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In Defence Of Ke$ha (Yes, Really)

By Nick Levine

Posted on 28 Nov 12

 
 

These days, he may moonlight as a car insurance salesman, but Iggy Pop is still the Godfather of Punk. So what the hell is he doing on a Ke$ha track? Well, they've recorded a sort of duet called 'Dirty Love' and it's got Iggy singing about cockroaches shagging in garbage cans, before Ke$ha delivers the immortal line: "Champagne tastes like piss to me." The leaked track was pulled down yesterday so you'll have to wait to hear it but, trust me, it's sort of amazing.




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Did Ke$ha get the old timer drunk and pretend she was Debbie Harry? If so, maybe she used the same trick on Julian Casablancas and Fab Moretti from The Strokes, and Patrick Carney from The Black Keys. Because they all make cameos on her new album 'Warrior'. Yes, really.

On first glance, Ke$ha seems like a strange playmate for the indie boys. After all, she's about as credible as Phillip Schofield doing politics. She's a 25-year-old woman who has a dollar sign in her name. She's mainly famous for singing the line "tick tock on the clock". And talking of singing, well, she doesn't really, does she? Working out where Auto-Tune ends and vocal actually begins is a thankless task - it's like trying to chip off chocolate from a chocolate HobNob.




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So how's Ke$ha managed to achieve indie credibility? With a big pair of balls. First, she vaulted her way to popstar status without the voice, or the obvious pin-up looks. Then, she impressed the cool crowd with her attitude. And as the hits rack up, she's starting to match this confidence with an ear for a tune. You can call 'TiK ToK', 'We R Who We R' and her new single 'Die Young' "guilty pleasures" but they're simply great pop songs, shamelessly designed to get played on the radio, but not lacking in humour.

The crucial difference between Ke$ha and dullards like Emeli Sandé and Jessie J is her personality - even if that personality does translate as "young, up for it, likes a drink". In interviews, she'll claim she had sex with a ghost or talk about pissing in sinks or come out with lines like "Just because I do pop doesn't mean I'm a cunt, you know". I'd love to lock Ke$ha in a room with Liam Gallagher, a bottle of vodka and a tape recorder. The stories would keep music websites in headlines for weeks.

So here's to Ke$ha, her trashy lyrics and her weird thing for wrinkly old rockers. She told us she likes Mick Jagger on her very first single and now she's singing about 'Dirty Love' with Iggy Pop. Next she wants to hook up with Keith Richards - in the recording studio, natch. I wouldn't bet against her making it happen, would you? 




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