Kesha received the Visibility Award from the Human Rights Campaign during a gala in Nashville. She took to the stage to deliver an emotional acceptance speech which you can see in its entirety here. Alluding to her legal battle to free herself from producer Dr. Luke, she thanked the audience for their support.
The 29-year-old singer-songwriter has been, of late, beleaguered by a setback the legal battle free herself from the producer, Dr. Luke, at Sony Music whom she alleges has sexually assaulted her. A judge in a Manhattan court denied her release from her recording contract. The #FreeKesha hashtag has been trending for weeks as fans and fellow music artists alike voice their support on social media as well as in real life. She has voiced her gratitude for the international outpouring of support from fans and fellow music artists alike. Recently, Taylor Swift recently made headlines for donating $250,000 to her.
Rarely seen in public, as her music career is now in literal legal limbo, she made an appearance at the awards gala at the Numan Rights Campaign Nashville’s Equality Dinner which was held on Saturday night at at the Renaissance Hotel. The organization which advocates for the LGBT community had honored her with its Visibility Award.
Taking to the stage, after a gracious introduction from singer Stephen Wrabel, Kesha said in part, “For any of you who know, I’m going through some personal things that have been really intense and hard lately. And I just want to say thank you for any support I’ve received.”
She went on to deliver an inspiring message of empowerment, as she reminisced about her own struggles growing up in Nashville. She said, “I often felt like a misfit, so I often gravitated towards other social outsiders, many in the LGBT community, although I didn’t know what LGBT meant. We just knew we got bullied for being ourselves, shamed for being different and encouraged to hide the things that made us unique.”
Continuing, Kesha told the audience, “My message to you today is don’t be afraid to speak up against any injustice you experience. Don’t let people scare and shame you into changing the things about yourself that make you unique. Those are the qualities that will make your life magical and special. Never deny yourself that. We can’t be afraid to fight for our own dignity. These are our basic human rights.”
The full video is below and, not surprisingly, her speech is drawing much notice, in part as it is such a rare appearance. Last month, Kesha canceled on a concert performance in Chicago, at Loyola University in Chicago, citing, via a written statement “personal reasons.”
See photos and the full video of Kesha’s acceptance speech in Nashville below.