Singer Kesha has been in the news lately less for her music and more for her legal battles with producer Dr. Luke. It has a lot of people wondering just how much money is left in the pop star’s bank account since she hasn’t released new music since her 2012 album Warrior. These legal proceedings have definitely taken a hit on her bank account, but how much is Kesha worth today?
Kesha’s Net Worth as of 2018: $9 million
So how did Kesha amass so much money? A lot of work, for one thing. We break it down for you below.
2005 – 2009Bryan Bedder/Getty Images
In 2005 at age 18, Kesha was signed to Dr. Luke’s label, Kemosabe Entertainment, and his music publishing company, Prescription Songs. Sony Music Entertainment partnered with Dr. Luke to create Kemosabe Records.
Dr. Luke became preoccupied with other incoming projects, having enjoyed success writing and producing for pop star Kelly Clarkson’s album, Breakaway. Kesha worked as a waitress in Los Angeles to help her income and started stylizing her name as Ke$ha, explaining the dollar sign as an ironic gesture.
Kesha started her career singing background vocals on singles like “Nothing in This World” by Paris Hilton and “Lace and Leather” by Britney Spears in 2008. She also appeared in friend Katy Perry‘s music video for her song “I Kissed a Girl.”
Her big break came in early 2009 after appearing on rapper Flo Rida’s number one single, “Right Round.” The collaboration happened by accident; she had walked into a recording session for the song with Flo Rida and Dr. Luke. In fact, she was uncredited and did not collect any money for the hit.
2009 – 2011Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images
After failing to negotiate with Lava Records and Atlantic Records in 2009, Kesha signed a multi-album deal with RCA Records through Dr. Luke’s imprint. Having spent the previous six years working on material for her debut album, she began putting finishing touches to the album with Luke and Max Martin.
Animal debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 when it was released in January 2010. It was certified platinum in the United States and had sold two million albums worldwide by September. The lead single of the album, “Tik Tok,” broke the record in the United States for the highest single week sales, selling 610,000 digital downloads, the highest ever by a female artist since tracking began in 2003. As of 2015, “Tik Tok” has sold about 15 million copies, becoming the second best-selling single in the digital history andg the most sold single in history by a female solo artist. Animal was estimated to have earned $4,329,000.
Kesha was also featured on two top ten singles by musician Taio Cruz and electro-pop duo 3OH!3.
In November 2010, Animal was re-released with a companion extended play, Cannibal. The lead single taken from Cannibal, “We R Who We R” debuted at the top of the Billboard Hot 100. Cannibal brought in about $3,246,750 in earnings.
2012 – 2013Mark Davis/Getty Images for KCA
Kesha’s second studio album, Warrior was released on November 30, 2012. She began writing for the album while on her own headlining tour in 2011. To coincide with the release of the album, Kesha released an illustrated autobiography, My Crazy Beautiful Life, through Touchstone Books in November 2012. The first single taken from Warrior was “Die Young.” The song debuted at number thirteen on Billboard Hot 100 and eventually peaked at number 2. The earnings from Warrior were estimated to be over $6,990,000. In addition, the Deluxe edition of the album earned Kesha an estimated $5,681,800.
On October 7, 2013, Kesha and Pitbull released a collaboration, “Timber,” produced by Dr. Luke, which was an international commercial success and became Kesha’s third number-one and her eleventh top 10 single on the Hot 100 chart.In May 2013, Kesha kicked off the start of her tour. After the first North American leg, the tour went to Europe in July 2013, and then came back to North America for another leg in August and September 2013. The tour then played various shows in Asia and North America in the fall of 2013. The first North American leg, with the exception of two shows, was co-headlined with Pitbull.
During 2013, Kesha’s reality television show, Kesha: My Crazy Beautiful Life, aired on MTV.
2014 – 2016Katie Stratton/Getty Images
In 2014, it was estimated that Kesha was worth $40 million.
In January 2014, Kesha checked into rehab for an eating disorder. Her mother, Pebe Sebert, told Celebuzz, “Three months after she signed with [Dr. Luke] she had been dieting and he told her she wasn’t in shape enough. She was dieting and she became bulimic. I remember over a period of a few months she got really skinny and she said she was running Runyon Canyon and just eating well. The truth is she was throwing up. I didn’t know until much later because she said she would quit.” She stayed there for six months.
In June 2014, Kesha claimed a seat as an Expert in ABC’s Rising Star alongside Brad Paisley and Ludacris.
Kesha’s claims against Dr. Luke became public for the first time in October 2014, but the producer filed a counterclaim saying she was just trying to get out of her contract. She later added Sony as a defendant.
In June 2015, Kesha sold her three-bedroom Venice, California home for $1.849 million.
In February 2016, the court sided with Dr. Luke and Sony that Kesha had to remain under her current contract. According to documents filed in the suit, Dr. Luke’s company spent $11 million to develop Kesha’s career. It was alleged that Dr. Luke has withheld royalties during this period leaving her with no income.
Singer Taylor Swift donated $250,000 to Kesha to support her in the trying time.
Although Kesha hasn’t released any new music of her own, that doesn’t mean she’s stopped writing entirely. As of 2017, Kesha received writing credits for Iggy Azalea’s song “I Got That Boom Boom” for her album Digital Distortion.
A year following the allegations between Dr. Luke and Monica Cornia, Kesha wants to “be free from her abuser and rebuild her physical, emotional, and mental health”, as written by her attorney in her court papers. Kesha pleads for the jurist to reconsider her contract and allow her to walk away. Dr. Luke has denied any and all claims of abuse, however emails between him and Cornia imply that abuse relating to eating disorders did indeed occur.
What happens next is anyone’s guess, but we can all agree on one thing – we just want Kesha to be able to do what she loves.
Kesha Net paid a tribute to RecordingAcad & MusiCares Organization: ‘Thank You For Everything That You Do’.