Lady Antebellum’s Trademark Lawsuit Against Black Blues Singer Lady A Isn’t Ending Anytime Soon

Lady A
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In July, roughly one month after changing their name from Lady Antebellum, Grammy-winning country trio ‘Lady A’ levied a firmly worded lawsuit against the original Lady A, a Seattle-based blues singer who’s used the title since 1987. Now, the band is fighting to keep the case in a Nashville court.

Announcing in a formal statement that they’d officially changed their name to remove slavery connotations, the former Lady Antebellum also indicated that they were “deeply sorry for the hurt this has caused and for anyone who has felt unsafe, unseen or unvalued.” Shortly thereafter, however, it came to light that Anita White, a black blues singer, had performed and released music as Lady A for more than three decades.

The two Lady As met and discussed the matter – including a potential compromise – and it seemed for a time that they would resolve the issue outside the courtroom. Nevertheless, the negotiations ultimately fell through – when Lady A demanded a $10 million payment for the name’s use, per Lady Antebellum.  The band specified that they had acquired the Lady A trademark a decade back, and things took a litigious turn. Breaking her silence, Lady A (the longtime blues singer, that is) said she’d been “intimidated” and “bullied” by the band formerly known as Lady Antebellum.

The Seattleite Anita White also elaborated upon her experience (and the overarching courtroom confrontation) in a podcast with Digital Music News, before filing a countersuit in September. And a new joint status report (which DMN obtained), submitted as part of the ongoing legal saga, has shed light upon the status of the Lady A lawsuit.

Beginning by outlining the suit’s discovery parameters (including scope, limitations, and the potential need for protective orders), the document then details a possible timetable for the process as well as the trial itself. Lady A and her legal team are looking to have their lawsuit heard before a court in Seattle, whereas the former Lady Antebellum members wish to see their own suit proceed in Tennessee.

If the Seattle judge allows discovery to commence in Anita White’s suit – Lady Antebellum’s complaint remains on hold because of the transfer request – Lady A expects that the expert discovery portion will conclude by the end of next July. Maintaining that discovery (in the Washington Lady A lawsuit) should wait until their original complaint proceeds, the country group relays that discovery could wrap up by August 30th, 2021.

Lastly, both parties state that the Lady A lawsuit “can be ready for trial” by November of 2021, but Lady Antebellum and its counsel emphasize once more that they believe the Seattle suit should be shelved until the original complaint in Tennessee proceeds. While a date hasn’t yet been set for the latter trial, the Tennessee court “has suggested trial will occur no earlier than early 2022.”

Here’s a closer look at the word ‘antebellum’ and why Lady Antebellum wanted to distance themselves from it.

11 Responses

  1. J.A Shmoe

    My vote is for the Seattle Lady A.

    Even with the trade mark from 10 years ago. They have done nothing to promote or protect said trademark. They are using their clout to try and push over someone with less means.

    Hopefully a lawyer of some stature will help the ORIGINAL Lady A

    The reason for the name change is ridiculous. Get woke, go broke.

  2. Kenneth Higney

    Said it at the beginning of this argument – the band should just change their name altogether and promote the new name. It will be easy for them to bring their fan base along with the name change,. The new name will be a great “story” to get some new attention and, possibly, fans, and they will look much better in the press and to other potential fans. The original “Lady A” – who should be awarded the name in court – can also use the publicity to her benefit. The band could also, in a nice bit, cover a song or two of Lady A and show some respect and give her a helping financial hand. Just change the name already – anything will be helpful and will get this settled. Legal bullying by the band doesn’t help anyone and only serves to keep the band”s current and future fans thinking about how wrong the band is. Show some common sense already.

    • Chuck

      Lady Appropriation should just pick a different name that wasn’t already in use if they really feel the need for a name change.

  3. Mariseda

    When I first heard of Lady Antebellum years ago, I remember thinking “why would you pick a name that suggests we go back to slavery? Who are you trying to relate to?” So, honestly, I always thought it was just a stupid, thoughtless, privileged name – I’m white, by the way.
    Lady A worked hard for her standing and deserves to keep everything she earned WITHOUT nonsense from these thought-limited (insert other words here) bullies. Lady Antebellum needs to get a real new name and show depth. If they really are fans, they will find you.

  4. El Nothavingit

    Wokeness is a disease. One tires of all you dumbasshats.

  5. Melecio Remigio

    Listen to the track: “I run to you”, from Lady A. Listen how they run from prejudice. The group does not embrace racism, they run away from it. Just fix this dispute, in a rational way: God bless this band.


    Lady Antebellum only have one old trade mark in a small area for Lady A, only used once years ago. There is a amazing wellness brand called Lady A in Europe, the real lady who owns this brand owns many trade marks for Lady A in Europe and the continent.
    The band should choose a completely different name as this is ridiculous.

  7. Lissa

    It is clear from this article who the writer is siding with. First, in the country band Lady A’s lawsuit they are not asking for anything but a judge to let them use the name that they legally own. They are still willing to let the Seattle based Lady A to use her name. She is the one that started demanding money. This band has also has used this name since as early as 2011, there is a reason why they trademarked the name back then. Since there is a trademark from almost ten years ago she has no legal standing in this case, in my opinion. The Seattle based singer just wants money for doing nothing.