On Thursday (June 11), Lady Antebellum announced that the’ve officially shortened their name to Lady A in response to the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement.
In a lengthy note to fans on social media, the superstar country trio — who first broke through in the late 2000s with hits like “Love Don’t Live Here,” “I Run To You” and “Need You Now” — explained the reasoning behind the change.
“As a band, we have strived for our music to be a refuge…inclusive to all,” they began. “We’ve watched and listened more than ever these past 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 everyday. Now, blindspots we didn’t even know existed have been revealed.”
The trio continued: “After much personal reflection, band discussion, prayer and many honest conversations with some of our closest Black friends and colleagues, 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.”
Band mates Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood went on to explain the origins of their decision to use “Antebellum” — which references the pre-Civil War era in the American South — in their moniker. “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…which includes slavery.
“We are deeply sorry for the hurt this has caused and for anyone who has felt unsafe, unseen or unvalued,” they continued. “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.”
Finally, Lady A concluded their post on a note of reflection and accountability, writing, “We understand that many of you may ask the question ‘Why have you not made this change until now?’ The answer is that we can make no excuse for our lateness to this realization. What we can do is acknowledge it, turn from it and take action.”
Check out Lady A’s full statement regarding their timely name change below.