Yeah, the Band Name Thing


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Those of you who’ve never indulged an urge to rocker-up and join a band cannot possibly know what a trying pain in the ass it can sometimes be to come up with a really great name. Unless the group’s working dynamic is one of a clear leader and side players, you have to account for three to five people’s tastes, which may be compatible musically, but ain’t necessarily compatible in terms of band names. Also, you should know: over 99.99999% of the random phrases that make punters in bars exclaim “hey, that’d be a cool band name” are utter shit. UTTER shit. If that sounds elitist to you, whatever, blow me. (“Whoa, dude, you should totally call your band ‘Blow Me!’” SEE?)

The flipside of this is that there’s a certain type of band-lifer that typically keeps notebook pages full of potential band names for future use, and many of these saw (and are seeing) light of day in Lottery League bands. If I may trouble you with a quick, top-of-my-head annotated list of some of my favorite names from the 2008 Lottery League, there was Rad Bathhouse (deeply odd, plus the cadence is awesome, and that counts for a lot), Good News For People With Credit Problems (what a great use of spam!), Born Raped (refuge in audacity, when done well, kicks ass), Cleveland Public Power (why had nobody done that before?), Hapsburg Lip (super-obscure references are a bonus for the smarties in the audience who catch them, and for a certain kind of band, that works really, really well) and Snuggle Prophet (cadence + WTF wins again). This year’s band names aren’t due in until March 1, but several LL bands have submitted theirs already: Dead Wrestler, Drugs For Everybody, Earplug Party Tonight, Melted Face Constitutional, Milk And Cookies, Milk Thrøat, The Newdicals, and my fave so far, Hut Hut Hike.

My Lottery band, Band #13, still hasn’t settled on a name, and unfortunately, it’s against League rules to just use “Band #13,” which we all like. Here is the entire list of suggestions we’ve thrown in (and out):

Jimmy The Antenna
Shopping Center
Shopping Accident
The Sleepwalker
We Want Them to Set Their Pianos On Fire
We Want Them to Smash Their Pianos
Nice Beaver
Deep Sleeper
To Look, Act, and Feel Just Like Teenager
Tibetan Warrior Helmet
Distraught Parasite
Feel Just Like Teenager
Neuron Empire
Killed In Action Eaten By Robot
8-Bit Princess
I.I. Captain
L.L. Parser
Audio Transmission Guide
Spiritual Transistor
Rapid Transmit Authority
Mirth, Gin, and Satire
There's Always Something To Do (This might not have been an actual band name suggestion, but rather, just like it says on the box, an assertion that there is, in fact, always something to do.)
Polysynthetic Moogbots
Sung O.D.
Boogie Banshee Stardom
I Like Eyelids
I Like Eyelids And I Like I Like Eyelids
One Solitary Electron
The Avatar Twilights
Twenty Bucks Just Like In Town
Forklift Family Dancers
Filament Party
Assless Chaps

Our name could be one of those, or it could be none of those. You may not have any of the ones we don't use. Nyah. Whatever we choose, we'll choose by March 1st, for if we don’t the League’s organizing body will name us. We really really really don’t want that. Unconfirmed rumor has it that’s how 2008’s “Old Dildo” and “Fuck Is The New Black” got their names. (It'd be easy enough to check if the rumor was true, but I'd prefer not to find out it wasn't, so I'm not going to check. That's 21st Century journalism, baby. Hey, wait a second - "21st Century Journalism Baby" would make a cool band name!)

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