Class members Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley and David Haywood have decided to sue after “White’s attempt to assert alleged trademark rights in a mark that the plaintiffs have owned for more than a decade”, says the trial . The group is not seeking monetary damages, the trial said.
The group has used the name of Lady A, as well as their original name, Lady Antebellum, since 2006-2007, according to the trial. They officially removed Antebellum from their name on June 11 amid ongoing protests against racial injustice.
“Lady A” became an official mark of the group in 2011 after nobody filed an opposition against the name, according to the lawsuit. “Prior to 2020, White did not in any way contest the open, obvious and widespread use by applicants nationally and internationally of the Lady A brand as a source indicator,” said the lawsuit.
The lawsuit notes that White has identified herself as Lady A since 2010 and that she also presents her music on a Spotify artist page. But the suit pointed out that White’s artist page at the time of court filing had 166 monthly listeners, compared to more than 7 million.
White’s website says that she performs mainly in the Pacific Northwest, but has also performed internationally. She told Rolling Stone that she has been performing under the stage name Lady A for over. His last CD should be released on July 18.
On June 15, White posted a photo of a Zoom call between herself and the group on her Instagram page, saying that “transparent, honest, and authentic conversations had taken place.”
“We are delighted to share that we are moving forward with positive solutions and common ground,” said White in his article. “The injury turns into hope. More soon. ”
During the call, the musicians discussed “co-writing and joint recording of a new song,” the trial said.
The following day, White told Newsday that she had received a draft agreement from the group’s lawyers and that she was “not satisfied with [it]. »
“Their camp is trying to wipe me out and I will say more tomorrow,” she told Newsday. “Trust is important and I don’t trust them anymore. ”
White did not immediately respond to CBS News’ request for comment.
White had previously told CBS News that following Zoom’s call with the group, she had forgiven him for his “faux pas”. She also congratulated the group for defending the Black Lives Matter movement.
“I applaud them for that, and I am ready to help in any way possible and they want to help in any way possible.” So we are going to work together, ”she said. “This is where the white allies have to start listening to blacks, natives, people of color. We must make sure that you listen so that we can change this tale of racism in this world. ”
The group said in a statement that when they realized that White had already played as Lady A, they had “sincere discussions with her about how we can all get together and do something special and beautiful from that moment. ”
Their publicist, Tyne Parrish, told CBS News at the time that the artists agreed that they could both continue to use Lady A.
“We never even envisioned that she shouldn’t be able to use Lady A’s name as well, and we never will – today’s action doesn’t change that. … We felt that we had come together for a reason and we saw it as living the call that led us to make this change in the first place, “said the group in the trial.
“We are disappointed that we cannot work with Anita to this end,” added the suit. “We are still determined to educate ourselves, to educate our children and to do our part to fight for the racial justice so desperately needed in our country and in the world. … We hope Anita and the counselors she listens to now will change their approach. We can do much more together than in this dispute. ”
Sophie Lewis contributed to this report.