Anita ‘Lady A’ White has finally responded to Lady A, the band, following their lawsuit over their trademark of the name the two acts now share.
“I think they always knew what they were gonna do,” the singer told Vulture on July 9 after news broke that she was being sued by band.
Just last month, the band–formerly known as Lady Antebellum–announced they were changing their name, which is a historical reference to the pre-Civil War South, in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. But things quickly took a turn for the worse when a simple name change turned into a lawsuit against another performer named Lady A, who had been performing under the name since 1987.
“The first contract they sent had no substance,” the singer revealed to Vulture when speaking on her early negotiations with the band. “It said that we would coexist and that they would use their best efforts to assist me on social media platforms — Amazon, iTunes, all that. But what does that mean? I had suggested on the Zoom call that they go by the Band Lady A, or Lady A the Band, and I could be Lady A the Artist, but they didn’t want to do that.”
According to the lawsuit, White eventually requested that the band pay her for use of the name, which is when negotiations swiftly broke down between both parties.
“I was quiet for two weeks because I was trying to believe that it was going to be okay and that they would realize that it would be easier to just change their name, or pay me for my name,” White continued. “Five million dollars is nothing, and I’m actually worth more than that, regardless of what they think. But here we go again with another white person trying to take something from a Black person, even though they say they’re trying to help. If you want to be an advocate or an ally, you help those who you’re oppressing. And that might require you to give up something because I am not going to be erased.”
Many fans have been quick to point out the irony in this whole situation, with the band formerly known as Lady Antebellum changing their name to honor Black Lives Matter…only to sue a Black woman for the use of their new name. Unfortunately for the country trio, Lady A is staying strong in the fight for her artistic persona.
“You don’t get to just come and take because you have that privilege,” White said. “We don’t have that luxury or that privilege, so we need somebody to help us and lift us up.”