The Morning Benders have changed their name to Pop Etc, since they realised (after four years) that the word “bender” has negative and slightly homophobic connotations on this side of the pond. Here’s some other bands that needed to rethink their monikers.
Brother had to change their name to the much catchier Viva Brother after a challenge from a celtic rock band of the same name that no-one had ever heard of.
Believe it or not, Westlife were originally an even cheesier prospect that now. They used to be called Westside until a conflict with another band forced a change in 1999. Before that, they were known as (shudder) IOYOU.
The Verve, or Verve, as they were known before a clash with a jazz label of the same name meant they had to switch.
The Shadows were initially known as The Drifters, until their single ‘The Living Doll’ entered the American Top 40 and the US band of the same name took umbrage. Cliff Richard, incidentally, was originally Harry Webb too.
This lot formed in 1979 as Silmarillion, named after the JRR Tolkein book, but changed to Marillion in 1981 to avoid legal issues. Their singer, Fish, was born David Dick, so you can appreciate his need to change his name too.
Meet Liberty, a band formed of five rejects from Popsters: The Rivals. They soon became Liberty X after a lengthy challenge from a 1990’s funk R&B band.
The Electric Soft Parade were once simply The Soft Parade, but had to add eight extra letters after a challenge from an American Doors covers band (who were named after a Jim Morrision track of the same name).
David Bowie has had several personas over the years, but he started life as a performer as Davy Jones. After too much confusion with The Monkees’ Davy Jones, he made the switch. His son, film director Duncan Jones, uses the family name.
The Chemical Brothers actually named themselves after some other musicians, famous Beastie Boys collaborators The Dust Brothers. Eventually, when these two got more famous, the original band filed a law suit and a new name was chosen.
The Charlatans were sent a lawsuit by a defunct US band as their success stateside soared. They chose an imaginative title for their tours over there – The Charlatans UK.
Blink 182 added the numbers after a dispute with an Irish band called Blink. As will all of these cases, you never hear from the “original” bands.
The Raconteurs are another band with a dispute down under. When they visit Australia, they’re known as The Saboteurs.
Death From Above 1979 added the date after a wrangle with New York label DFA records. Sebastien Grainger explained the date thus: “1979 is the year of my birth, 1979 is the year of ‘Off the Wall’, 1979 is the year of ‘The Pleasure Principle'”.
Suede picked the fantastic title The London Suede for their excursions Stateside. It didn’t help their sales prospects.
Yazoo, also known as Yaz in the US, after a $3.5 million lawsuit from a crappy American band who’d already chosen the odd title.
Spinal Tap had several name changes at the start of their (fictional) career. They begun life as The Originals, then changed to The New Originals. The Thamesmen followed before they settled on their current name.