Artist News

Lady Antebellum change name due to association with slave trade

By | Published on Friday 12 June 2020

Lady A

Lady Antebellum have announced that they are changing their name to Lady A, due to their former moniker’s association with slavery.

The antebellum era in the US was a period of rapid economic growth in the southern states during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, aided in large part by a reliance on slavery. While the band say that they were not named in direct reference to this period of US history, they add that they are now “regretful and embarrassed” that they chose the word nonetheless.

“After much personal reflection, band discussion, prayer and many honest conversations with some of our closest black friends and colleagues”, say the band in a statement, “we have decided to drop the word ‘antebellum’ from our name and move forward as Lady A, the nickname our fans gave us almost from the start”.⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣

“When we set out together almost fourteen years ago, we named our band after the southern ‘antebellum’ style home where we took our first photos”, they explain. “As musicians, it reminded us of all the music born in the south that influenced us – southern rock, blues, R&B, gospel and of course country. 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 [American] 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”, they go on. “Causing pain was never our hearts’ intention, but it doesn’t change the fact that indeed, it did just that. So today, we speak up and make a change. We hope you will dig in and join us”.⁣⁣⁣

⁣The band have also committed to make a charitable donation to the Equal Justice Initiative through their own charitable organisation LadyAID.