When Lady A announced this summer that they were changing their name from Lady Antebellum to their nickname in response to the Black Lives Matter movement, it ultimately led to a legal battle with blues singer Anita White, known by her longtime stage name Lady A, about owning the name’s trademark.
During an appearance on the Tamron Hall Show, the country trio opens up about the experience, which is ongoing.
“We knew this was going to be difficult, we knew we were going to alienate a lot of fans. We didn’t see some of these other things coming,” explains Charles Kelley. “We’re trying to resolve this issue with Anita and we’re trying to just really be a light out there for everybody and we know it’s going to be tough, it’s a very divisive issue, but it shouldn’t be.”
Dave Haywood notes that the group’s decision came after “many conversations” with people of color and how the band’s original name was disconcerting due to its connection to the Antebellum South during the time of slavery.
Hillary Scott adds that while the group “never saw that coming” in relation to the backlash and legal battle, they maintain the intention behind the name change.
“The heart of our decision still rings true,” she says. “We want our music and our live shows and anything that we’re a part of for everyone to feel welcome and invited.”
By Cillea Houghton
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