August 27, 2013

Ke$ha Will Perform at Cornell’s Barton Hall Sept. 29

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Pop artist Ke$ha will be performing at Barton Hall on Sept. 29, the Cornell Concert Commission confirmed Tuesday.

Currently on tour promoting her 2012 album Warrior, Ke$ha is best known for her chart-topping singles, which include “Tik Tok,” “We R Who We R,” and most recently “Crazy Kids.”

Ke$ha, in collaboration with rock band The Flaming Lips, is also expected to be releasing a rock album entitled Lip$ha later this year.

Peter Schwartz ’14, executive director of the CCC, said he expects students will be very excited for the concert because Ke$ha is known for her “engaging and energetic live shows.”

“I think it would be hard to find a student on this campus that hasn’t danced to a Ke$ha song at least once,” Schwartz said.

“Love her or hate her, which is sometimes just as fun, there’s no denying that she is a force to be reckoned with in the pop world.”

Tickets will be on sale to students for $25 beginning Sept. 4 and to the general public for $33 beginning Sept. 5.

If available, tickets on the day of the show will be $30 for students and $40 for the general public.

The announcement of Ke$ha’s upcoming visit to Cornell will undoubtedly be met with reactions ranging on a spectrum from elation to vitriol. But whether you view her as an unabashed and deliberately unpolished girl-next-house-party dose of fun or a shameless manipulator of America’s cheap musical sensibilities and tendency towards the obnoxious and digestible, there’s no arguing that Ke$ha is a big-name score for the Cornell Concert Commission.

As it stands, Ke$ha’s single “Tik Tok” is the most-sold single in history by a female solo artist, and her first album, Animal, debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 in 2010, summing up a year in which the odds-defying yet-another-nutso-popstar had already shelled out two Number One and four Top Ten singles.

If you aren’t compelled by Ke$ha’s commercial success, you can still have some fun trying to figure out the absolute riddle that is her musical evolution. The girl who woke up “feeling like P-Diddy,” puked in Paris Hilton’s closet and giggled endlessly at “the popo” is also inexplicably a devotee of Johnny Cash, a Beastie Boys fan-girl, a sought-after songwriter and an ordained minister.

True, first-generation Ke$ha enjoyed about three seconds of praise followed by endless months of backlash. Even to the drunkest of fourteen year-olds it was clear that the Princess of Trash boasted little more than some impromptu synth-yodeling, white-girl “talky” rap, and hyper-synthetic Atari-reminiscent backdrops. With more snark than Taylor Swift, less of the aloof ambiguity of Lady Gaga and none of Katy Perry’s cute, the world would soon be sick of the patron saint of alcohol-poisoning, wine-stained sofas and way-too-“tight-ass rocker pants.”

But Ke$ha’s second album, Warrior, included such surprises as a deconstructed cover of the Dolly Parton hit “Old Flames Can’t Hold a Candle to You,” scarcely-auto-tuned and country-inspired ballads “Past Lives” and “Wonderland” and the 1970’s rock tune “Only Wanna Dance With U,” featuring The Strokes.

This isn’t to say we’ve said goodbye forever to the good ‘ole glitter and grime Ke$ha: songs like “Crazy Kids,” “All That Matters,” “C’Mon” and “Die Young” make the same raunchy, party girl promises about “feelin’ like a high schooler, sippin’ on a warm wine cooler” and “stripping down to dirty socks.”

What Warrior has proven without a doubt is that Ke$ha herself is becoming more and more complicated of a production. The dramatic eye-glitter that she wears on stage is allegedly an A Clockwork Orange reference and her image-incongruous smarts are not the stuff of urban legend — she confirmed on NPR that she received near-perfect SAT scores and often spent after-school fun-time at a local college listening to seminars on Cold War history.

Obvious intellect paired with the career we’ve seen thus far begs the question: What would all of you smarty-pants do for a few years of fame and a butt-load of money? Pretend to be a binge-drinking sex-loon and wear your hair like 1980’s Glenn Close? Brush your teeth with a bottle of Jack?  Take a few “hot mess” slams and roll with it?

That’s what I thought.

In the age of turning our celebrities into “real people”, in which Nicki Minaj is an amiable gal pal on American Idol and James Franco mocks his own hipster nonsense in This is the End, in which Beyoncé is a mama and our president is a dude you could have a beer with, a persona that is still a mystery is a rarity. So Clockwork your glitter and find some room-temperature whiskey. Put your “hot pants on and up.” Most of all, leave your previous perceptions at the doors to Barton, because decoding Ke$ha is a challenge befitting a crowd of Cornell kiddos.

Or whatever, maybe just enjoy a shiny, hazy night of booze and nonsense. I like your beard.

Original Author: Kaitlyn Tiffany