Kesha and the Backstory of ‘Praying’

After four long years, Kesha has finally returned to the music scene with her new single “Praying,” and it’s truly a triumphant return.

Due to a three-year-long lawsuit with her former producer Dr. Luke, Kesha was unable to release music, despite having “hundreds of songs written.”

The single is a total surprise as Kesha only announced it yesterday in an Instagram video. She said,

“Your support and love and kindness has gotten me through hands-down the hardest time of my entire life. My new song, ‘Praying,’ is coming out tomorrow, and I couldn’t have done this without you. I f—ing love you.”

The song “Praying” was written with the help of Ryan Lewis, of Macklemore, and comes with a full music video.

“Praying” directly addresses Kesha’s struggles with depression and identity. The speaking monolog starts off:

“Am I dead? Or is this one of those dreams, those horrible dreams that seem like they last forever?… If there is a God or whatever, something, somewhere, why have I been abandoned by everyone and everything I’ve ever known, I’ve ever loved?”

Kesha also takes aim at Dr. Luke directly, singing,

“You brought the flames and you put me through hell/ I had to learn how to fight for myself/ And we both know all the truth I could tell/ I’ll just say this: I wish you farewell.”

She explained in a Lenny Letter essay,

“This song is about coming to feel empathy for someone else even if they hurt you or scare you. It’s a song about learning to be proud of the person you are even during low moments when you feel alone. It’s also about hoping everyone, even someone who hurt you, can heal.”

She added in her Instagram post,

“I hope this song reaches people who are in the midst of struggles, to let them know that no matter how bad it seems now, you can get through it. If you have love and truth on your side, you will never be defeated. don’t give up on yourself. that’s the key.”

Kesha has been through a lot. Her very public lawsuit with Dr. Luke included claims of sexual assault, as well as claims that he encouraged her anorexia.

Understandably, Kesha went through a severe depression and said,

“There were so many days, months even when I didn’t want to get out of bed. I spent all day wanting to go to sleep, and then when I did fall asleep, I had horrible night terrors where I would physically cry and scream through the dark.”

But Kesha says she is finally in a better place, and her music helped her get there.

“I have channeled my feelings of severe hopelessness and depression, I’ve overcome obstacles, and I have found strength in myself even when it felt out of reach. I’ve found what I had thought was an unobtainable place of peace.”

We couldn’t be more proud of you, Kesha!

You can watch the video for “Praying” below.


Kesha On Realizing She Needed Help For Eating Disorder: I Didn’t Even Know How To Eat

Praying (Official Video) by Kesha on VEVO.

Lena Finkel
Lena Finkel is the Editor and Founder of Femestella. Prior to starting Femestella, she worked at People, InStyle, Tiger Beat, and Sesame Workshop (aka Sesame Street). She loves all things Real Housewives and Vanderpump Rules. When she's not busy binge-watching TV, you can find her hanging out with her tuxedo cat Tom.