Kesha Rose Sebert, formerly stylized as Ke$ha, is an American singer and songwriter. In 2005, at age 18, Kesha was signed to Kemosabe Records. Her first major success came in early 2009 after she was featured on rapper Flo Rida’s number-one single “Right Round”.
Kesha’s star rose, in part, because of her extremely unsubtle cracked-disco-ball persona: You likely got to know her through auto-tune-heavy hits like her chart-obliterating 2009 breakthrough, “Tik Tok,” or 2010’s “We R Who We R,” on which she sings, “Got that glitter on my eyes, stockings ripped all up the side, looking sick and sexified.”
Looking back on the 2010s, Kesha acknowledges that she felt pressure to play up her approachably ribald, wild-child image. “My fans came to me for joy, and I didn’t want to disappoint them,” she explains. But…she also believed in joy, so she encouraged people to get sleazy, have fun, and, yes, live free. “I was really tapping into enjoying myself, and…just doing a bunch of silly, fun shit, and inviting people to join me in that,” she says. “I stand by having a safe place [at my shows] for people to be exactly who they want to be.”
She was obviously known for her party ways, which included alcohol and drug issues, and an eating disorder. The latter almost killed her. She went into a treatment center called “Timberland Knolls” in Chicago to get help. “I’m a crusader for being yourself and loving yourself, but I’ve found it hard to practice, she said in a statement.