Name at birth: Kesha Rose SebertKesha was first called a "pop trollop" by The LA Times and "a degenerate Hannah Montana" by The Guardian as she rushed to the top of the download charts at the end of 2009 with her chipper electro-dance singles "TiK ToK" and "Blah Blah Blah." A freckled and jangly blonde with heavy mascara and a let's-party attitude, she spelled her name Ke$ha at the time, saying the dollar sign in her stage name was an ironic joke. (She removed the dollar sign and reverted to just "Kesha" in 2014.) Kesha comes from musical genes: her mother, Pebe Sebert, co-wrote the country tune "Old Flames Can't Hold A Candle To You," which was recorded by Dolly Parton in 1980. Kesha quit high school at age 17 and moved to Los Angeles to seek her musical fortune. After four years of scrabbling, she sang a cameo part on the Flo Rida single "Right Round." The single went to number one and Kesha had her break. Her debut album of white-girl rap, Animal, was released in January of 2010, and "TiK ToK" in particular became one of the year's most persistent hits. Her second album, Warrior, was released in November of 2012, with the lead single "Die Young." In 2014 she went into rehab for an eating disorder, later telling Rolling Stone magazine that "I felt like part of my job was to be as skinny as possible and, to make that happen, I had been abusing my body." In 2016 she was much in the news due to a very public dispute with her producer, the pop music savant Dr. Luke. On February 19th of that year, a New York Supreme Court judge ruled that Kesha was still contractually bound to Sony and Dr. Luke's label Kemosabe; Kesha had accused Dr. Luke of drugging and raping her when she was 18 and of abusing her in a variety of ways throughout their creative partnership since. Dr. Luke denied the charges, tweeting that "I didn?t rape Kesha and I have never had sex with her."
?TiK ToK? was the best-selling single of 2010; six years later, Wikipedia still had the song listed as the #3 best-selling digital single of all time with 15 million copies sold. (Carly Rae Jepsen?s hit ?Call Me Maybe? was at #1, with 18 million digital copies sold)? A humorous mashup of ?TiK ToK? with scenes from Star Trek was a popular meme and got millions of views on YouTube.
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