Kesha's Rendition of Bob Dylan's "It Ain't Me, Babe" Proved Her Haters Wrong

Kesha's Rendition of Bob Dylan's "It Ain't Me, Babe" Proved Her Haters Wrong
Source: AP
Source: AP

After a rough week of back and forth with her label, Kesha took the stage at the 2016 Billboard Music Awards to pay tribute to Bob Dylan. In the process, she showed us a side of herself we've too rarely seen. 

Sunday night's song was her first major televised performance since she began her court battle with her producer Dr. Luke in October 2014. Instead of performing one of her hits she wrote with Dr. Luke, she gave a tribute to one of her idols — performing Dylan's classic break-up anthem "It Ain't Me, Babe." 

Kesha sounded absolutely stunning, proving she doesn't need any of his autotune or maximal synths to shine.

Source: Giphy

All last week, Kesha's Billboard Music Awards performance hung in a state of limbo. When Kesha was first announced as talent for the awards show, a wave of rumors suggested that she was planning to make a "statement performance," as TMZ phrased it, which would "make direct references to her ongoing legal battle with Dr. Luke." In response, Dr. Luke's Kemosabe Records suspended her performance. 

Kesha's mother and Lady Gaga both criticized the record label's move, with Gaga comparing Dr. Luke to Disney villain Ursula from The Little Mermaid, the character that takes Ariel's voice away.

The label only lifted Kesha's suspension after it "obtained assurances," as they wrote in an official statement sent to Mic, "that neither Kesha nor her supporters will use the performance as such a platform."

She didn't even need to address the controversy to create an extremely emotional moment. It gave her fans, who haven't heard a new Kesha album since 2012, life.

How much do you trust the information in this article?

Tom Barnes

Tom Barnes is a senior staff writer at Mic focused on music, activism and the intersection between the two. He's based in New York and can be reached at tom@mic.com.

MORE FROM

‘Girls Trip’ finishes second at the box office, outperforming expectations

The film's success once again demonstrates how diverse films are underestimated at the box office.

‘Insecure’ season two is television for us, by us — and it’s even better than before

Creator Issa Rae shouldn't sweat the Emmy snub — her connection with her core audience is what really makes this series shine.

We talked to military experts about who will win the Iron Throne

Does Dany have a chance? Historians, tacticians and scholars weigh in on the ultimate outcome of 'Game of Thrones.'

‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7, Episode 2 Trailer: New alliances may form in “Stormborn”

Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen may have an unexpected intermediary.

Tyler, the Creator is still a “walking paradox” on the rumor-baiting ‘Flower Boy’

Is he queer? Maybe. Does he know how to use the speculation to further his art? Definitely.

Note to Ryan Murphy: ‘American Horror Story’ reveals don’t need to be a scavenger hunt

The title and premiere date of the seventh season of 'American Horror Story' were revealed Thursday.

‘Girls Trip’ finishes second at the box office, outperforming expectations

The film's success once again demonstrates how diverse films are underestimated at the box office.

‘Insecure’ season two is television for us, by us — and it’s even better than before

Creator Issa Rae shouldn't sweat the Emmy snub — her connection with her core audience is what really makes this series shine.

We talked to military experts about who will win the Iron Throne

Does Dany have a chance? Historians, tacticians and scholars weigh in on the ultimate outcome of 'Game of Thrones.'

‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7, Episode 2 Trailer: New alliances may form in “Stormborn”

Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen may have an unexpected intermediary.

Tyler, the Creator is still a “walking paradox” on the rumor-baiting ‘Flower Boy’

Is he queer? Maybe. Does he know how to use the speculation to further his art? Definitely.

Note to Ryan Murphy: ‘American Horror Story’ reveals don’t need to be a scavenger hunt

The title and premiere date of the seventh season of 'American Horror Story' were revealed Thursday.