The Story Behind Kesha's "Rainbow" Will Break You And Then Build You Up Again

"I know that this album saved my life."

Kesha's third studio album, Rainbow, finally — finally, finally — was released into the world today. And it is gorgeous in so many ways.


With its release, we got the music video for the album's title track. It's a relatively simple video that features Kesha singing "Rainbow" in a recording studio.

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There's an especially beautiful moment near the beginning, when she sings the chorus a cappella.

And along with that, we got some heartrending words from Kesha herself about how the album and the track came to be, courtesy of a letter published on Refinery29.

🌈 “Rainbow” was the beginning. That song and the lyrics were a letter to myself .. Read my letter:

Kemosabe / Via

In the letter, Kesha recounts her time "alone and scared in rehab for an eating disorder" in 2014. At first the facility she was staying in wouldn't give her access to instruments, but she talked them into giving her an hour a day with a keyboard. "Writing songs is the only way I know how to process things," she explains.

kemosabe / Via

"The whole album idea and tour and everything, came from me crying and singing and playing and dreaming until my hour was up and they took the keyboard away again. Every day I would just cry and play that song because I knew I had to get through that incredibly hard time."

"I knew I had to change and learn to take care of and love myself, and I had no idea how to even begin," Kesha says in the letter of that time. "'Rainbow' was the beginning."

kemosabe / Via

She also references the immensely difficult road in getting the album made, which included a legal battle with producer Dr. Luke, who Kesha accused of sexual assault. "I know that this album saved my life," she writes of Rainbow.

kemosabe / Via

"I just kept saying, 'I’m gonna put out Rainbow, I’m gonna put out Rainbow. I’m gonna do it. I’m gonna put it out. I’m gonna do it, I’m gonna do it.' This idea, and the support I received from fans and total strangers, is what helped me get up every day," she writes. "For a long time, I didn’t know if that idea was just a fantasy, a ghost to keep me waking up and actually getting out of my bed, or if it could actually come true. But I just held onto that idea because it was all I had."

"I just don't want to be that broken person," she writes. "And I’m not anymore. I am a walking testament to anyone out there that with honesty and self-love, you can feel whole again."

"No matter what you have been through, even if things feel unfair and hurt your soul, it does not have to define who you are," she continues. "You can be the person you want to be today."

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"I know giant pieces of my heart have been held captive in the past. But not anymore. And what's left is fucking pure gold and no one can touch that."

You can read the full letter here.



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