Hey … I’m in a band, and our first show is in may, but we still need a name we’ve got a few ideas. There’s”Ethereal Dissonance” but our drummer doesn’t like the name then another one is “S.T.D.’ because there’s 3 members…and that’s our initials. What one would you say we should go with?
Need A Band Name
Dear Need A Band Name,
Ah, well I wouldn’t call your band S.T.D. because no one wants to buy a T-shirt with that on it! No, but seriously picking a band name is fucking hard. I have been in a band for 15 years that picked its name because we had a show and just needed to have something. So we made a list and then, bam, picked the one that made our stomachs churn the least. It’s funny we even agreed that we would change it if we thought of something better. One thing that’s true for all bands is that they love to make half decisions you know ones that can be changed at any time. It’s good so that way no one really has to make a real decision. Actually, its not good, that’s bad but well you get the idea…Anyway, how do you pick a good band name? Well I like to run it through the patented 4 step naming machine. Just make sure your name fits in here and your probably good to go. (notice I said probably!)
Step one, its good to start by not picking a real offensive one. I mean if it’s something that is going to have to be edited all the time on flyers and in other sorts of promotion then let’s just say its going to make your life a living hell. So don’t pick something like Assfuckers Zombie Death Fuck. I mean it may seem funny but it probably won’t get popular.
The second variable in the old name hunt is whether or not your name is Internet survivable. We are on ASKTHEDUDE.NET because someone owns the dot com. It’s not a big deal, but you don’t want to name yourself something that will get lost amongst internet word searches. For example The Cars might have had a hard time starting a band in 2008. Plus you want to have an easy to find facebook, myspace, and whatever the hell else website you have to have (seems like a band needs to have a million faces these days).You want an original name that you can have control of in both the virtual and real world.
Step three, and this one is really hard. Its good when you find a name that when you hear it, you only think of the band. Some friends of mine had a band called Frodus. No one (or nearly no one knew the band name came from an alien on the monkey’s shows) when they named their band frodus well that’s it. I mean what’s a frodus its nothing the only thing you really think of is the band .
Step four, keep in mind your band has to shred. I mean Slayer wasn’t the best band name in metal till Slayer kicked ass. And Metallica didn’t really mean anything till it was the band that put out some sick ass metal records. So make sure that name fits with your band and you can hold it down. Slayer would not have been good if they sounded like Limp Bizkit, even if they were still named Slayer. It’s the band that makes a name, not the opposite.
If you follow the top 4 steps then you will be headed on the right track to finding a good band name that will stick with you and speak the identity of your band. However If you noticed I said probably a few times above. That’s cause in the music biz well anything goes. There are bands that have names that break all the above rules and find success to no end! And just maybe one of those crazy band names could be just crazy enough to blow your band up. But the truth is not probably! So go with the steps above its just a bit safer…oh and if anyone out there calls their band Assfuckers Zombie Death Fuck send me a T-shirt!