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The Story Behind Band Names

What’s behind a band’s name?

Interviewers often ask bands “what does your name mean?” — here are some band names that reference other bands, songs, movies, pop culture, and history.

Say Anything is named after the 1989 movie Say Anything…

School of Seven Bells refers to a mythical school that taught pickpockets in South America called School of Seven Bells.

Phantom Planet refers to the 1961 science fiction movie The Phantom Planet:

Sun Kil Moon is named after a Korean boxer named Sung Kil Moon.

Uh Huh Her is the name of PJ Harvey’s sixth album (and a song on that album):

Dum Dum Girls is named after an Iggy Pop song called “Dum Dum Boys” and an album by The Vaselines called Dum Dum.

Girl In A Coma is named after The Smiths’ song “Girlfriend In A Coma”:

Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. refers to the stock car racer Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Franz Ferdinand refers to Franz Ferdinand, the archduke of the Austrian-Hungarian empire whose assassination sparked World War I.

Rooney is named after Ed Rooney, the principal in the movie Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

Tilly and the Wall refers to a book for children called Tillie and The Wall by Leo Lionni.

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