Tips for Naming Your Band

The best way to come up with a name is to let your band's music and style evolve. Here are some tips for naming your band:

  1. Finding a name should be the least of your worries. Remember that the goal of your band should be to have fun, write good music, and to play well together. Yes, you can play live with a "temporary name." I've known some bands that changed their name on every gig because they couldn't settle.
  2. You don't have to name your band directly after the type of music you play, but the name shouldn't work against your style either. To illustrate this point, go to billboard.com and look at the new releases list . Pay attention to the names you don't know and try to imagine what style of music it is.
  3. Try brainstorming -- have each bandmember write down five words that describe the feeling, mood, or style of your music. You might find that two of these words joined together make a perfect name. Or at the very least, the list of words gets you thinking of new ideas.
  4. Narrow your list of names and ask friends and family that have heard your band to look them over.
  5. Use online band name generators. BandNameMaker.com is particularly useful because it lets you type in a word to use in the random generation process.
  6. Could any of your song titles be converted to your band name?
  7. Don't stress if the name you chose isn't sticking or if you change your mind. Many famous bands changed their names multiple times after they began playing live.

What type of names should new bands avoid?

Because a name might work well for one particular band and not another makes it difficult to define a general rule. However, here is some advice on what to avoid when naming your band.

  1. Avoid band names that are the same or similar as an existing band (do your research on the web)
  2. Avoid excessively long names. Although there are professional bands with long names, I personally find them annoying. Example: …And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead
  3. Avoid names of other famous artists' songs, movies, etc . It's great to be proud of your influences but I've never been a fan of naming a creative work after someone else's creative work
  4. Avoid excessively clever names (word play)
  5. Avoid names that are names of other products. Do your research on the web. You may even want to see if the domain name is available.
  6. Avoid excessively "cute" names unless you play "cute" music
  7. Avoid words that are difficult to spell. Assuming one of the goals of your band is to "get famous," you'll need to use basic marketing skills along with everything else that goes with being a good band. Words that are difficult to spell will make it harder for your fans to find you on the web.

I hope that helps. If you have any other band-naming tips, please contact us.