Lady Gaga Subpoenaed Over Dr. Luke’s Defamation Lawsuit Against Kesha
UPDATE: Lady Gaga will appear for a deposition next month as part of Kesha and Lukasz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald legal battle, according to E! News. “Lady Gaga has always been prepared to testify so long as reasonable limitations were established. That has now been accomplished,” a lawyer for the singer tells Rolling Stone.
Lukasz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald’s legal team subpoenaed Lady Gaga as part of the producer’s defamation lawsuit against Kesha, who has, in her own lawsuit, accused Dr. Luke of sexual assault.
“In connection with Dr. Luke’s defamation claims against Kesha, various third parties are being deposed by both sides, including celebrities,” Gottwald’s rep said in a statement.
“Dr. Luke’s counsel served a subpoena on Lady Gaga because she has relevant information regarding, among other things, false statements about Dr. Luke made to her by Kesha. This motion has become necessary because Dr. Luke’s counsel has not been able to obtain, despite repeated request[s], a deposition date from Lady Gaga.”
A representative for Lady Gaga told Rolling Stone, “As Lady Gaga’s legal team will present to the court, she has provided all of the relevant information in her possession and is at most an ancillary witness in this process. Dr. Luke’s team is attempting to manipulate the truth and draw press attention to their case by exaggerating Lady Gaga’s role and falsely accusing her of dodging reasonable requests.”
Representatives for Kesha did not respond to Rolling Stone‘s request for comment.
Lady Gaga has been one of Kesha’s most vocal supporters during the “Tik Tok” singer’s arduous legal battle with Dr. Luke, who Kesha initially sued in 2014 in an attempt to void her contract with the producer’s Kemosabe Records. When Kesha’s lawsuit was first filed, she accused Dr. Luke of “sexually, physically, verbally, and emotionally” abusing her. Gottwald, who denied all accusations, responded with his own countersuit accusing Kesha of defamation.
After a New York judge denied Kesha’s injunction that would have severed her professional relationship with Dr. Luke, Gaga turned to social media to reiterate her support for Kesha.
“The very reason women don’t speak up for years is the fear that no one will believe them or their abuser has threatened their life or life of their loved ones/livelihood in order to keep their victim quiet and under control,” Gaga wrote at the time. “What happened to Kesha has happened to many female artists, including myself, and it will affect her for the rest of her life.”
“No one needs to validate Kesha,” she continued. “Why is victim always the ‘liar’? Why do we let people in a position of power get away with behaving inhumanely? These guys hide behind the legal system and it’s their litigious behavior that is precisely what they use to rape these girls. ‘Give me what I want or else I will come after you’ and they have all the money and the resources to do it.”
Gaga was further roped into the Kesha-Luke legal battle when Kesha’s then-lawyer Mark Geragos insinuated on Twitter that the person who sexually assaulted a then-19-year-old Gaga – as documented on the Artpop track “Swine” – was Dr. Luke. The producer then sued Geragos for defamation, at which point the attorney deleted the tweets.
In a statement to Rolling Stone in February 2016, Gaga’s rep said, “This ridiculous, manufactured link between Lady Gaga and the Kesha/Dr. Luke lawsuit is utterly incomprehensible. This simply isn’t true and how dare someone take advantage of such a sensitive matter.”
In December 2016, Kesha entered text messages that she sent to Gaga in February 2016 into evidence; the details of the text messages remain confidential after the judge received and sealed the new evidence.
TMZ reported Saturday that Dr. Luke’s subpoena request to Gaga is in relation to that text conversation, as when Kesha handed it over to the judge as evidence, it was “heavily redacted” and “incomprehensible.” Gaga has offered to provide a written statement regarding the matter, but Dr. Luke’s lawyers prefer to question the singer during a three-hour deposition. No set date has been announced for Gaga’s deposition.
Gottwald’s lawyers are asking Gaga – whom they claim contributed to the “smear campaign” against their client and also pressured Sony Music to cut ties with the producer – to testify regarding the full contents of the text conversation. In April of this year, Sony Music announced that Dr. Luke was no longer the CEO of Kemosabe Records, the label the producer established in 2011.