Artistic aliases

general questions, comments and ideas about recording, audio, music, etc.
dynomike
carpal tunnel
Posts: 1651
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2003 8:26 am

Artistic aliases

Post by dynomike » Tue Jan 18, 2005 8:05 pm

I've got this idea that I should have some kind of an alias for my musical identity. I can really only think of three reasons: 1. My real name is hard to spell, thus potentially confusing fans. 2. My real name isn't particularly cool or memorable. 3. Having an alias allows for switching between solo artist and band scenarios secretively.

I don't know if this is a good idea or not. I already have a relatively popular website (over 500 unique ip's hit it this month) under my current name, Mike Kuehn. So, switching might mean temporarily more confusion. But, I am planning my first actual cd release for this spring, so I'd like to get it straight before then.

I'm sure some of you guys have artistic aliases. Do you find this a plus/minus/neutral? All I can think of is:
song titles from bands that I'd like to promote (ie. "memory machine" (dismemberment plan))
something consciously not "bandy" sounding (ie. "i love alison" (i do.))
something ironically "bandy" sounding, since i'm a solo act (ie. "mikey q and the magic two")

None of these ideas strike me as something that I won't regret later, except perhaps the last. :D Help me!

Michael Timothy Kuehn
Making Efforts and Forging Ahead Courageously! Keeping Honest and Making Innovations Perpetually!

User avatar
Mark Alan Miller
dead but not forgotten
Posts: 2097
Joined: Wed Apr 14, 2004 6:58 pm
Location: Western MA
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by Mark Alan Miller » Tue Jan 18, 2005 8:36 pm

I've always been kind of a one-man-band in the studio. I've used one particular "alternate moniker" for years...

Someday, I might release some music under my real name too - and like you mention, that allows for an 'identity shift'.

Just try not to sound like a "local band" - whatever that means :roll: but you all know what I mean. :)
he took a duck in the face at two and hundred fifty knots.

http://www.radio-valkyrie.com/ao/aoindex.htm - download the new record (free is an option!) or get it on CD.

darling
audio school
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 12:40 pm
Location: losangeles

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by darling » Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:09 pm

Hey Mike -
I think your name is cool, I thought it WAS an alias.

keep it and wear it proud - dave darling (my real name)

User avatar
wedge
tinnitus
Posts: 1088
Joined: Tue Jul 06, 2004 9:08 pm
Location: Washington, D.C.

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by wedge » Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:21 pm

darling wrote:Hey Mike -
I think your name is cool, I thought it WAS an alias.

keep it and wear it proud
I agree...

User avatar
bad_dude_69
re-cappin' neve
Posts: 681
Joined: Sun Jan 25, 2004 8:40 pm
Location: Chicago - IL

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by bad_dude_69 » Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:26 pm

ditto.

btw, did you know there actually was a product called the dynomike? it was this red microphone (kid's toy) with a button on it which you could utilize to shift your voice up or down an octave in semitone incriments.
medicate? oh, i thought you said "meditate."

Everybody's X
re-cappin' neve
Posts: 685
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 2:01 pm
Location: Kansas City Missouri
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by Everybody's X » Tue Jan 18, 2005 11:11 pm

at least it's a unique name man. My name is Dave Johnson, just a boring-ass generic name.
the only one worse is my buddy John Smith.

"hey man, do you know Dave Johnson?

"uh yeah, about 12 of them"

My middle name is Matthew, so I went by Dave Matthews until a certain south african came to prominence. :twisted: (his freakin name is probably Dave Jones)

I think your name is unique enough to get attention.
Dave Johnson
allcapsproductions.com

SKEETER
steve albini likes it
Posts: 385
Joined: Mon May 03, 2004 5:11 pm
Location: western hemisphere
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by SKEETER » Wed Jan 19, 2005 12:11 am

I think it depends on what you are trying to accomplish, If you are doing all original stuff on a campus circuit, it is probably a very good idea. If you are doing music for people to dance to in VFWs, it might come of as being somewhat presumptuous.

Rigsby
mixes from purgatory
Posts: 2908
Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2004 12:34 am
Location: London, England
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by Rigsby » Wed Jan 19, 2005 3:16 am

I think your name's cool Mike, maybe it's a UK thing, but you're the first Kuehn i've 'met' (decided not to use 'come across for obvious reasons), and if you're getting good traffic then i wouldn't change it.

You should probably know though that i've been visiting your site fairly regularly on most of my 498 computers.
The large print giveth, and the small print taketh away.

rigsbysmith.com

User avatar
soundguy
ghost haunting audio students
Posts: 3182
Joined: Wed May 07, 2003 12:50 pm
Location: NYC
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by soundguy » Wed Jan 19, 2005 3:19 am

everyone liked my original alias, but then I tried to sue my label to changed my original alias to a new alias which was a heiroglyphic and once all that bullshit was over, I went back to my original alias.

In the end, it was just easier to use my real name.
dave
http://www.glideonfade.com
one hundred percent discrete transistor recording with style and care.

Professor
ghost haunting audio students
Posts: 3307
Joined: Wed May 07, 2003 2:11 pm
Location: I have arrived... but where the hell am I?

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by Professor » Wed Jan 19, 2005 3:22 am

Yeah, there was this guy from Austria back in the 70s who wanted to get into the film industry in the US, and they told him his name was too long and hard to remember. They also didn't like his funny accent.
In his first movie, 'Hercules in New York' not only did they credit him as Arnold Strong, but they dubbed in someone else's voice to cover his accent.
Now he's the governer of California... but somehow that name escapes me.


Really though, use a stage name if you don't want to attach your name or your family's name to the work you are doing. Like if you're doing porn, or you're singing death metal but want to later have a career in politics. Plausible deniability is important there. But if you're not ashamed, and have no reason to use an alias other than some hunch that people won't be able to remember your name that just seems silly.
But then there is the great tradition of anagrams. Try rearranging the letters of your name to see what alternate personalities you might have. Vladimir Nabokov had a recurring side character in his novels named Vivian Darkbloom which was simply a rearrangment of the letters of his name and never became much of an alter-ego, but did leave a little fingerprint in the work.

-Jeremy

User avatar
Aeroplane Audio
alignin' 24-trk
Posts: 73
Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2004 7:48 pm
Location: Washington DC via Shawnee Mission Kansas
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by Aeroplane Audio » Wed Jan 19, 2005 3:49 am

Another solution would be to have a name that's some kind of a play on your real name.

Example: My name is Alex Abnos. But my little sister, who's 2 1/2 ,still has trouble pronouncing her "l"s ( i find most babies do). In any case...the phonetical spelling of what she calls me is "Ay-eex"....Which can also be spelled "Aiix". And...yeah. I just liked the way that looked on paper, and it still maintains some level of personal-icity...and there i had it.

I realize that kind of thing depends alot on your personal experiences...but it's a thing to consider.
"There are two kinds of mistakes: The regular kind, and the kind that don't sound too good"
-Thelonious Monk
--------------------------------------------------------
www.myspace.com/tuttutkc
www.myspace.com/ironpawrecords

the brill bedroom
pushin' record
Posts: 233
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2004 9:44 am
Location: Cambridge
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by the brill bedroom » Wed Jan 19, 2005 7:42 am

Martin Carr from the Boo Radleys does everything under the name Brave Captain these days. I wanted to do the same with the Brill Bedroom, actually, but as soon as I started playing with other people, they didn't like it. I didn't even really want it to be a band name, I didn't think I was starting another band, but it seems to be going that way. That's the problem; you find other guys who are worth playing with and they don't want to be in your backing band. It just naturally starts evolving into a band.

User avatar
NewAndImprov
re-cappin' neve
Posts: 670
Joined: Thu May 08, 2003 10:07 am
Location: Corvallis, OR
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by NewAndImprov » Thu Jan 20, 2005 12:38 pm

Professor wrote: But then there is the great tradition of anagrams. Try rearranging the letters of your name to see what alternate personalities you might have. Vladimir Nabokov had a recurring side character in his novels named Vivian Darkbloom which was simply a rearrangment of the letters of his name and never became much of an alter-ego, but did leave a little fingerprint in the work.
Anagrams rule! My dub/electronic solo project is called Admiral Twinkle Devil, it's an anagram of David William Trenkel. Was messing around with an anagram program, and it popped up.

User avatar
JGriffin
zen recordist
Posts: 6739
Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2003 1:44 pm
Location: criticizing globally, offending locally
Contact:

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by JGriffin » Thu Jan 20, 2005 2:01 pm

NewAndImprov wrote:
Professor wrote: But then there is the great tradition of anagrams. Try rearranging the letters of your name to see what alternate personalities you might have. Vladimir Nabokov had a recurring side character in his novels named Vivian Darkbloom which was simply a rearrangment of the letters of his name and never became much of an alter-ego, but did leave a little fingerprint in the work.
Anagrams rule! My dub/electronic solo project is called Admiral Twinkle Devil, it's an anagram of David William Trenkel. Was messing around with an anagram program, and it popped up.
Edward Gorey used to do this as well, publishing as Ogdred Weary and others...

then of course there's Mr. Mojo Risin'--an anagram of Drunk Irish Idiot...uh, Jim Morrison.
"Jeweller, you've failed. Jeweller."

"Lots of people are nostalgic for analog. I suspect they're people who never had to work with it." ? Brian Eno

All the DWLB music is at http://dwlb.bandcamp.com/

JASIII
george martin
Posts: 1418
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2003 8:59 am
Location: On the Tundra

Re: Artistic aliases

Post by JASIII » Thu Jan 20, 2005 2:07 pm

I've been thinking of taking on a professional moniker too. My last name is hard to pronounce, so I think I'm going to just drop my last name and become John August or Johnny August (August is my middle name).
"If you will starve unless you become a rock star, then you have bigger problems than whether or not you are a rock star. " - Steve Albini

Locked

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest