This writer is not a particular fan of pop music behind the scenes and a good portion is why that is so is outlined in the case the artist popularly known as Kesha lost in a Manhattan court today. The basic reality is that the people in charge take advantage of the young, and naive, make a mint off of them. In Kesha’s case, she is bound to Sony thanks to a contract she signed before knowing any better, and it ended up costing her in ways no young woman should ever suffer.
…music producer Dr. Luke — who she claimed abused her sexually, physically and emotionally during their 10-year working relationship….
Those are the words anyone who as seen the inside of the entertainment industry fears for the the young people who are part of it. Those are her charges of her producer without proof, unfortunately. The basic reality is that young talents are spotted, and “plucked” (as the Mashable article puts it) and made stars without having the defense mechanisms to protect themselves. This has been going on in Hollywood since the days of Louis B. Mayer and Jack Warner, a known connosseur of tender flesh. Kids are used and abused for the enrichment and pleasure of the adults.
The judge in this case said that the court system could not release Kesha from her contract under these circumstances, but apparently that she could work with a different producer. What is lacking in this story, even if Kesha filed a lawsuit alleging it happened, is the lack of a charge and conviction of the rape that supposedly happened. Rape is not an allegation to take or make lightly, and if one is going to charge that, one better have proof of it…or at least make a police report. But that did not happen. What makes her claim compelling, though, is that she is not the only one inside entertainment to make the charge even if the perpetrators were not Dr. Luke who may well be innocent.
Kesha is 28. She started working for Sony when she was 18. The sexual abuse aspect of the case may well be true, but without proof, Kesha is going to get pounded in court every time. A countersuit for defamation of character and breach of contract has been filed by Lukasz Sebastian Gottwald, Dr. Luke, against the singer. Those are some pretty serious charges.
What this sad episode in American pop music demonstrates, though, is that the entertainment industry, and the contracts it offers to people who are not prepared to completely understand the full repercussions of signing them (including the duration of so many years and the realities of artistic growth) is a form of predatory behavior. So is sexual and mental abuse. If it is provable, there should be clauses in the contracts protecting the artist. Even if the Kesha case is much ado about nothing, this is an ongoing issue in entertainment and should be taken seriously.