ANTEBELLUM is a word that was used in the name of the popular country group Lady A – but what does it mean and why did the band change their name?
Lady A is a country trio that has become more and more famous in its 14 years of existence. However, the band was previously known as Lady Antebellum, although the name change was announced only recently. Many were curious to know what the word Antebellum means and why it has caused such controversy.
What does Antebellum mean?
Antebellum is known for its connection to the South of the USA before the Civil War.
The word is often paired with the era and refers to a period in US history from the late 18th century until the beginning of the American Civil War in 1861.
During the Antebellum period, the wealth of the South grew exponentially, mainly due to the slave trade, which had a significant political influence on the government.
During this period, the rise of the anti-slavery movement and the abolitionists caused unrest in the country, with the South strongly advocating slavery because of the way it contributed to the growth of its economy.
However, the band, now known as Lady A, talked about how they chose this word for their band name after they did a photo shoot in historical costumes in Antebellum houses, which spoke of a certain time in history that many would like to forget.
The band published a statement which reads: “As a musician, it reminded us of all the music born in the South that has influenced us
“But we regret and are ashamed to say that we have not taken into account the associations that burden this word in relation to the period before the civil war, including slavery.
We deeply regret the damage this has caused and anyone who has felt insecure, invisible or unvalued. Causing pain was never the intention of our heart, but it does not change the fact that it did exactly that. “
Lady A is the nickname that fans of the band have been using for many years, so they thought this was a more appropriate new name.
The band stated in their statement posted on Twitter: “We have watched and listened more than ever in recent weeks, and our hearts have been moved by conviction, our eyes widened to the injustices, inequalities and prejudices against black women and women. Men have faced up to it every day, always and every day.
“Now blind spots were revealed that we didn’t even know existed.”
Lady A added, “We cannot excuse our lateness in coming to this realization. We can acknowledge it, turn away from it and take action.”
Lady A is not the first music group or label to change its name after the protests against Black Lives Matter.
The British record label One Little Indian Records, which released music by Björk, Sigur Ros and Paul McCartney, changed its name to One Little Independent.
It was founded and is run by punk rock bassist Derek Birkett from the former British punk band Flux of Pink Indians.
He wrote in a statement: “After receiving an eye-opening letter from a Crass fan explaining exactly why the logo and brand name are offensive, as well as the violent history of the terminology, I felt both horrified and grateful to them so that I could understand what needed to be changed. “
He went on to explain that the label had been founded when his friends were inspired by the ‘philosophies of the indigenous peoples of America’, adding: “I was naive enough at the time of founding my label to believe that the name and logo reflected my respect and appreciation for the culture.
“I realize now that both contribute to racism and should have been addressed a long, long time ago.”
Along with his recording, the Grammy Awards and the Republic Records label, which releases music by singer Ariana Grande, have stopped using the word “urban” in their music categories.
Tyler, the creator, a Grammy winner, said of the term in January: “I don’t like this ‘urban’ word – it’s just a politically correct way of saying the N-word. Why can’t we just be.” in pop? “