A deposition made by Lady Gaga in the legal battle between the singer Kesha and her former producer, Dr. Luke, whom she has accused of sexually assaulting her, makes for extraordinary reading.
The deposition took place in September 2017 and was first published, with heavy redactions last year, along with those of Katy Perry, Kelly Clarkson and label bosses, but now a fuller version of Gaga’s transcript has been obtained by website The Blast.
It shows how, during the deposition, Gaga became so irate with Luke’s lawyer’s line of questioning that she told him he “should be ashamed” of herself for suggesting Kesha invented the abuse.
In 2014, Kesha accused Dr. Luke of forcing her to take a date rape drug and then taking advantage of her in a hotel room. He denied the allegation, and Kesha dropped her California suits against him in respect of the allegation in 2016, but other suits continued in New York.
Kesha has claimed that the producer denied her profits from her work including the smash single "Tik Tok." Dr. Luke, in turn, filed a defamation claim and framed her attempts to get out of the record deal as extortion.
Gaga was crying when the 2017 deposition began, The Blast reports, and her lawyer stated that while she was ready to testify, “As she has publicly stated in other contexts, as a sex abuse survivor, and I know this from my own personal experience with family members, there are trigger events, and this deposition has proved to be a trigger event for Ms. Germanotta.”
During the deposition, Gaga said she came to Luke’s home studio where Kesha was in a back room with only underwear on.
She said, “What I recall was her immense sadness and depression and fear. She was visibly very different than when I had seen her before, and—but I can’t say specifically what we spoke about. I just recall it was emotional and I wanted to be there for her.”
Luke’s lawyer asked Gaga if she thought being accused of rape had damaged the producer’s reputation.
Gaga replied: “Reputation, if you are asking about his reputation in the world, I don’t feel at liberty to speak for the entire world. So if you are asking what my view is of his reputation, I made my view of him and his reputation when I saw her in that back room. That was an image that—of something that happened to me, and I felt and knew in my heart that she was telling the truth, and I believe her.”
Luke’s lawyer: “With respect to Mr. Gottwald himself, you have absolutely no personal knowledge or information as to any interaction between him and Ms. Sebert, correct, physical or otherwise?”
Gaga: “Yes, I do have knowledge… She told me he assaulted her.”
When the lawyer asked if her information was based purely on Kesha’s account, Gaga replied: “Well, you know, when men assault women, they don’t invite people over to watch.”
Lawyer: “But, again, there are people that are falsely accused of rape, aren’t there? You think there has never been a false accusation of rape?”
Gaga: “How about all of the women that are accused of being liars and how she was slut shamed in front of the world, how about that?”
In response to another question taking a similar line, Gaga said: “I have factual knowledge of her depression. I have factual knowledge of her need for support and love. I have factual knowledge of the spiral that I watched that girl go down. I have factual knowledge of trauma. I am informed and intelligent about this issue. That girl has experienced serious trauma and she is in the middle of the right now. And you are all a party to it.”
According to The Blast, Gaga added, “Why on earth would this girl tell the entire world this happened? Why on earth? Do you know what it’s like for survivors? Do you know what it’s like to tell people? Don’t you roll you eyes at me. You should be ashamed of yourself.”