in Portland, OR, this year, which is large enough to host regular NBA games AND Lady Gaga. But that show was canceled and now she’s scheduled at Portland’s Crystal Ballroom, which is a decent venue if you’re, say, Kimya Dawson or M. Ward, but is a HUGE step down if you were originally aiming for Gaga-level. At the same time, I’m kind of glad because now it means I can probably afford to see the show.

  21. Charity says:

    I especially love the guy who says he’s never coming back to this blog and is back two seconds later with a new comment. He’s NOT engaged in the discussion you started. No, not at all.

    • Harry says:

      She was never scheduled to perform at the Rose Garden… ever. So I’m not 100% where you’ve got that from. If she was, why would none of the other dates on her tour be scheduled for arenas? I guess the number one single she just had doesn’t argue against the fact she’s “not hitting her mark” at all.

  22. charity thompson says:

    Harry, I got that info by reading the marquee for upcoming shows when I drove by the Rose Garden arena multiple times in the neighborhood in Portland WHERE I LIVE. I think you might calm down about some of this. I am an allegedly old person who really likes Kesha, but I’m not about to say she can do no wrong.

    • Harry says:

      I’m not getting angry, I don’t need to calm down about anything, you’re just wrong. I believe you may have made a mistake, as it was probably advertising the Rihanna gig which she was supporting. I’m telling you right now Ke$ha has never been scheduled to headline any arena dates.

  23. Charity says:

    I know what my eyes saw, but this seems weirdly important to you, so whatever. The point is that she’s constantly on the radio and in the media, but she’s not at arenas. I don’t see this as good or bad, just interesting. Peace.

    • Harry says:

      Google it yourself, she was never scheduled to headline any arenas… You’re wrong. If you don’t care about it at all why would you comment in the first place?

      The fact she isn’t playing at arenas is no doubt her choice as well. She could easily sell out an arena. But you can’t expect new artists to dive straight into huge arena tours on their debut. Lady Gaga’s first tour, she was playing the same size venues, and now look at her? They need to grow and get expirience before they carry an arena like that.

  24. Raina says:

    Thanks, Anne, for articulating exactly the way I feel about Ke$ha. I couldn’t quite figure out how to say it, but you did it!

    Also, I had no idea how upset people (in the comments) could get about Ke$ha…

    • Harry says:

      If you are referring to me, I’m not upset, but we are commenting on an article specifically about her so obviously I’m going to make my point on my opinion about her? Not understanding how that makes me upset?

  25. [...] 6.  Ke$ha. Seriously?  You require an explanation?  *sigh*  See here. [...]

  26. Sophie says:

    Honestly, I don’t think you give Ke$ha enough credit. She actually has an IQ of genius level, and although yes, her lyrics have the same content as most pop songs, and not all, but most, I find her a genuine artist. This entire article was just a long rant on how much you obviously dislike her. I think this article was totally one-sided, and I do believe Ke$ha will be around for a while.

  27. Susan says:

    This is SO entertaining! Anne, I quite liked your article. I found it thoughtful and insightful.

    Some people obviously need to learn how to make their point without getting emotional. One can make a strong argument without name calling, getting defensive or harping on the spelling errors in someone else’s post. Yes, I’m looking at you, Harry and Shempop.

    All ridiculousness aside, I quite liked TikTok (very catchy), but have not liked anything else. It all kind of sounds the same (rather soulless, imo and her persona seems like a part she is playing, to me anyway). And let’s be real, it’s not like she writes her own music, so how exactly is she an artist? Please correct me if I’m wrong about that. Respectfully, please.

    • Harry says:

      Look at the dates of the comments, this was almost a year ago now… Was pretty much over it 11 months ago.

      And actually Ke$ha has writing credits on her entire discography so yes, you are wrong about that. Perhaps you should try and do some research before making baseless claims in order to dismiss the talents of one because you simply aren’t a fan of them.

      Besides, Elvis Presley didn’t write ANY of his material… Are we going to try and dismiss him as an artist?

      art·ist (ärtst)
      1. One, such as a painter, sculptor, or writer, who is able by virtue of imagination and talent or skill to create works of aesthetic value, especially in the fine arts.
      2. A person whose work shows exceptional creative ability or skill: You are an artist in the kitchen.
      3. One, such as an actor or singer, who works in the performing arts.
      4. One who is adept at an activity, especially one involving trickery or deceit: a con artist.

      Pay particular attention to definition #3. You don’t have to write to be an artist.

      You tried your best though.

  28. Susan says:

    Wow Harry, for someone who was over this 11 months ago, you just jumped right back on it, didn’t you? Perhaps you just can’t help being combative.

    I came across this link today, as it was posted in a facebook group. I did notice the dates after I had commented. No matter when it was, it it still highly entertaining.

    Thank you so much for quoting the dictionary to me. So I guess that everyone who has ever acted or sang is an artist? Have you watched American Idol lately? I’m speaking of definition #1; the one with imagination and talent.

    In the article above, Anne talks about the fact that her songs are written by other people. Before you start accusing me of making baseless claims, you could note that I did say “Correct me if I’m wrong…”

    And finally, all art is subjective. While I did not buy Kesha’s album, I don’t have anything against her. I found Anne’s article to be quite apt, and that is my OPINION. Perhaps you should allow people to have one that is different than your own without becoming defensive and insulting.

    And are we comparing Kesha to Elvis now? Really?

    • Harry says:

      What is wrong with you? I’m fully aware that is your opinion and I have mine too. What is the point of trying to have a discussion if you aren’t going to welcome the views of others? I never commented on your view of her work, because frankly I really couldn’t care less if you bought her album or if you like her songs. But don’t try and claim that she isn’t an artist, because everyone you hear on the radio is one, whether they are very talented or not. Get used to it.

      Anyone who sings, dances, acts, paints or whatever IS an artist. Whether you think they are good or not is a completely separate issue – they are still an artist regardless of your opinion on them.

      And no, we aren’t comparing them, I was simply using him as an example of a well respected and successful ARTIST who has NEVER released a song THAT HE WROTE.