The Perfect Band Name… Before Queen it was Smile. Before Green Day it was Sweet Children. Even before Red Hot Chili Peppers, it was Tony Flow & the Miraculously Majestic Masters of Mayhem. They say the “name makes the band.” How does one use songwriting inspiration to create one? For bands like Symphonic Disorder or Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head, perhaps it’s back to the drawing board. According to Digital Music News, 91% of all artists are undiscovered, which can be attributed to the effectiveness of a band’s name. Can it be pronounced? Is it memorable? Can people shout it easily at a concert?
When I was in a garage band back in high school, it seemed like going back to the drawing board was a daily activity. We went through band names like sticks of chewing gum. We used to talk about songwriting inspiration as a band in our lead guitarist’s house. We’d meet in his kitchen where each of us were required to bring something to the table. This often included something to eat with at least one band name suggestion. With Sweet & Sour Chicken from Safeway, Honey Mustard Kettle Chips, and Fiji Water (for the throats) we never had any problem bringing the food. Our bassist was the organized one. He’d bring the actual drawing board, dry erase markers and printed typed agendas for the meeting.
Sample: Agenda – February 3, 2004
- Eat Chips
- Come up with a band name
- Jam/practice music
- Erase Band name because it sucks
- Come up with different band name!
Writer’s Digest has a great article on how to pick character names that would work well for the perfect band name. One of the best was to look up the Latin roots of the name to ensure an unwanted message is not given.
More about the perfect band name
The journey of finding the perfect band name can be just as treacherous and emotional as The Lord of the Rings Trilogy on Blu-Ray (probably already a band name). Sometimes the journey leads us right back to where we started. I often wonder about the success of the band based on its name. We want to hear about your band name. Has it been a journey for your band to find the right name? Why did you come up with the band name that you did?