73 Awesome Band Names That Are Up For Grabs

Naming your new band or solo music venture is not a task to take lightly.

The ideal band name needs to meet several criteria. It needs to be original, memorable, concise, align with your image and on top of all that sound unlike every other band and stage name in existence so as not to be confused. And if you’re not sure what your musical niche is, bonus points if it doesn’t allude to a specific genre and allows you to grow into it.

First and foremost, however, it needs to be completely original: a feat not easily accomplished without straying into abstract territory in the year 2016 when anybody can stake their claim on a name by purchasing a domain, locking down a Facebook URL, Twitter, Soundcloud, etc. Every band or artist with a digital presence from your twelve-year-old nephew’s abandoned Ska venture to Deadmau5 is cataloged on the internet.

Luckily, reported data alchemist Glenn McDonald developed this handy band name checker based off the Echo Nest data platform, which scours over ten million web pages per day indexing artists. If you’re like I was last year, spending a little time with this web app will likely reveal how unoriginal the majority your name ideas are and plunge you into despair.

Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 1.50.58 PM

Before settling on Kytoon, I toyed with a lot of different banners to peg on my latest artistic undertaking. Here’s a small excerpt of names, many of which I actually considered using, drawn from my vast list of documented name-ideas. Some of them get pretty punk rock.

  1. Picking Up Videotapes
  2. Attorney of Love
  3. Saturn’s Venus
  4. Tax Evasion (edgy right?)
  5. Trouble For the Establishment
  6. Zebra Insurance
  7. Gillette Fusion (okay, definitely some trademark issues there. But doesn’t it sound nice?)
  8. Abandoned Malls

    Can’t deny the bittersweet undertones.
  9. Lateral Move
  10. It Wasn’t Meant to End Like This
  11. Churro
  12. Naked Foam Party
  13. Pant-Purchasing Venue (a place to buy pants)
  14. Biff and the Ghost Man
  15. Metallica 2 (probably not okay but if you’re willing to roll the dice people will talk about it)
  16. Muff Patrol
  17. The Dan Aykroyd Experience (can piggyback off buzz about Dan Aykroyd)
  18. Melon Farmer
  19. Secretly Pretentious
  20. The Fly of Despair
  21. Tolerable
  22. Somewhat Decent
  23. Things I’d Rather Not Say
  24. Colonoscopy Accident
  25. Ragtime Delta
  26. %*@! That Guy and his Cardigan (I actually don’t mind cardigans, but it feels good to take a stand)
  27. The Baby Geniuses (TriStar abandoned the original trademark but there may be some grey area)
  28. The IRS (like the Postal Service but despicable)
  29. Truth Syrup
  30. Just Hold Still For a Second
  31. Several Floppy Disks

    There are few things cooler than large quantities of an obsolete data format.
  32. Elbow Grease
  33. Occupational Adjustment Bureau (no idea what this means)
  34. Ebb & Go
  35. Vague Entity
  36. Perilous Flight
  37. Cómo Se Dice
  38. Chance Time (I came extremely close to sealing the deal with this Mario Party reference)
  39. Sad Carnival

    Feels every day.
  40. Moral Fiber
  41. Macrofuss
  42. Fun Riot
  43. Hypothetical Jukebox
  44. Suburban Fjord
  45. Glacier Surfing
  46. Cognatic
  47. Continental Slope
  48. Chancewise (might be confused with the rapper)
  49. Herd of Clouds
  50. Interstellar Dweller
  51. Ganymede Station
  52. Bisonfingers
  53. Got Item (Mario Party reference no. 853929765)
  54. Cloud Bank
  55. Paper Atlas
  56. Jugular Evisceration (I’ll never be hardcore enough to do this name justice)
  57. It’s Magic
  58. Balloon Travel

    God, I love balloons.
  59. Astrometry
  60. Coprime
  61. Balloon Season (second favorite candidate out of my many balloon-themed names)
  62. Pneumatic Fantastic
  63. Stewie Magooie’s Bar and Grill (“What’s your band name?”)
  64. Not A Doctor
  65. Shufflecuff
  66. We Like to Have Fun
  67. Word Wizard (can’t believe this isn’t taken yet)
  68. Maritime Pilot
  69. Ticklemonster (comes with creepy overtones depending on regardless of your genre)
  70. I Pose for Stock Photos
  71. Mackerel Surplus
  72. Polyamorous Roboticist
  73. Catch as Catch Can
  74. Jessica Pancake

Some names I’ve excluded from this list include those that include excessive profanity and others I feel are too good to give up to the public yet. As far as I’m concerned, all of these names are up for grabs and I encourage aspiring musicians to use any that strike their fancy on the condition that I be informed of their use so I can show my support.

By the way–before making any decisions, be sure to check the US Patent and Trademark Database to be certain you won’t infringe on any existing trademarks. You don’t want to spend months or years developing a reputation under a certain banner only to receive a cease and desist letter from the trademark owner.

If you want my future musings sent straight to your inbox, sign up for my mailing list! It’s easy, informative and gluten-free!


5 Things Not To Do When Coping With Prolonged Loneliness

Moving somewhere completely new where no one knows your name can be an exciting or thoroughly terrifying experience depending on your circumstances. For a prospective college student, it’s probably a bit of both. For some others, maybe more terrifying than anything else.

…However, since I only have personal experiences to draw from, I’m gonna focus on the voluntarily-moving-to-college angle here.

I’ve had two “fresh starts” since high school. The first was my freshman year at Mizzou in 2013. Despite being only a few hours away from my hometown of Kansas City, nobody I knew enrolled there and I was in fact granted the clean slate I wanted. I fantasized that upon arrival I would be reborn anew, grow a mustache, start referring to myself in the third person as “B.B. Mush” and take the social scene by storm from there. Only one of those things later actually happened, and I instead spent the first ten weeks in staggering isolation unsuccessfully trying to orient myself to my new surroundings. It took me my entire first semester to realize there were people coping with the exact same problems living less than ten feet away.

Although I eventually made some great friends that year, the time I spent alone forced me to evaluate what I wanted from college and I decided to transfer to MTSU as a sophomore to enroll in the Recording Industry program. And once again, my slate was wiped clean.

Unfortunately, the second time around, living off-campus while attending a commuter school slowed my acclimation substantially. The first year, I spent a sickening amount of time closed off in my room writing angsty songs about dying alone and, whenever I left the house, desperately trying to find a social niche. For this post, I briefly considered advising on what to do when feeling isolated in an unfamiliar place, but, given my experience, I feel I’m probably a stronger authority on what not to do. First off,

1. Trying to hide it.

By this I don’t mean go advertising your social ineptitude on social media or unloading on every person you meet. Leading with “I have no friends!” before even learning a person’s name can make people uncomfortable for obvious reasons.

“You’re the first living person I’ve touched in nine months. Please, let this last!”

However, you may or may not be surprised to find how many others around you are dealing with a similar struggle. Even people you perceive as well-adjusted very well may be emotionally crippled jelly bags with robust poker faces just like you. We’re talking about a universal human emotion–everyone has experienced it to some degree. On top of that, pretending to be a social butterfly is silly and the facade usually makes you look like a deuce. Most people can see through it, and among the ones that can’t, zero of them give a @!%& about your blossoming social life. This has a lot to do with my second point:

2. Pretending to be someone you’re not.

“Being yourself” isn’t a novel idea, and you’ve heard it before, but it’s really worth taking to heart at times when under emotional duress. In the midst of complete social desolation, it’s easy to get caught up trying to figure out what you’re doing “wrong” and start trying to accommodate your personality to whoever you’re around. I’ve found myself doing this consciously and subconsciously in the past–trying to be the type of person I think someone wants me to be, working their ego by agreeing with everything they say, feigning interest in things I feel differently about or acting a certain way to fit in with a group of people who should have nothing to do with me. And if you feel the need to do these things constantly around friends, can you really call them that?

*forced laughter*

Of course, there are formal situations that call for this kind of etiquette, but you’ve gotta know how to turn it off. Unless you’re Frank Abagnale, being disingenuous all the time isn’t going to get you anywhere if you’re doing it for social validation. Inevitably it will make you feel even more alone.

3. Using long-distance relationships as a crutch.

This includes all kinds of relationships, romantic or otherwise. Talking to family or friends from out of town can be a great resource when your chips are down, but relying on it too much can seriously stunt you from making inroads towards improving your situation mentally and literally. And if you’re maintaining a long-distance romantic relationship, be particularly wary that you’re not compromising your own growth as a fledgling human for it. Speaking from personal experience, you may not even realize you’re doing it.

With the ubiquity of Skype and smartphones it’s easier than ever to fall into this safety net time and time again. If video-chatting with memaw is always your first line of defense against the creeping loneliness, it might be best to cut yourself off. I’m sure she’ll understand. And if she doesn’t, screw her. She blew your inheritance on a villa in Cabo.

I hope the stingrays get you.

4. Dwelling on the past.

Nostalgia is a natural psychological response to loneliness, but many of us tend to get stuck reminiscing instead of making progress. Constantly fixating on how much better things used to be is 100% counter-productive and most likely not even true. Writing for the New York Times, Historian Stephanie Coontz warns that “nostalgia can distort our understanding of the world in dangerous ways, making us needlessly negative about our current situation.”

There’s nothing wrong with celebrating the good things in our past. But memories, like witnesses, do not always tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. We need to cross-examine them, recognizing and accepting the inconsistencies and gaps in those that make us proud and happy as well as those that cause us pain. – Stephanie Coontz

It’s important to place your memories in context, the good and the bad. Learn from them or let them inspire you to create new ones. You just can’t let them bog you down.

5. Lurking on social media.

I saved this one for last because I honestly believe it’s the worst thing I do. I used to spend a clinically insane amount of time following the goings-on of everyone I know/used to know/don’t know on Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram and such in a sort of daily masochistic ritual. I knew whatever I would find would make me feel bad, angry, annoyed or insecure, and yet, I continued to do it over and over again. It’s addictive. Why? When we need a mental break, our brains crave social interaction.

Amid hours of scrolling through newsfeeds, perusing snapchat stories and photo albums, I spent about 1% of my time actually keeping up with friends and the other 99% trolling for something to put me in a bad mood. It’s a vicious cycle and it took a while for me to realize how truly poisonous I had let it become. My iPhone became a metaphorical ton of bricks for me to lug around day after day.

*actual weight: 3.95 ounces

Realize that many people (perhaps yourself included) use Facebook and other social media platforms as tools for self-aggrandizement. We commonly use these mediums to tailor false images of ourselves, cherry-picking sparse shareable moments or boasting achievements and uploading pictures out of context in a way that compliments how we want to be perceived. For example, a night out drinking and partying may look like a legendary rohypnol-induced Vegas debacle in ten-second increments, but behind the veil it’s just a sausage party of five playing beer pong in a guy-named-Topher’s stepdad’s dank basement.

It’s a phenomenon that looks a lot like this.

The verdict? We’re all a bunch of liars behind the keyboard. Comparing yourself to your friends online is a slippery slope. I haven’t completely cut myself off from social media, but frequent reality checks are in order if I’m to use it without succumbing to it.

That’s all I’ve got for now. I’ll leave you with this one last piece of advice for combating loneliness: look inwards for validation, rather than to others for their approval. If you can learn to live without getting the OK from friends and family, not only will you grow tremendously as a person, but you may even begin to enjoy time spent alone.

If you want my future musings sent straight to your inbox, sign up for my mailing list! It’s easy, informative and gluten-free!

Social Responsibility: Why You’re Not Allowed to be Wrong

A few days ago, while teaching a crowded business class of 90+ college students, my professor informed the room of his belief that climate change is debatable.

Obviously, everybody is entitled to their opinions. Some people believe in ghosts. My friend Adam believes only pooping once a week isn’t cause for alarm. A woman I used to work with believes Kanye West is a shape-shifting reptile bent on undermining our informed democracy. And that’s all fine.

iguana-1392142You’re fooling nobody, Kanye.

However, if your beliefs and actions have influence over others, you have a civic duty to inform yourself and be as unbiased as possible before chiming in with your two cents. Last year, the spread of misinformation based on gossip and gut-feelings led to the largest measles outbreak since the disease was declared eliminated in 2000. Sensationalism and distortion of science in the media certainly didn’t help. Meanwhile, 20% of adults in a recent poll continue to believe Obama was not born in the U.S. and successful rappers are proclaiming the earth is flat.

Climate change is not a political, debatable issue; it’s a scientific fact. The scientific consensus agreed years ago that evidence of the warming of the earth is unequivocal and that it’s “extremely likely” humans are responsibleMy professor is over 60 years old and has been teaching for 30. He’s a solid teacher by my definition and seems like an overall stand-up guy. As far as I’m concerned he can believe he’s a talking anthropomorphic walrus and I’d have no qualmsBut, when he intersperses his lecture to a room full of impressionable minds with popular misguided beliefs, he’s causing damage and promoting the spread of scientific illiteracy. Several students around me nodded in agreement that the warming of the earth may, in fact, be a hoax, their suspicions affirmed by a reputable educator.

global-warming-3-1311759Using the world as an industrial ashtray for over a century will yield zero consequences.

Neil deGrasse Tyson put it best a few days ago in his epic slam of rapper B.o.B. and his flat-earth theory on the Nightly Show:

“If you think the world is flat and you have influence over others, as would successful rappers or even presidential candidates, then being wrong becomes being harmful to the health, the wealth and the security of our citizenry.” Tyson then quotes Isaac Newton, urging the significance of standing on the shoulders of previous generations of scientific discovery, shortly before dropping the mic in a savage demonstration of gravity.

As an educator, celebrity, social icon, politician, guild master or president of your local women’s fiction book club, you’re not allowed to be wrong. Being a leader and person of influence on any scale means your words have power. A large number of people listen to you and they believe you. Whether you like it or not, society holds you to a higher standard, and you have a social responsibility to educate yourself ahead of the curve on matters concerning the welfare of others before joining the conversation, or, at the very least, restrain yourself and bite your tongue. Let’s not forget, success isn’t a license to spew whatever bigotries or conspiracies that cross your mind into the public forum; it’s a solemn duty to lead and hopefully inspire others for the betterment of society.

The moment you gain an audience you cease to be a civilian. Like it or not, up there on that podium, you’re Spiderman. Own that (great) power. Don’t shun your responsibility. The world can’t afford you to.