#FreeKesha: Inside Friday's Protest, And Why Her Fans Aren't Giving Up

#FreeKesha: Inside Friday's Protest, And Why Her Fans Aren't Giving Up

FUSE TV - #FreeKesha: Inside Friday's Protest, And Why Her Fans Aren't Giving Up

"Free Kesha now! Free Kesha now!"

Those were the cries ringing out from protesters outside New York City's Supreme Court on Friday morning (Feb. 19). While the clouds blocked all traces of the sun, the dozens of fans of pop star Kesha helped to brighten the atmosphere. They stood in front of the courthouse with signs that read "Free Kesha Right Meow!," "I Heart U Kesha" and "Fuck Dr. Luke." They transformed the stoic location into a heartfelt celebration.

In recent years, no legal saga has shaken up the music industry more than Kesha’s case against Lukasz "Dr. Luke" Gottwald. The pop singer has been involved in a messy and eye-opening battle with her longtime producer—who helmed smashes like "TiK ToK," "Die Young" and "Blow" for the singer—since October 2014, when she claimed that he “sexually, physically, verbally and emotionally abused” her for a decade. 

The pile-up of allegations—from Kesha’s mother blaming her reported post-traumatic stress disorder on Dr. Luke, to claims that the producer threatened to abuse the singer's pet dog—has been stunning, and have posed a question of how much support young female artists are actually receiving from their management, as well as what is hidden behind closed doors as hit singles continue to be accrued.

On Jan. 26, Kesha was supposed to head to court in New York City for a hearing, after she requested to sever her recording contract and have permission to record music with anyone outside of Dr. Luke. It was later pushed back due to “travel problems with the weather.” But on Friday (Feb. 19), the singer’s hearing was back on schedule—and her fans (who refer to themselves as “Animals”) showed a tremendous outpouring of support. 

To coincide with the court hearing, 18-year-old college student and Kesha fan Michael Eisele organized a “Free Kesha” protest rally outside of Manhattan’s Supreme Court. An accompanying petition asking Sony to free the singer of her contract currently has 118,000+ supporters, which is not far from its 120,000-signature goal. Eisele was on the front lines on Friday morning, wearing a denim jacket and providing the crowd with coffee and treats.

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