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Kelly Clarkson Claims Record Label Blackmailed Her to Work With Dr. Luke on ‘Since U Been Gone’

"He's kind of demeaning... [and] he’s lied a lot"

In the wake of Kesha’s ongoing legal battle with pop producer and alleged rapist Dr. Luke, fellow chart topper (and fellow Sony artist) Kelly Clarkson has chimed in with her views of the man in question. During a recent interview with KIIS 106.5, an Australian radio station, the American Idol alum and “Piece By Piece” singer-songwriter conceded that she’d been forced to work with Luke (born Lukasz Gottwald) against her will.

“I’ll be honest about the guy, but I don’t know that situation,” Clarkson said of Gottwield. “He’s not a good person, to me. We’ve clashed… When so many artists don’t like you, that says something. I only worked with him because literally I was blackmailed by my label… It was a really hard time for me. They were like, ‘We will not put your album out if you don’t do this’… We have a whole crew to support, people that depend on us for their livelihood so sometimes you have to make decisions that you just have to swallow that pill.”

Clarkson continued:

We’ve clashed before. He’s difficult to work with, he’s kind of demeaning. Obviously he’s a talented dude but he’s lied a lot. Musically it’s been really hard for me because he will just lie to people and it makes the artist look bad.

Clarkson worked with Luke and Max Martin on her star-launching “Since U Been Gone” in 2004, along with another Breakaway hit, “Behind These Hazel Eyes.” Luke also produced 2009’s “My Life Would Suck Without You.” In the immediate wake of a judge refusing to grant Kesha’s injunction to record without Luke last month, Clarkson had this to say:

Three years ago, record label exec Clive Davis released a memoir citing Clarkson’s hatred of working with Luke:

Kelly didn’t like it. Max and Luke were merciless in pursuit of getting the right performance for their song. Kelly got her back up, and, from her perspective, she had a horrible experience in the studio. She’d never work with them again, she said … I could not have been more thrilled… In the meantime, before any of this transpired, Kelly had requested a meeting with me, which was scheduled for the day after the international meeting…  Kelly began the meeting by saying, ‘I want to be direct and to the point. I hate ‘Since U Been Gone,’ and I hate ‘Behind These Hazel Eyes.’ I didn’t like working with Max Martin and Dr. Luke, and I don’t like the end product. I really want both songs off of my album.’… It was a very tough conversation, and it didn’t get any easier when Kelly burst into hysterical sobbing. We all just sat there as she cried for several minutes. No one knew what to say. Then she left to go to the ladies’ room. When she came back the tension in the room was thick.”

Needless to say, Davis didn’t cut either “Since” or “Hazel” from Breakaway. Clarkson has since disputed the claims that she cried in the executive’s office, but her new remarks on formerly being forced to work with Luke certainly echo Davis’ memory of their meetings more than a decade ago.