Anita ‘Lady A’ White: ‘Sometimes all black people have is our name’

Blues singer Anita White, known professionally as Lady A, is refusing to give up her name without a fight.

The band formerly known as Lady Antebellum recently announced plans to adopt the moniker, acknowledging that the word ‘Antebellum’ has close ties with slavery, leading to objection from White, who has performed as Lady A for years.

While the parties initially appeared to reach a mutual agreement, things turned nasty last week when bandmates Charles Kelley, Dave Haywood, and Hillary Scott accused White of trying to cash in on the situation by demanding $10 million (£8 million) to stop performing as Lady A.

Speaking with ABC News Prime, White insisted she has, “built this name for decades before they were born, and I’ve been building it,” as she compared the “grind” of independent musicians to the struggles Black, Indigenous people of colour (BIPOC) face.

“Sometimes all we have is our name,” she stated. “We don’t want to have that taken from us. Our culture gets taken, our music gets taken. This is more important for those that come behind me.”

The musician went on to say she felt “disregarded” and ignored when she asked the country act’s lawyers what exactly it meant to co-exist on three separate occasions, insisting: “I’ve put out five CDs under Lady A. They have not put one CD under Lady A. That’s their nickname. This is my professional name.”

Despite admitting she was initially excited about the prospect of working with the Need You Now trio, White has concluded their intentions were insincere and conceded she wasn’t willing to check the box to be the “token person so that you look woke”.

July 17, 2020
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