Yesterday (June 11), country trio Lady Antebellum announced they’re changing their name to Lady A, citing the loaded history of the word “Antebellum” and apologizing for failing to “take into account the associations that weigh down this word referring to the period of history before the Civil War, which includes slavery.” The Seattle-based blues singer Anita White, who’s recorded and released music under the name Lady A for more than two decades, has now discussed the country band in a new interview with Rolling Stone.
According to White, who is a Black woman, the Nashville band did not contact her regarding the use of the name. “This is my life. Lady A is my brand, I’ve used it for over 20 years, and I’m proud of what I’ve done,” she said in the interview. “This is too much right now. They’re using the name because of a Black Lives Matter incident that, for them, is just a moment in time. If it mattered, it would have mattered to them before. It shouldn’t have taken George Floyd to die for them to realize that their name had a slave reference to it.... I don’t know if [the new Lady A] are going to give me a cease-and-desist. I don’t know how they’d react. But I’m not about to stop using my name.”
A representative for Lady Antebellum told Rolling Stone the band was not aware of White’s use of the name and plans to reach out to her. The band has since shared a screenshot of a private Zoom conversation they had with the singer. “We are excited to share we are moving forward with positive solutions and common ground.”
Originally Appeared on Pitchfork