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Monday, June 22, 2009

Wait a Second -- Is That Concert Poster Celebrating the Good Ol' Days Before the Emancipation Proclamation?

Posted By on Mon, Jun 22, 2009 at 7:30 AM

What's in a name? That depends upon whether your relatives owned or were owned, right? - JOE ESKENAZI
  • Joe Eskenazi
  • What's in a name? That depends upon whether your relatives owned or were owned, right?
We'll admit it. We're not huge country music fans, so the massive Kenny Chesney poster hanging off AT&T Park didn't really draw our attention. What did get us doing a double-take was the name of what appears to be the tertiary opening act: Lady Antebellum.

Doing a little rudimentary Web sleuthing, we were surprised to find out that Lady Antebellum -- unlike Lady Gaga or Lady Miss Kier -- is not so much a lady as a lady and two gentlemen (and it appears the gents are wearing more makeup than the lady). 

We were also surprised that there's apparently no solid reason for the group having a name that appears to celebrate the good ol' days before the Civil War (antebellum, in Latin, means "before the war" and is a less unwieldy term than "pre-Civil War").

According to the group's bio, "their old-school influences led them to choose an

old-time moniker, inspired by a just-for-fun photo shoot in front of an

Antebellum-style home: Lady Antebellum. 'There's not anything too

terribly meaningful behind it,'" says bandmember Dave Charles.

Really? So if the group had been hanging around in front of a Tudor home they'd be Lady Tudor? Or if they'd met at a Bernard Maybeck bungalow they'd be Lady Craftsman? Or if they met at my old apartment they'd be Lady Shithole?

Glancing at the lyrics to Lady Antebellum's songs, it seems they're hardly celebrating the glory of the land of cotton -- old times there are not forgotten. It seems they specialize in tender love ballads. So why choose an "old-school moniker" that hearkens to the days when men owned each other? You know, a lot of people don't exactly have positive associations with that time.

If a European group sported the title Lady Anschluss -- it would seem odd, no?

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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