Country Group's Name Change Has a Problem

Lady Antebellum is now Lady A, but Lady A already exists
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 12, 2020 4:00 PM CDT
Name Change Doesn't Please the Other Lady A
From left, Dave Haywood, Hillary Scott, and Charles Kelley of Lady Antebellum attend the 2019 CMT Artists of the Year event in Nashville. The group is now Lady A.   (Photo by Al Wagner/Invision/AP, FIle)

Once Lady Antebellum announced it would now be called Lady A, the work of it happened quickly. The country trio's website was rebranded, and Apple Music, Spotify, and social media soon changed to the new name, Rolling Stone reports. But apparently no one checked to see if "Lady A" is taken. Anita White, 61, a blues singer in Seattle, has been using the stage name since the '80s, and she's upset. "This is my life," she says. "Lady A is my brand, I’ve used it for over 20 years, and I’m proud of what I’ve done." A spokesperson for the former Lady Antebellum said the group didn't know about the Seattle singer and will contact her. The issue could go to court as a trademark case.

"It shouldn’t have taken George Floyd to die for them to realize that their name had a slave reference to it," says White. Her day job is with Seattle Public Utilities, and she's released several albums; her next one, Lady A: Live in New Orleans, is due out in July. She's written songs about the killing of Trayvon Martin and other racial injustices, and an upcoming song that references George Floyd's death is called "The Truth Is Loud." At Vulture, meanwhile, Andrea Williams makes the case that if country music truly wants to come to terms with its own racism, it has to look deeper than iffy band names. (More Lady Antebellum stories.)

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