Five Things You Don't Know About Ke$ha

01/27/2010 at 11:15 AM EST

Five Things You Don't Know About Ke$ha
Ke$ha
Duffy-Marie Arnoult/WireImage
Turn on the radio and you're bound to hear Ke$ha (pronounced Kesha, not Keisha or Casha!) belting out the lyrics to her club anthem "Tik Tok," the No. 1 pop song right now. Sound like your typical 22-year-old party girl? Maybe. But here are a few things about her that may surprise you:

1. Nerd Alert!: Sure, she brags about brushing her teeth with Jack Daniels and hooking up with boys who look like Mick Jagger, but the pop star has an intellectual side too. Before scoring a record deal, "I was going to go to Barnard to be a psychologist," she says. Currently reading A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson ("It's so good," she gushes), Ke$ha adds that as a high school student, she used to crash college classes for fun. "I'd drive down to Belmont [University] and sit in on a cold war history class," she says with a laugh. "I love learning."

2. She Ain't Afraid of No Ghosts: Terrified is more like it. "I just recently moved because [my house] was haunted," she says. In fact, her fear helped inspire the line, "Woke up in the morning feeling like P. Diddy," in "Tik Tok." "I'd always try to convince my friends to spend the night, 'cause I wouldn't get haunted on if they were there," she says. "I woke up one morning, surrounded by all my girlfriends. I woke up feeling like P. Diddy!"

3. Homeward Bound: She may look like a California girl, but make no mistake: Ke$ha is proud of her Nashville roots – so much so that she recently decided to move home. "I really love L.A., [but] it's like a weekend all the time there," she says. "I want to go back home, hang out with the fam – I have a 10-year-old brother who thinks I'm cool so I like hanging out with him – and learn how to play the drums.



4. All the Single Ladies: Guys, listen up: the blonde beauty is single and looking. When asked about her love life, she is emphatic: "It's a disaster. It really takes a strong guy to have a successful girlfriend who's as mouthy as I am. I've yet to find someone who can handle the sass," she says. "I just want somebody who's really cool – a really cool musician with a big beard."

5. Animal Instincts: "I'm super into being an animal – that's why I named my album Animal," she says, adding that one day she hopes to have parrots named Wayne and Garth. "I go [scuba] diving, mountain biking, and camping to see animals. I [even] went to the Amazon to try to see jaguars," she says. "I'm obsessed with watching animal documentaries, [too]. It's the only TV you'll ever catch me watching." She corrects herself: "Or maybe Seinfeld."

Watch the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards on Jan. 31 at 8 p.m. ET/PT, live on CBS – and catch up on all the news and style from the show on PEOPLE.com!

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