Ke$ha, A Look Behind the Dollar Sign

With her feature single, “Tik Tok”, shattering Internet download records, and the release today of her debut album, Animal, 22-year old Kesha Sebert, a/k/a, Ke$ha is one of the hottest new faces on the music scene.

Like Lady GaGa, though Ke$ha has been involved in music for most of her young adult life, she was not on any pop-culture radar just a year ago.  In fact, she was sleeping in her car.

The daughter of a struggling country music singer-songwriter, Ke$ha dropped out of high school and moved to L.A. to pursue her musical dreams.  Ke$ha soon discovered the reality of such a move — busting your tail 24-7 to catch any break while being broke, broker, and brokest.  Rumor has it Ke$ha broke into Prince’s home to leave a demo recording.  That rookie move proved to be an epic fail for the young music artist, who was thrown out of the home and never received word on her demo.

Nevertheless, the girl got talent, and her songs were soon being recorded by other artists, such as The Veronicas’ single, “This Love”.  Additionally, Ke$ha’s bumming around the studios was paying off as she was asked to sing backup for Britney Spears’ “Lace and Leather”, appeared in Katy Perry’s “I Kissed a Girl” video, and, finally, last year, caught her big break providing the (uncredited) female vocals in Flo Rida’s mega-hit “Right Round”.

This got Ke$ha a contract with RCA Records and marching orders to record her debut album.  In addition, to her vocal work in the studio, Ke$ha continued to pursue her songwriting career, including co-writing the title track for Miley Cyrus’ Time of Our Lives album.

Ke$ha’s first single of her own, “Tik Tok”, reached the U.S. radio airwaves in October of this past year and generated immediate buzz worldwide.  It was just a week ago that “Tik Tok”, in its second week at the top of Billboard’s Hot 100, was downloaded 610,000 times, breaking the all-time record for downloads-in-a-week for a female music artist (and, ironically, coming in second all-time to Flo Rida’s “Right Round” for the overall record).

“Tik Tok” and Ke$ha’s unique style seems to be the perfect blend of pop riffs, punk-attitude, and the rhythms of a white-girl rapper.  Her own record label calls her a mix of Madonna and The Beastie Boys.  Pretty heady stuff.

Now, Ke$ha gets to face fame and fortune head-on, and answer interviewer questions about her sexuality with such young music artist cliches as:

“I wouldn’t say I’m gay or straight.”

   — Ke$ha, interview in Out Magazine

You see, Ke$ha does not do labels. 

Nevertheless, if debut album, Animal, breaks to the same success as her initial single, Ke$ha better get ready for tons more personally invasive questions, omnipresent photogs, snarky fashion police, and self-titled romance gurus dissecting her every kiss.

Welcome to the game, Ke$ha.