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Names -> Band Name Origins -> J, Page 1

Do you know why a band picked out it's name? Feel free to let us know.

I can't verify all of these stories, so do take them with a grain of salt. I try and delete the ones that I know to be bogus, but I don't know the origins of every band name (and some bands intentionally tell different stories about picking their band name).

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Entries starting with J are split into multiple pages: 1 2

There are 4771 Band Name Origin entries on the site.

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J-39 The band have to come off Junction 40 on the motorway to get home. J40 didn't sound as good as J39 to the band. tyke
J. Geils Band The band name is after the guitarist JOHN Geils, not Jerome. The lead singer used to call J. Geils a host of 'nicknames' including Jerome, even though his real name is John. J., he now goes by "Jay Geils". Tim
The J. Geils Band Jerome Geils was the musician who put the band together. Rock Nurse
Ja Rule his initials jeffery atkins (JA) Represents Unrequited Loves Existance (RULE) lala
Ja RULE I heard from a site that Ja Rule was a ruler of Hong Kong and he was Japanese. As a child Ja Rule (the singer) loved him. He used to watch him on the news and even started his own groupie. So one day he became a singer and named himself Ja Rule. It stands for Japenese Ruler.  Hana
Jack Killed Jill They couldn't come up with a name and when asked what was the first song everyone in the band had ever learned to sing/play, the singer blurted out Jack And Jill. They toyed with other ideas but kept "killed" cause it was easier to remember. Terry
Jack Off Jill The band was originally called "Jack in Jill" but during one of Jessicka and Marilyn Manson's sleep deprivation sessions to induce natural hallucinations, Manson convinced Jessicka to change the name to "Jack Off Jill". C.
Jack Off Jill Yes Jack In Jill was the original name to Jack off Jill...Manson and Jessicka (singer) had insomnia and in order to see who would become famous first they seen who could stay up the longest..sometime during that Manson convinced Jessicka to name the band Jack Off I found this out from quotes by Jessicka they are correct. (oh by the way Manson stayed up 45 mins longer than Jessicka.) CUNT
Jack Off Jill Jessicka originally wanted to call JOJ -Jack In Jill, somnolent (meaning of a kind likely to induce sleep), the pills, or drowsy. In the early days of JOJ Jessicka would stay up for days and days on end in order to hallucinate naturally. Some of the song titles such as Lollirot, Boygrinder, & Cherry Scented from the demos came from sleep deprived delusions. Her coconspirator Manson suffered the same heat insomnia. They made a pact that whoever could stay up the longest got to be a huge rock star. Needless to say he stayed up 45 minutes longer then she did. Perhaps in her sleep deprived state he convinced her on settling on the name Jack Off Jill. GothicCupcakes
Jack Off Jill The previous entry is only partially true. JOJ's original name (Jack In Jill) came from a play of words of when Jessicka (the singer) was in jail and saw carved on the wall "Jack and Jill went up a hill, Jack came down and killed a cop." or something like that. Later, when hanging out with Manson, in his usual sarcasm, Manson was joking "Jack Off Jill" and that stuck. S.
Jack Off Jill Jessicka, lead singer and a founding member of Jack Off Jill, originally wanted to call Jack Off Jill -Jack In Jill, somnolent (meaning of a kind likely to induce sleep), the pills, or drowsy. In the early days of Jack Of Jill Jessicka would stay up for days and days on end in order to hallucinate naturally. Some of the song titles such as Lollirot, Boygrinder, & Cherry Scented from the demos came from sleep deprived delusions. Her coconspirator Manson suffered the same heat insomnia. They made a pact that whoever could stay up the longest got to be a huge rock star. Needless to say he stayed up 45 minutes longer then she did. Perhaps in her sleep deprived state he convinced her on settling on the name Jack Off Jill? Louise
Jack Off Jill Marilyn manson and the band members of Jack Off Jill were sitting on a couch trying to think of a name for the new band. Then the singer of Jack Off Jill asked Manson to think of a name and he responded "Jack Off Jill" Syphon
Jack's Mannequin Andrew McMahon liked "The Mannequins" but hated band names with "the" in it. He had a childhood friend whose brother had leukemia named Jack. Also, the first song that McMahon recorded without Something Corporate was called "Dear Jack". It was a coincidence that McMahon himself was diagnosed with leukemia just when he was launching his side project.  M
Jack's Mannequin Taken from Andrew's Interview on Djrossstar: One day him and clutch were walking around Philedelphia and noticed in all the urban stores there were no black mannequins. He thought that would be a good name for a band, but when it came time to name the project he didn't think "The Black Mannequins" would go over too well and one of the first songs he wrote for the band was called "Dear Jack". "Jack" rhymes with "black" and you get Jack's Mannequin. Meg
Jacks Broken Heart This San Diego punk band got their name from Fightclub, the movie "I am jack's broken heart..." tayler
Jackson 5 because there last name was jackson and there were 5 boys in the band zac rogers
The Jacksons As everyone knows, the Jacksons were all brothers named Jackson, who originally recorded as the Jackson 5. They considered changing their name to the Jackson 6 when youngest brother Randy joined the act. But then they left Motown Records, who owned the rights to the Jackson 5 trademark. It was simpler to change the name to change the band name to "The Jacksons." Ironically, Jermaine left the band as a result of the record deal with CBS, because he was married to the daughter of Motown's CEO, so there were still five brothers in the act. But the name "Jacksons" stuck. Tim Horrigan
Jaggerz Band was a one hit wonder from Pittsburgh, PA. Jaggers to anyone from Western Penna. is a nuisance burr that sticks to you when you walk thru weeds. Technically its "burdock". The group picked it but changed the s to a z to add a little pizzazz. They liked the irritating aspect of "Jaggerz"  Jim Kuza
The Jam According to "The Jam: The Authorised Biography," by Paolo Hewitt, Paul Weller's sister commented at the breakfast table that there was already a band called "Bread," but there wasn't a band called Jam. Roderick
The Jam The band used to "jam" at lunchtime and after school Phil
The Jam The sleeve notes of one of my Jam cd's says that Paul Wellers sister came up with the name at breakfast one day. Jason Bassett
James NOT named after James Joyce.# Quote from 'folklore-the official history' stewtee
James Tribute to the Irish writer James Joyce phildo
Jamiroquai I'd just like to put something straight- yes, most of the entries here are correct about the jamming of the band and the Iroquai tribe. ZephyrZ, however, is 100% incorrect, firstly because Jamaroqui is not one person. Second, because the lead singer of Jamiroqui's name is Jason Kay. Not Jamie Rockway. sunshine
Jamiroquai The name Jamiroquai is a conglomeration of the word "jam" and the name of the Native American peoples, the Iroquois but mispelled "iroquai" as Jay Kay said into an interview. murlancio
Jamiroquai His real name is "Jamie (or jamey) Rockway" which he shortened to Jamiroquai. ZephyrZ
Jamiroquai Contrary to a previous post, the name "Jamiroquai" is a juxtaposition of "Jam," a general music term, and an alternate spelling of "Iroquois," the Native American tribe. The original band members, including current frontman Jay Kay, were staunch environmentalists and admired the respect for the Earth that they saw in various Native American cultures. Thus, they derived part of their name from the Iroquois tribe in honor of them.  Eric
Jamiroquai From the type of music they love (Jam) and a NW Pennsylvania Indian Tribe (Iroquois...pronounced EAR-ah-KWOY, where Erie comes from). From the All Music Guide and from their record rep. monkeygirl
Jamiroquai  An Australian term for "one hit wonder" im australian, and no. not as far as ive ever heard. undone
Jamiroquai Being a Jamiroquai fan and an Australian, I can tell you that I've never heard anyone here use the term "Jamiroquai" as a meaning for 'one hit wonder'. I think the suggestion about the Indians is much more believable. OZ
Jamiroquai Two rumours: 1) Singer Jay Kay has a big interest in IROQUAI Indians and wanted his band to JAM. 2) An Australian term for "one hit wonder" Once again, I leave you to make up your own mind.  Bobo
Jamiroquai The name Jamiroquai is a conglomeration of the word "jam" and the name of the Native American peoples, the Iroquois, indigenous to central and eastern United States and Canada. The Iroquois Confederacy or Iroquois League - consisting of the Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, and Seneca Indians - was the most powerful and advanced American Indian nation from the early seventeenth century until the American Revolution (in which most tribes joined the British and were massacred during the war). There are still some Mohawk and Cayuga living on reservations in Ontario, most Oneida are in Wisconsin. Most Iroquois now live in New York. The Iroquois population in the US and Canada is today around 29,000. In the liner notes to Emergency on Planet Earth, Jay Kay writes that the name Jamiroquai is put forth to the Iroquois and other Native American peoples "with the utmost respect to all of you because I know you are right." The value placed on natural law and the earth in this message from Jay would seem to grow out of his admiration of the cultures of the Iroquois and other Native American peoples. On the track "Manifest Destiny," from the band's second album, The Return of the Space Cowboy, Jay reflects upon the more than four centuries of violent, rapacious subjugation of the Native American peoples, expressing a profound sadness and attempting to come to terms with "the shame of my ancestry."  void_nonsense
Jamiroquai Singer Jay Kay has a big interest in IROQUAI Indians and wanted his band to JAM. That would be nice, if it wasn't spelled "Iroquois." Kielle
Jane's Addiction they named themselves after jimi hendrix's girlfriend Jane who was a heroin addict. i read it in an interview(dave navarro said it himself) step
Jane's Addiction A bit of debate here. First story: they are named after a drug addicted manager they worked with named Jane. Second story: the name comes from a hooker named Jane who was a huge fan in their early days. She loved them so much they were "Jane's Addiction".  Bobo
The Janet Street-Porters This Winchester-based Manic Street Preachers tribute band took their name from the famous (in Britain) pioneer of 'yoof' television. Oliver Levy
JarCreW The drummer and a friend trying to find band names lookin through a dictionary and JAR was come across as sharp piercing noise and CREW is self explanitory and they sounded good together, plus it sounded cooler than "minus the freak". Jackobi
Jars of Clay The name is taken from a verse in the Bible. 2 Corinithians 4:7 - "Yet we who have this spiritual treasure are like common clay pots, in order to show that the supreme power belongs to God, not to us." (GN) The verse also forms the basis for several of their songs. David
Jars of Clay Jars of Clay takes it's name from II Corinthians 4:7. "We have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us."  Jim F
Jars of Clay The bands favorite Bible Verse, 2 Corinthians, 4:16. Todd
Jars of Clay From the Bible in II Corinthians 4:7 Lydz
Jay - Z Jay-Z got his name because he always dressed nice and his friends said he was jazzy... this became Jay - Z as it flows of the tounge better!!! Gangstar
Jay-Z A play on a few things. Yes, the two trains that run thru Marcy Projects, but also homage to two of his idols: rapper Jaz-O and Harlem crack vet JZ. blakklojik
Jay-Z At first he was called Jazz 'cos he's a big jazz fan then he just changed it to Jay-z cos Jazz didn't sound rap enough! 2QT
Jay-Z Named after 2 subway trains (J & Z) that serve the Marcy Projects in Brooklyn where he grew up. Augustus Del Monte
Jayne Mansfield's Head Named after female actress Jayne Mansfield, who was erroneously reported as being decapitated. Also from a National LAMPOON bumper sticker that read "I brake for Jayne Mansfield's Head". BUCK.SLIME@VERIZON.NET
Jeans, Not Dresses Two girls got together and they were trying to become famous. They haven't yet, but I promise they will and only I will know the story. [Ed.'s note: Still like the name, even though this is more than likely wishful thinking.] Billy Bob
Jebediah A great Australian band who simply loved the Simpsons so much - they named themselves after Springfields founding father - jebediah springfield! Mello
Jebediah Named the band after Jebediah Springfield from The Simpsons. Shaun
The Jebus They were watching the simpsons one day, and Homer Simpson says "I can't go to church, I don't even beileive in Jebus!" And they all cracked up, so the named the band 'The Jebus' Former Band Names: Gee-Whiz, Cheese Whiz, The Munkeeys, and The Divas. Punkimiki
Jefferson Airplane A Jefferson Airplane is when you pinch a marajuana roach around two paper matches as an improvised roach clip. Chuck Saint
Jefferson Airplane They take their name from a device used to roll marijuana joints. Mike
Jefferson Airplane It's all so simple . . . Jefferson Airplane is hippie slang for a "nickel bag," "nickel high," or "nickel trip" - each of which already is hippie slang, come to think of it. Now, a "nickel" isn’t slang for 5-cents, though that would make more sense, as you’ll see, but for $5 -- go figure. You see, on the face of each US 5-cent-piece, or "nickel," is a headshot in profile of Thomas Jefferson - as in Jefferson Airplane. And for purposes of this explanation, "Airplane" not only symbolizes, but, coincidently, actually is a means of reaching and traveling at altitude – or, shall we say, for "getting high." So bringing it all together, "Jefferson Airplane" is a somewhat awkwardly mixed metaphor for a means of creating an altered state costing $5. Might've been $5 worth of grass in a baggie (much more for the money back then) or a $5 worth of acid, buttons, or mushrooms - all of which were de rigueur in the halcyon days of Haight Ashbury, which was Jefferson Airplane’s ‘60s point of departure. I recall it went something like this, "Hey, man, like why don't we call it the jefferson airplane or something." "Hmm. Yeah, why, like, man, why don’t we." "Uh, maybe, like, we should." "Yeah." "Yeah, man." "Yeah." "Yeah, cool."  Jim Mc.
Jefferson Airplane A friend of the band's guitarist invented an imaginary blues musician named Blind Thomas Jefferson Airplane, after Blind Lemon Jefferson. Greg G.
Jefferson Airplane Inspired by the blues player Blind Lemon Jefferson and the name of a friend's dog. Some say JEFFERSON AIRPLANE was slang for a paper match split to hold a joint.  Bobo
Jefferson Airplane  While it is the above is true, that has nothing to do with them choosing their name. Jefferson Airplane was named by guitar player Jorma Kaukonen in relation to a friend of his who gave people strange nick-names and Jorma's was "Blind Thomas Jefferson Airplane" (Based on "Blind Lemmon Jefferson") The others were trying to think of a band name that sounded "silly" enough to work and this was what came up. Mjn Seifer
Jello Biafra  The lead singer of the Dead Kennedys chose his name by putting Jello (soft, squishy and delicious American gluttony) and Biafra (an African nation surrounded and starved out to complete extinction by U.S. and British forces for political reasons. /
Jem Her full name is Jemma Griffiths but one of her friens pointed out that it sounds like a librarian's name, so she shortened it to Jem. sonikal
Jesus Chrysler Superstar Parody of famous musical Jesus Christ Superstar. (mmm... parody) Bobo
Jesus Crimp The lead singer's great uncle would be reprimanded by his wife whenever he uttered "Jesus Christ!" To appease her, he coined the phrase "Jesus Crimp!" Spooky
Jesus Jones "Jesus" (say "Hey-suss") is the most popular male first name in the Spanish language. "Jones" is the most common surname in English. "Jee-suss Jones" sounded better phonetically hence the band name. Perverse 1993
Jesus Jones On a vacation to Spain, the band decided to change their name. They were Brits (referred to as "Joneses") surrounded by people named Jesus (pronounced "Hey-Zeus"). Brian Kelly
Jesus Lizard The band knew a Spanish guy who had the name Jesus (Pronounced Heyzoos) Lizardos. They asked him if they could use his name. He said yes. Heard it in an interview with the band on the radio when they came to NZ. Krytic
The Jesus Lizard In an interview, David You said the band named themselves after a lizard that can run across water very fast without sinking, aka, the Jesus lizard. IIRC, he said Touch & Go Records founder Corey Rusk had one, which inspired them to take the name. kurt
Jesus Loves Junkies Religious Satire. The name of the band was based on the Karl Marx quote, where he stated that "...religion was the opiate of the people (masses)..." A familiar backdrop at JLJ shows was a stained glass window depicting a naked Jesus with a syringe 'phallus' and his eight-ball hemorage eyed "junkie"apostles kneeling before him to recieve their 'daily bread' . Band was an apocalyptic mixture of electronic, industrial and blasphemous rock. Members included Jeff Wambolt, Patrick Orcutt and several other revolving door musicians. Serious music from a even more seriously overlooked and underestimated band. Cousin P(X)
Jesus Martyr They got their name after making a song called "F**king Jesus Martyr" Kiri
Jet a Paul McCartney song inspired this bands name, while AC/DC inspired the music JiB
Jethro Tull Ian explains: "I was not the author of the Jethro Tull name. The original Jethro Tull was an 18th century agriculturalist. He was also something of an inventor. He invented the seed drill. He built his first prototype seed drill from the foot pedals of his local church organ. When it was suggested as one of our weekly names for our band in its early days by our agent we said 'ok, we'll be Jethro Tull this week.' The reason for all that was that we were not a terribly good group when we first started, and the only way we could get re-booked into the clubs we played at was to pretend to be somebody different every week... often we didn't know who we were-- the agent forgot to tell us-- so we would arrive at some club, and we'd look down the list of bands playing... whichever one we'd never heard of before, we knew that must be us. The time we got asked back to the Marquee club we had to stick with the name we had that week, which happened to be Jethro Tull. It's not a name I feel particularly wonderful about. I feel faintly embarrassed about it because it's not an original name. It's somebody else's name."  Bill Fawcett
Jethro Tull In the history of Tull vid Ian points out that "Jethro Tull" was the name of the inventor of the contour plow. This device allowed people to plow over terrain that had not been leveled, and America went wild with it, plowing everything in site....and leading to the "Dustbowl of the 1930's", when giant duststorms savaged the country because nothing was left to hold the topsoil in place.... Too Old to Rock and Roll...
Jethro Tull It's true that they were not well accepted in the early times. In Ian's words, "we were not a particularly good band". It was their booking agent who picked the names which changed frequently. The band members would look down the list of bands playing that night on the way to the venue. Which ever name they didn't recognize was their name for that night. One night it was "Jethro Tull" and it stuck. Mr. Smeebo
Jethro Tull Jethro Tull was an actual peson, famous in British history for having invented the mechanical seed-drill, a kind of proto-tractor. Since Ian Anderson's lyrics often evoke Englan'd pre-industrial past, the name resonates with nostalgia. Khalil
Jethro Tull As has been said, they frequently changed there name. But Jethro Tull was named after one of Ian's music teachers. Jeff Johnson
Jethro Tull 16th century inventor of the seed drill. zap
Jethro Tull They actually did take their name from the agronomist Jethro Tull. According to founder Ian Anderson, the band sucked so bad at first that they were often banned after their first gigs, so they changed their name often. They had run out of cool names and were down to flipping through an encyclopedia when the came up with Jethro Tull, and that happened to be the name they used when they had their first successful gigs in London. DGM/Atlanta
Jethro Tull The name of an old Irish Poet Chris Bains
Jethro Tull Yes, he was an Irish inventor. And his name comes from biblical times: As the Bible states in Exodus 4:18 "And Moses went and returned to Jethro his father in law, and said unto him, Let me go, I pray thee, and return unto my brethren which are in Egypt, and see whether they be yet alive. And Jethro said to Moses, Go in peace". andre
Jethro Tull Ian Anderson stated in an interview that when the band first formed they were so bad they were never allowed back in the same venue twice. As a result they changed their name frequently. "Jethro Tull" happened to be the name they were using when they were "noticed" by a record company man. Charlie
Jethro Tull Heard an interview with Ian Anderson. Said back in the scuzzy old days in Blackpool, when the gigs were kind of unsteady, they'd just make a band name up on the way to the gig. They played out one night as JT, and started to get a little following, so they were kinda stuck with it.  James
Jethro Tull Yes, they were really bad when they first started out, so their manager,Terry Ellis, picked a new name for them each week in order to get re-booked. They went through names such as "Ian Henderson's (not andersons) Bag of Blues", "Candy Colored Rain", and Jethro Tull happened to be the name they used the night that they were actually well recieved. The club invited them back and so the name had to stick. Nicole Kidman
Jethro Tull From the official Jethro Tull site: "Back in February, 1968, we had many different names which usually changed every week, since we were so bad that we had to pretend to be some new band in order to get re-booked in the clubs where we aspired to find fame and fortune. Our agent, who had studied History at college, came up with the name Jethro Tull (an eighteenth century English agricultural pioneer who invented the seed drill). That was the band name during the week in which London's famous Marquee Club offered us the Thursday night residency. So it stuck. Is it too late to change? I thought so." motor67
Jethro Tull As someone said, Irish agriculturalist inventor of the seed drill (19th century though I think?) - story is that they kept changing the band name so they could get re-booked in clubs, and when Chrysalis signed them this was the one they happened to be using at the time... mRsssonic
Jethro Tull According to Ian Anderson, back when the band first started out they were so awful that nobody would ever invite them back for a second gig. So they had to change the name of the band after every performance. Jethro Tull was the first name they used which resulted in a return invitation, so it stuck. tull fan
Jethro Tull Jethro Tull was the man who invented the seed drill. A sad, pointless fact I learned studying the industrial revolution in sophmore world history, his contributions revolutionized farming and blah de blah, the industrialized world we live in today. Why they picked to name their band after a farming mechanic from the 1880's escapes me luc
Jethro Tull Jethor Tull invented the seed drill in the 18th century. His creation enabled the industrial revolution.  Dan
Jetpack The surf group's whole image is of the early 60s' jet age. They play surf/sci-fi spy music on old 60's Fenders, wear suits, and Jetpack Daniel J has hornrimmed glasses . The jet- pack device of the same name is from many films and cartoons of the era of surf music, like James Bond and the Jetsons and the old Disney Land "Tommorowland." It is a "retro-future" icon, in a long list of many, like flying cars and moon bases, that were hoped to become a reality, probably by 1975! :) surf fan
Jets to Brazil Consumable Online: "How did you decide on the band name?" Blake S.: "Well, Chris, our drummer, came into practice with it one day." Also, the name Jets to Brazil briefly appears in the movie "Breakfast at Tiffany's" on a yellow poster during a tracking shot near the end of the film. Price
Jevice Jewelry Voice Robert D. Arndt Jr.
Jewel That is her real name - Jewel Kilcher David Pratter
Jewish Fiery Pirates One of the band members was obsessed with everything Jewish and one was obsessed with everything pirates. They thought it would be quirky to add them together as 'Jewish Pirates'. Fiery was only added for effect. Jen
JFA An 80's punk band. JFA stands for Jodie Foster's Army. All punks hated the President in the early 80's. You can figure out the rest.  Beau Tanker
JFA Jodie Foster's Army Bobo
Jim's Super Stereoworld The Jim bit is obviously the singers name Super is because the music is and Stereoworld from the film Boogie Nights and Jim also solos as James Robert Morrison which answers itself nevaready
Jimi Hendrix Experience Originally the band was going to be called "Jimi James and the Blue Flames". Aaron
Jimi Hendrix Experience Jimi James and the Blue Flames was the name of the band Jimi played in before the Experience was put together. alpal
Jimi Hendrix Experience Hendrix was the guitarist and he wanted you to experience his band. fred
The Jimis not a condom, but from an old friend who called all good music the jimmy jams. It was shortend into "the jimis". .:variant:.
Jimmie's Chicken Shack A shady blues restaurant in Harlem where young Charlie Parker and Malcom X hung out. There are a lot of "Jims" in the band, too.  Bobo
Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band Jimmy Buffett gave his band this name as a play on the words "coral reef," and the slang term for marijuana: reefer. The name went perfectly with the marijuana smoking image of the early band and the Island Key West influence. Paul Leslie
Jimmy Eat World Tom Linton, the Jimmy Eat World guitar player, had two brothers, Ed and Jim, who were always fighting. Jim used to win, he was strong-er because he was overweight. Ed thought up what he believed was a revenge - he sticked a piece of paper to the door of Jim's room, and guess what that paper said...  Stephy
Jimmy Eat World The guitarist's (Tom Linton) brother drew a picture of another of his brothers (who was portly and named Jimmy) eating the Earth. daniel

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