'We are deeply sorry': Lady Antebellum are changing their name to Lady A because of racist connotations

The country trio have said honest conversations with black friends and colleagues were behind the move

Charles Kelley, Hillary Scott and Dave Haywood of Lady Antebellum have announced they will be changing their band name to Lady A. AP
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Grammy Award-winning country band Lady Antebellum have announced they will change their name, with the trio stating that they will now simply be known as Lady A.

The band explained that they had decided to remove the word "antebellum" because it refers to a period of time in US history that includes slavery.

"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," the band said in an Instagram post.

The trio, consisting of Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood, have been together since 2006 and are best known for their hit song Need You Now.

The group has won seven Grammy Awards, as well as Country Music Awards and Billboard Awards, finding further success with nine number one hits, selling more than 18 million albums and boasting more than four billion digital streams of their music.

The band's members went on to explain the process behind naming the band, but also apologised for the hurtful historical connotations.

"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.

"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 and join us."

To see their full statement, scroll through their post: