Lady A, formerly known as Lady Antebellum until last week, have reached out to blues singer Lady A, who cried foul after the country trio shortened its name without realizing that the Seattle artist has released several albums under the name over the last 20 years.
“Today, we connected privately with the artist Lady A. Transparent, honest, and authentic conversations were had,” the group posted on its Instagram late Monday afternoon. “We are excited to share we are moving forward with positive solutions and common ground. The hurt is turning into hope. More to come.” The post includes screen shots of a video chat between the group, Lady A, John Oliver III of Gleanings Community Bible Church and Mississippi blues artist Dexter Allen, who have written and performed with the singer.
Sources say they will both continue forward as Lady A.
Last Thursday (June 11), the band announced via Instagram that it was dropping the name Antebellum from its name after reflecting on the Black Lives Matter movement and in an effort to be more inclusive. “When we set out together almost 14 years ago, we named our band after the southern ‘antebellum’ style home where we took our first photos. As musicians, it reminded us of all the music born in the south that influenced us,” they wrote. “But we are regretful and embarrassed to say that we did not take into account the associations that weigh down this word referring to the period of history before The Civil War, which includes slavery. We are deeply sorry for the hurt this has caused and for anyone who has felt unsafe, unseen or unvalued.”
The next day, the original Lady A, Anita White, said she was blindsided when she heard the news. “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,” White told Rolling Stone last week. “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.”
Billboard reached out to the singer Lady A, and her manager, Kimberly Horton, responded via email, “As you can imagine all of this has been overwhelming,” she wrote. “We had [a] meeting today and we’re looking forward to a beneficial outcome for both parties. We’re making progress.”