The past few years have included some of Kesha's darkest days, but the star is set to step into the spotlight at the 2018 Grammy Awards. She's set to perform her power ballad "Praying," the writing of which "felt like an emotional raw victory for myself, one step closer to healing," she said in a Jan. 27 tweet. And Kesha's looks at the 2018 Grammys are shaping up to be as powerful as she is.
Kesha walked the red carpet wearing a royal blue pantsuit emblazoned with white detailing. Of course, it's not the first time Kesha has worn a pantsuit, but there's something special about seeing her rock her trademark look tonight. That's because the flowers embroidered on the lapels of her blazer are white roses — the flower many industry professionals are wearing to the 2018 Grammys in support of the Time's Up movement, which aims to end sexual harassment in the workplace and gender violence in Hollywood.
The issue is close to Kesha — and her music. Kesha's latest album, Rainbow, was released by producer Dr. Luke's record label Kemosabe Records. But the album was recorded at Kesha's own expense, The New York Times reported, because as her attorneys in her ongoing legal battle against Dr. Luke. Allegedly, she had been told any music recorded through Kemosabe would have to involve Dr. Luke, whom Kesha had accused of abusing her sexually, physically, and emotionally.
In April 2017, Dr. Luke stepped down as CEO of Kemosabe, and Kesha's Rainbow was released in August 2017. Rainbow up for Best Pop Vocal Album, and it's no surprise "Praying" is also nominated for Best Pop Solo Performance.
Fans still have Kesha's performance to look forward to as the Grammys kick into high gear. But for now, check out the singer's red carpet look below.
What a power look.
Fans got an equally strong look when Kesha performed "Praying." In her tweets on Jan. 27, she said she "needed this song in a very real way" and that she was "nervous and overwhelmed" ahead of her Grammys performance. Kesha also reached out to fans for whom the song might have personal meaning, saying, "If you need it, I hope this song finds you."
Other stars wearing white roses to the Grammys included Lady Gaga, Pink, and Kelly Clarkson. The call for white roses was put out by the group Voices In Entertainment, which sent out an open letter the week before the Grammys, asking celebrities to wear white roses to the ceremony. According to Entertainment Weekly, the letter read,
"As we are inspired by the #timesup campaign, we are encouraging the artists that we work with and our colleagues attending the 60th Annual Grammy Awards in New York City to wear a white rose to the ceremony on Sunday, January 28th. We choose the white rose because historically it stands for hope, peace, sympathy and resistance."
While everyone wearing a white rose is making a statement that justice is coming for people who sexually harass and abuse others, Kesha's incorporation of the rose into her outfit is simultaneously subtle and powerful. Her battle against Dr. Luke has been ongoing since 2013. In a 2016 statement, she expressed the desire to just "be able to make music without being afraid, scared, or abused," reported Rolling Stone. She added, "This case has never been about a renegotiation of my record contract — it was never about getting a bigger, or a better, deal. This is about being free from my abuser. I would be willing to work with Sony if they do the right thing and break all ties that bind me to my abuser."
Kesha's presence and performance at the 2018 Grammys are a statement all their own.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, call the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline at 800-656-HOPE (4673) or visit online.rainn.org.