Kesha's case against Dr. Luke, AKA Lukasz Gottwald, has been dealt one of the most savage legal blows since it began, certainly since she was denied an injunction last year.
The Timber singer is trying to get out of her contract legally after claiming her former producer raped her. But so far all she's gotten is sued by Gottwald for trying to ruin his name with the allegations.
Kesha previously tried to get out of her contract by describing her alleged rape as a hate crime on the part of Dr. Luke — but that was rebuffed.
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This time, she attempted to amend her countersuit against the producer, trying two new tactics to argue her case.
In the first, she argued recording artists should have a legal backdoor available to them, like divorce for married couples. Her argument went:
"You can get a divorce from an abusive spouse. You can dissolve a partnership if the relationship becomes irreconcilable. The same opportunity — to be liberated from the physical, emotional, and financial bondage of a destructive relationship — should be available to a recording artist."
The "abuse" named in Kesha's argument was actually breach of contract due to failure to pay her royalties. Dr. Luke's team said Kesha failed to give them proper notice of lack of payment and a standard 30-day cure period in which to pay her. (They also said it was she who owed Dr. Luke money and not the other way around!)
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New York Supreme Court Justice Shirley Kornreich ruled against the idea Kesha should be afforded such an out, agreeing with Dr. Luke that she did not give proper notice about the payment.
The next strategy was a long shot — one that would affect countless recording artists if the judge had set the precedent of accepting it.
Kesha argued that California's contract limit should be applied to her:
"To protect young, newly discovered recording artists from this precise manner of exploitation in quasi-lifetime un-severable professional relationships, California labor law requires all music contracts to end within seven years of execution."
As much as that sounds like a reasonable law, Kornreich denied the approach, saying there was not enough public interest to override New York law, which has no such limit.
Oh well. Better luck next time, Kesha!
[Image via FayesVision/WENN.]
Tags: business blitz, dr. luke, kesha, lawsuit, legal matters, music minute, new york, shirley kornreich, sony