It’s starting to become pretty clear that Lady Antebellum probably should have had a plan B when they made the sudden decision to change their name to the less-problematic “Lady A.” Because there was already an established Seattle blues singer named Anita White, who goes by Lady A, and they’ve all been fighting over the rights to that letter for three months now. Lady A (Anita) was hurt that country band Lady A never reached out before announcing the name change. After an online meeting about sharing the name, the band decided to sue Lady A for the legal rights to the name. Now Lady A has decided to countersue, claiming the band’s messy fight over the name has cost her money and damaged her reputation.
The band formally known as but is basically still named Lady Antebellum shot themselves in the foot when they decided to officially change their name to Lady A before checking in with Anita White who has used Lady A as her stage name since Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley, and David Haywood were in denim diapers. It’s been one month since Lady A is For Antebellum filed their lawsuit against Anita for the rights to use her name, and according to Billboard, “the two parties are no closer to a solution.” That’s because Anita refuses to back down and she continues to speak out about Lady A is For Antebellum’s shameful pandering and subsequent double cross.
Anita White, The Original “Lady A”, Says Lady Antebellum Are Trying To Make Her Look Like “The Angry Black Woman”
Lady A “will not be erased” by a trio of bougie hillbillies and their high-powered attorneys. Anita White, whose stage name the band Lady A is For Antebellum (red flag #1) tried to snatch up from underneath her nose, has given an interview with Vulture. In it, she says she’s not backing down. Earlier this week we learned that negotiations over who had the right to use Lady A broke down and the band filed a lawsuit against Anita for rights to the name. This came after screenshots from a Zoom meeting between Anita and band members Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley, and David Haywood were posted on Instagram suggesting that they all got together and sang kumbaya or some shit (a Gullah Geechee negro spiritual btw— we give and we give). Well, Anita says it was all bullshit.
About a month ago, the country group Lady Antebellum announced that they were erasing the “ntebellum” in their name because of its association with slavery and would go by Lady A from now on. A quick minute after they announced their name change, Anita White, a blues singer from Seattle, let them know that she’s been using the stage name of Lady A long before they yodeled out their first twangy musical note. Lady A1 (right) and Lady A2(left) got together in a Zoom call where they both made it clear that they’re not going to budge from using the Lady A name and they will hopefully find a way to co-exist. Well, that way will have to be determined through the court system because Lady A2 is suing Lady A1 for the right to trademark the “Lady A” name. So they went from wanting to show that they stand in solidarity with the Black community to suing a Black woman over the use of her name?! Did Lorne Michaels produce this story because this is a long-form Saturday Night Live parody sketch.
Last week Lady Antebellum, a country music group whose music I’ve never ever heard (I exclusively listen to Imagine Dragons [JK JK]) changed their name to Lady A after “many honest conversations” with their Black friends. Because now that everyone finally agrees racism is bad, using the word “antebellum”, which harkens back to the pre-Civil War South and slavery, is a no-go.
But, as we all know, the road to problematic is paved with good intentions. The band was immediately called out for using the same name as Anita White, a Black Seattle blues singer who’s been performing as “Lady A” for over two decades. The real Lady A was annoyed no one reached out to her or bothered to Google the name. A-greed! Now the band, in White Damage Control Level 2.0 (we saw Kristen Bell in this mode yesterday), has shared that they “privately” spoke to Lady A to discuss the name.
Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds’ spiritual wedding band, Lady Antebellum, just made the decision to remove the spiritual confederate flag from their name and have rebranded themselves as Lady A after “having many honest conversations with some of our closest Black friends.” However, according to Rolling Stone, Lady Antebellum’s best Black friends failed to recommend they Google Lady A before changing everything “on social media and distribution platforms including Spotify and Apple Music, and the group’s website,” because it turns out the name was already being used by Anita White, a Black blues singer from Seattle who has been performing and recording under the name Lady A for over 20 years. If this is not an occasion for an Issa Rae “deep, heavy, negro spiritual sigh,” I don’t know what is.