Rant: Stop the Singer-Songwriters with Band-Like Stage Names

OK MySpace is plugging this kid named “Young Love.” What the hell kind of stupid name is that? Could you possibly pick a more irritating stage name than “Young Love?” Is it even possible? The only thing that might be worse would be to name yourself “Basket of Puppies of Kittens.”

While we’re on the subject, I’m really really getting sick of all these singer-songwriters who give themselves stage names like they’re bands. It has to be the most annoying, pretentious trend in semi-popular music since the whole mid-90’s “one random word band names” (Sponge, Wax, Filter, Bush). Today we have individuals named Bright Eyes, Aqualung, and Iron & Wine, and more are popping up every day.

A case can be made for artists like Nine Inch Nails and Aphex Twin (ask me about my Aphex Twin story) who present themselves as something larger than their individual selves – for example you don’t see a picture of Trent Reznor on his album covers because it’s not about a man and his songs, it’s about a whole imaginative universe of sound. But if you’re just a bearded guy with an acoustic guitar and you walk up to the mic and say “Hi, I’m Iron and Wine?” No. Sorry. Get real. I love Iron & Wine as much as everyone should, but come on. It’s just goofy and trendy. You’re Sam Beam. It’s a perfectly fine name. No need to puff yourself up by fooling new listeners into thinking you’re a band.

But anything is better than “Young Love.” It just makes my skin crawl. Even more than the impossibly saccharine “Bright Eyes.” And this is coming from a guy who loves a band called The Softlightes.

I’m not saying my position is logically defensible, I’m just saying that this trend irritates me. But then, most trends irritate me.

3 thoughts on “Rant: Stop the Singer-Songwriters with Band-Like Stage Names”

  1. At least there is one example of someone making a change for the better. Bill Callahan is finally releasing albums under his real name, rather than (Smog), which he used for almost 20 years.

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