Country music group Lady Antebellum has changed its name to Lady A. On June 11, the band, made up by Hillary Scott, Dave Haywood and Charles Kelle, posted a statement on Twitter about the name change. The change came a few weeks after George Floyd’s death in police custody on May 25 in Minneapolis. Since his death, protests and riots have emerged throughout the United States demonstrating against police brutality and racism.
The band said, “We’ve watched and listened more than ever these last few weeks, and our hearts have been stirred with conviction, our eyes opened wide to the injustices, inequality and biases black women and men have always faced and continue to face every day. Now, blindspots we didn’t even know existed have been revealed.”
The change from Lady Antebellum to Lady A came “after much personal reflection, band discussion, prayer and many honest conversations with some of our closest black friends, and colleagues.” Here is Lady A’s statement:
Lady A Explained the Backstory to ‘Lady Antebellum’ & Apologized for Causing ‘Hurt’
The band explained the backstory behind the name “Lady Antebellum” and why the group is changing it to Lady A.
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… 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 civil war, which includes slavery.
Lady A then apologized, saying, “We are deeply sorry for the hurt this has caused and for anyone who has felt unsafe, unseen or unvalued. 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 a join us.”
The band also posed the question many fans may have: “Why have you not made this change until now?” Lady A answered, “We can make no excuse for our lateness to this realization. What we can do is make acknowledge it, turn from it and take action.”
Lady A Said The Band Has Been ‘Awakened’ & Is Committed to ‘Making the Necessary Changes to Practice Antiracism’
Lady A wrote in the statement:
We feel like we have been awakened but, this is just one step. There are countless more that need to be taken. We want to do better. We are committed to examining our individual and collective impact and making the necessary changes to practice antiracism. We will continue to educate ourselves, have hard conversations and search the parts of our hearts that need pruning— to grow into better humans, better neighbors.
The band also stated that it will be making a donation to the Equal Justice Initiative through Ladyaid.