Watch Kesha’s Powerful Billboard Awards Performance, Get Ready to Emote

The song received a standing ovation.

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This article discusses sexual assault. 

After weeks of uncertainty as to whether she was legally allowed to perform, Kesha has just appeared at the Billboard Awards singing a rendition of Bob Dylan’s ‘It Ain’t Me, Babe’ with Ben Folds.

For the last few years, Kesha has been fighting several lawsuits against her former producer and collaborator Dr. Luke, for allegedly assaulting and abusing her since she was 18. This arduous process was made all the worse by the fact that Kesha, who was signed to Dr. Luke’s label under the umbrella of Sony, was unable to record new music without Sony’s involvement — a point which the singer found particularly traumatic.

Dr. Luke’s Kemosabe Records initially pulled the plug on the Billboard performance under the assumption that it made “direct references” to their legal battles, but a few days ago she was given the go ahead. The clip serves as a reminder of Kesha’s incredible voice — it’s been a long time since she has performed a show of this capacity — and the standing ovation from the crowd suggests that she had a lot of support in the room.

1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) offers counselling, support or assistance for anyone who has experienced sexual assault or family violence.