How rich is Kesha? Despite the apparent circumstances recently coming to light about how her career’s been managed, the successful results are clear.
Kesha’s net worth is $25 million as of 2016, a respectable amount given her young age and having only been active since 2005 and with only two studio albums released.
Kesha was raised by her mother, also a singer-songwriter, and has been involved in music for almost her entire life. Her personal life also has many points of interest: she claims to have no idea who her father is and is bisexual. She’s also a vegetarian and even an ordained minister. She has also suffered from an eating disorder in the past. But of most interest to people now is her ongoing legal conflict with producer Lukasz Sebastian “Dr. Luke” Gottwald, whom Kesha claims has sexually assaulted and abused her. An attempt to get out of her contract and away from him was rejected by the judge.
Early Music Career
Kesha Rose Sebert was born on March 1, 1987 in Los Angeles to Patricia Rose “Pebe” Sebert, a single mother and one-time singer-songwriter. As noted above, she claims to not know her dad, but a man, Bob Chamberlain, claimed to be her dad in 2011, using what he claimed were authentic pictures and letters as proof. Requiring welfare and food stamps to survive, Pebe would move the family to Nashville in 1991 when she finally signed a new publishing contract, bringing Kesha and her brothers with her to the office regularly and encouraging her daughter to sing after discovering her ability.
Besides signing, her mom taught her how to write songs in their free time, and the teenage Kesha played the trumpet and saxophone for her school’s marching band. She would go on to drop out of college to focus on a potential music career, despite a near-perfect SAT score and full scholarship. She took up song-writing lessons and record demos, which her mother would give to people of influence. One of these tapes eventually made it to Dr. Luke, who liked what he heard—what’s since been dubbed as “a gobsmackingly awful trip-hop track”—leading him to sign an 18-year-old Kesha to Kemosabe Entertainment’s music publishing branch, Prescription Songs, in 2005.
Working with Dr. Luke
Dr. Luke’s involvement at first was minimal, focusing his attention on other artists, namely Kelly Clarkson, which led Kesha to hire a management company to get her first big break (they would later sue each other over the terms after she was successful). She took up some minor writing and other music gigs in the meantime, such as appearing in a video for friend Katy Perry, but her main source of income at the time came from working as a waitress on the side.
Her first mainstream exposure came from collaborating with Flo Rida for his hit single “Right Round,” which happened by accident after she walked into a recording session. However, she received no money for it and chose not to appear in the song’s music video, wanting to earn her fame her way.
Kesha’s Big Break
Kesha’s net worth started to rise when she eventually went on to sign a multi-album deal with RCA Records in 2009, and it didn’t take long for it to see the light of day; after all, she had spent six years preparing content for the album, having wrote as many as 200 songs. Produced by Dr. Luke and consisting mostly of electropop, her Animal album debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart and sold over two million copies worldwide, with the lead single, “Tik Tok,” breaking the record for highest single-week sales in the U.S. It was even used for the opening of an episode of The Simpsons.
Her first tour, which was based on Animal and a later EP, Cannibal, followed in 2011. Needless to say, the album did wonders for Kesha’s net worth. Her second album, Warrior, released in November 2012, and while still performing well, it failed to reach the same heights in charts and sales that Animal did. The album also received a subsequent tour, which ended in mid-September 2015 and had a significantly greater amount of dates than the last one.
Ongoing Legal Battle and Impact on Future Net Worth
At present, Kesha is embroiled in a heated legal case with Dr. Luke in an attempt to be released from her recording contract with him. The star claims he physically and sexually assaulted her as early as 2005, shortly after he signed her, including the use of drugs and alcohol to sedate her. Dr Luke argued these claims are false and merely an attempt by Kesha to escape her legally binding contract. The judge denied the motion, saying, “There has been no showing of irreparable harm,” meaning Kesha will remain under contract with Kemosabe Records—and under the man she claims has done unspeakable things to her. The impact this decision will have on Kesha’s net worth, if not her entire future, remains to be seen. The singer has already cancelled one upcoming concert in Chicago for “personal reasons.”