Kesha released her first song, titled “Praying,” in nearly four years on Thursday, and explained that the track is about feeling empathy for someone “even if they hurt you or scare you.”
The song seems to indirectly reference her years-long court battle with former producer Dr. Luke, in which she claimed he sexually and emotionally abused her. The producer, who has not been criminally charged, has denied the allegations.
“This song is about coming to feel empathy for someone else even if they hurt you or scare you,” the singer wrote in Thursday’s Lenny Letter, a newsletter curated by Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner. “It’s a song about learning to be proud of the person you are even during low moments when you feel alone. It’s also about hoping everyone, even someone who hurt you, can heal.”
On Dunham’s website, the “TiK ToK” singer detailed her deep depression over the past few years.
“I have channeled my feelings of severe hopelessness and depression, I’ve overcome obstacles, and I have found strength in myself even when it felt out of reach. I’ve found what I had thought was an unobtainable place of peace,” she wrote. “There were so many days, months even, when I didn’t want to get out of bed. I spent all day wanting to go to sleep, and then when I did fall asleep, I had horrible night terrors where I would physically cry and scream through the dark. I was never at peace, night or day.”
But the artist got out of bed and “took my emotions to the studio and made art out of them. And I have never been happier with a body of work as I am with this record.”
She added, “This song is about me finding peace in the fact that I can’t control everything — because trying to control everyone was killing me. It’s about learning to let go and realize that the universe is in control of my fate, not me.”
In 2014, Kesha filed a lawsuit against Dr. Luke also known as Lukasz Gottwald, accusing him of rape and emotional abuse. Kesha also added Sony to the lawsuit, contending that the company “had knowledge of Dr. Luke treating female entertainers under his tutelage and supervision in the same manner as alleged here regarding [Kesha] which includes both physical and emotional abuse.”
While Kesha was unsuccessful in getting out of her Sony contract, the singer did receive a groundswell of support from fans and fellow artists alike, with artists such as Adele and Lady Gaga expressing their solidarity with her.
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