Kesha chats all things sad songs, stage nerves and being her own big sister
OK we're totally downplaying it because, to be perfectly honest, we're still on a high. It's been a while since Kesha's made an appearance in the Live Lounge or, indeed, since she's paid London a visit (in her own words: "it's been a hot minute!") so today felt extra special, y'know?
Performing her latest track, Learn To Let Go, and covering Marshmello's Silence, Kesha more than proved why she's one of our ultimate faves. Post-performance, we sat down with the star to chat all things sad songs, stage nerves and sending good vibes out into the world.
She dished about the making of Learn To Let Go
Kesha kicked off Live Lounge proceedings by giving us a pitch perfect rendition of Learn To Let Go, her latest single from the much-anticipated album, Rainbow. To paraphrase Katy Perry (hey, K Pez!) we'd describe the track as 'purposeful pop' and it seems as though Kesha agrees...
It's a little bit like I'm being a big sister to myself and [saying] 'come on, just let go of that stuff and you'll be much freer and lighter and happier'Kesha
"It's like a pop song and I am well aware that it's a pop song but I think the subject matter is actually me talking to myself about [letting] go of the stuff in your past that doesn't do positive things for you anymore. So actually the subject matter of it is - it's not like serious but it is really emotionally, like, I had to dig deep for that one.
But it's a pop song, so it's like this weird dichotomy between being this big pop song that I hear everybody sings along to but what I'm singing about is learning to let go of things in the past that have hurt me or break ups or things that are painful memories. That one's just a really special, weird song because the way it came together too, when I wrote it with my mum and a friend, and the whole making of it was bizarre and very serendipitous and really kind of therapeutic, so it's a special song to me.
"It's a little bit like I'm being a big sister to myself and being like 'come on, just let go of that stuff and you'll be much freer and lighter and happier' and that's what it's about."
She gave us the 411 on the hectic lifestyle of an artist (spoiler alert: it's TIRING!)
It's been T-minus 16 hours since Kesha raised the roof off of the Electric Brixton, a few days since she performed at the EMAs and a matter of minutes since she serenaded us in the Live Lounge, so her current status is a discombobulating combo of adrenaline-fuelled and perpetually tired.
I've been trying to figure out how to wind down now for almost 10 yearsKesha
All things considered, you might assume that Kesha's got the art of winding down well and truly sussed. How did she contain herself after her Brixton gig? Turns out, she didn't...
"You don't contain yourself! You kind of prepare all day for this huge burst, the most massive amount of energy you can think of, and it's so crazy because my fans are the best thing in the world and they'll bring me presents and it's like Christmas and everyone's going wild and we're dancing and sometimes I'm crowd-surfing and there's a cake being thrown around onstage and it's just madness! You don't really come down. I haven't been sleeping.
"I've been trying to figure out how to wind down now for almost 10 years." Anyone else tired on Kesha's behalf? SAME!
She confirmed that, yes, even stars get the jitters (and serenaded us with Marshmello's Silence)
Adapting to different environments is a big part of being an artist, especially when you're touring, and it's easy to assume that big stars have their nerves in check at all times. From the stage to the radio station, does Kesha experience the jitters, like us mere mortals, or is this biz second nature now?
"When I perform on stage I get nervous before the show but then, as soon as my feet hit the stage, the nerves go away and I just get excited because I see the faces of my fans. It's almost like walking into a party with all your friends. But on the radio, it's so nerve-wracking because you don't see the people you're performing to. So you're like 'I hope it's good, I hope they like it, I hope they're fans!' because a lot of people might not be fans, but you're performing to them as they're driving or whatever and you just hope that they like what they hear."
She revealed which songs make her cry when she sings them
This one's for all you criers out there (ahem, us): Kesha is crying along with you. Quite how she's figured out how to sing beautifully through the tears is still a mystery to us (we can't formulate a sentence when we're blubbering) but crying onstage is actually a pretty common occurrence when you're Kesha and your back-catalogue is chockablock with emotional numbers.
A lot of the slow ones can make me cry. Any of the slow ones can make me cry! Even some of the fast ones can make me cry. I'm very emotional!Kesha
"A lot of the slow ones can make me cry. Any of the slow ones can make me cry! Even some of the fast ones can make me cry. I'm very emotional! Obviously Praying is an emotional song, so that one can sometimes get hard. And Rainbow - the title track - is super emotional, so personal, so that one sometimes when I sing it and I see my fans singing along.
"I've been dreaming of going on the Rainbow tour for years, so it's like it's finally happened and came to fruition and I just feel so lucky to see the people liking the music and singing along with me and that's kind of what I've been dreaming of for so long, finally come to life. So that moment of just 'life is so crazy', it always gets me."
And, finally, she told us what her favourite part of touring is...
Animals, assemble!!! Kesha's love for her fans is unparalleled. Don't believe us? Maybe you'll believe the woman herself...
"Honestly [my favourite part] is just my fans, getting to see them and reconnect with them has been the most amazing thing ever because I feel like I was craving getting onstage and playing these shows, and I finally get to get out and play music that I'm so proud of and so excited about and my fans are equally as excited... They all have the rainbow face paint that I did for some of my pictures and I just love seeing that.
"It just makes me happy to know that people are having a happy night by coming to my show and we're having a good night together, because sometimes days can suck and the world can be hard and people go through really hard things and I know that, so it's my favourite thing having an hour and a half to two hours - whatever time I'm onstage! - just being a pure moment of bliss. My favourite thing is my fans."
No, YOU'RE crying.