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When to change Band Name?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by gard0300, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. gard0300


    Jan 10, 2011
    Vandalia, Ohio
    Got a question. In your opinion, at what point do you change your band name? We have had the same name since 2009. We have always had a good name with bar owners.
    In the last 2 years we have had 2 lineup changes. Mainly singers and guitarists. I'm pretty sure we are going to have to let our singer go. He's just not performing up to par and not rehearsing on regular basis anymore.
    My dilemma is many of our fans come out and support us regardless of singer and guitarist changes. Bar owners usually book this band more often and at a higher rate of pay than my other bands. This band is my baby and I hate to let the name go, but at some point I think the constant lineup changes are hurting our image.
    Another bad thing is we own merchandise, business cards and the website name. It would be a big ordeal for us. But I want to be proactive as well.
    We are mainly a cover band with some originals mixed in. So I'm really not worried about this from potential music career point of view. But, there is a since of pride either way.
  2. Why change the name ? Unless of course the name of the band is someones name or a derivative thereof.

    Line up changes historically don't indicate a name change.
    examples include Lynyrd Skynyrd,Molly Hatchet, the WHO, etc...
  3. don't. as an established band with printed merchandise and promotion material it is very time and money consuming to change the name. unless you are obligued to do so you shouldn't do it.
    fans will get confused, you will lose audience. venues will get confused too. from what you said i see absolutely no point in changing the name.
    line up changes don't have anything to do with the name. there are bands with 0 original members still going by the same name. why bother?
  4. dalkowski

    dalkowski Supporting Member

    May 20, 2009
    Massachusetts USofA
    Three words: The Beach Boys

    And I'm only half-joking. From what you describe, your band name has become your BRAND and that's a very good thing, particularly for a primarily covers band.

    You've described a brand essence that marketers dream of: Name recognition, reliable, lucrative and friendly distribution channels, and a consumer base that seems to love your product/service (which sounds like you deliver with consistent quality). All this good stuff in the face of what you describe as "constant lineup changes."

    Brother, I wouldn't change a thing. Ride that horse as long you can.
  5. LPStephens


    May 16, 2010
    I'm in a similiar situation with one of my projects where the singer just wasn't working out and we finally let him go. Unfortunately, we waited too long as most venues weren't calling us back. Once we find a new front person, a name change for us makes sense because we really don't have much of anything to loose. Trying to rebuild our reputation and image vs. starting fresh and leaving as much baggage behind as we can.

    You need to weigh if it's worth the hastle and expense to put together new cards, promo packs, banners, websites, facebook and other media along with basically throwing away your current merchandise.

    Know this, you will be starting from scratch. It's like hitting the reset button.
  6. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Well, we were "The Originals," but then there was another band in the East End called "The Originals," so we changed our name to "The New Originals." :D
  7. Now THAT'S original.
  8. dalkowski

    dalkowski Supporting Member

    May 20, 2009
    Massachusetts USofA
    I forget -- what year did they kick Molly out of the band?
  9. Raymeous


    Jul 2, 2010
    San Diego
    Generally speaking don't change a thing.

    The only time I would consider changing a bands name is when something monumentally changed. If a member of the band leaves/gets booted, and they owned the majority of the songs or the band name, then it would be time for a change. If you were in "Ronny J and the Big Sticks" and Ronny left, or your current bands reputation got soooo bad that it was useless to try and fix it, that is when a name change is in order. That kind of thing.

    If you have an established following, the swag, the network, and club owners like you, I wouldn't change a thing. Just be more picky with your saudition selections in the future.

    You're still in a great place from the sounds of it. No reason to risk screwing things up.
  10. gard0300


    Jan 10, 2011
    Vandalia, Ohio
    All good advice. The name doesn't contain anyone's name or anything. It's just gets embarrassing personally to keep parading new members out to the patrons.
    Quality control hasn't slipped any, mainly because I tend to have a handle of the pulse of the band. If I feel we cannot provide a good show, we won't play that show or schedule any shows until the matter is fixed.
    We are lucky to have bar owners calling us for the last year or two. Which makes things easier for me. I'm no longer beating down doors to get into places.
    Style wise, we have changed a little. But it's still rock to a hard rock sound. So I believe we are still catering to the same type of crowd.
    I guess I've always wanted to keep the name, but it feels good to hear your advice. It makes me feel like I'm doing this for the betterment of the band and not for selfish reasons. Thanks :)
  11. dalkowski

    dalkowski Supporting Member

    May 20, 2009
    Massachusetts USofA
    To be candid, that's something you just have to get over, and maybe a solution is to just not draw attention to it. Or not overthink it.

    Then ask yourself, "Does anyone in the audience really care?" Especially if you're rockin' it well and getting so much love from audiences and venue owners.

    If you're getting gigs and people are coming, it's because of your repertoire, your sound and your show, not because of one person. Clearly people equate your band with a good night out. That's so enviable! You're doing a lot right, and you're fortunate to have such a good thing going.
  12. Yep...you are over thinking this. Keep the old name.
  13. BlueTalon

    BlueTalon Happy Cynic

    Mar 20, 2011
    Spokane, Washington
    Endorsing Artist: Turnstyle Switch
    I don't get this. You introduce the band members, right? Just ignore the fact that a change was necessary, and celebrate the fact that you got a new kickass singer/drummer/guitar player from wherever, and he (she) is going to rock your socks off tonight!
  14. Moe Monsarrat

    Moe Monsarrat Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2006
    Austin, Tx.
    Endorsing artist:Regenerate Guitar Works Carvin, Micheal Kelly Guitars
    Don't throw away any momentum you may have with the name. People are hard to re-educate and club owners count on your draw. They won't like the idea.
  15. Phantasm

    Phantasm I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For.

    Sep 16, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Based on the information you have provided, I don't see a need to change the name of the band. Carry on.
  16. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    Who is The Alan Parson Project? Steely Dan? Santa Esmerelda? The Archies?

    Whatever players the owner of the name and concept decided was the right mix at the moment...

    Keep the name - the players are whoever fits the concept at the moment...
  17. dalkowski

    dalkowski Supporting Member

    May 20, 2009
    Massachusetts USofA
    I will say that the Archies lost me as a fan when Jughead quit and went over to Beetle Bailey's hardcore outfit.

    (Actually, there is an Alan Parsons. He engineered an little audio trifle called Dark Side of the Moon.)
  18. Hues


    Nov 27, 2012
    see Burn Notice
    You're established...Let it ride.

    The last ELO performance I saw was on VH1's Songwriters show....The only person from the known line-up was Jeff Lynne up front.


    Guitarist Mick Jones created and is the only constant member in Foreigner.

    Journey goes on w/o Steve Perry. Styx w/o Dennis DeYoung. Meatloaf without a brain. Lynyrd Skynyrd and on and on....
  19. Someone mentioned brand. Dead on. You would be NUTS to abandon your brand!

    You get good bookings at better rates and people come to your shows knowing ( more or less) exactly what they are going to get, give or take a particular face, which doesn't faze them, they have a good time and come back for more.
  20. ga_edwards


    Sep 8, 2000
    UK, Essex
    If you have founding members in the line up then keep the name.

    If there's one thing I don't care for its when a band has been going for so long that there's no founding or 'classic' line up members left, yet they're still trading under the same name. Brand or not. It's not the same band anymore. Like Dr Feelgood for example.

    Actually, I just remembered, Thin Lizzy have recently changed their name for this very reason. Kudos to them.

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