What’s In A Name?

Posted on July 31, 2010

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Really? I ask myself this quite often and I consistently get the same answer.

EVERYTHING!

The question is how do you get that name? How do you earn the name that represents something so well that when people refer to it, they refer to it as YOUR name?

Let me give you a “for instance”. You don’t just go online to do a web search on that girl you met last week, you GOOGLE her. A word that has nothing to do with web searching is synonymous with the actual action of searching the web. What’s better than that is, it isn’t even a word. It’s a derivation of the word Googol.

Googol definition: A googol is the large number 10100, that is, the digit 1 followed by one hundred zeros in decimal representation.

So what does that have to do with searching the web? Nada! Nada damn thing. They made it up, and worked hard to make it a name. They have proven that it works.

So let me ask you, what the hell is an Aerosmith, and what does it have to do with music? Well, it has everything to do with rock and roll.

Aerosmith Definition: ROCK!

Okay, let me get to the point here before you click off the page.  The question is, what’s in a name? The answer is, a name is representative of something that has become well versed in functional conversation relating to a specific. In the case of Aerosmith, that term is ass kicking, blues laden rock and roll.

But how does a name become synonymous with something so broad, so deep and so well known? That is both easy and impossible to explain, so lets do just that. All this music you listened to came from a day when Elvis shook his leg, Robert Plant Squeezed his Lemon and of course, when the Beatles sang just about everything that they sang. It also came around every time Aerosmith hit the stage to perform the songs they sold millions of copies of around the globe.

But how did they do that? They had an amazing lightshow? Technicians to make the performance sparkle? High quality gear with a professional sound? Money to get the show on the road?

Nope. They were a bunch of guys playing for 35 people in a basement bowling alley in Hopedale, Massachusetts. They were taking the instruments they had and they were practicing performance and songwriting on them. They were playing songs that people knew and working on rhythms they felt good about because they listened to popular music from the historical audio archives and learned how to reproduce the sound that got people moving and shaking. They worked at it.

As time went on, the music that other people listened to became the music Aerosmith wrote.  They became the big brothers, playing the clubs that the next wave of musicians were going to see to inspire their songs and their performances. People liked it and asked radio to play it. They bought the albums, attended the shows, provided the fan base because the music was good, and the music became what we refer to as mainstream. It became representative of what rock was evolving into and now, if Tyler farts on a microphone, that recording is going to sell millions of copies. Why? Because by learning their craft, writing and performing, shaping and evolving – Aerosmith became a name synonymous with rockin’ and rollin’. Now, you don’t go to see a rock show, you do what I did this past Thursday night. You go see Aerosmith! By saying that, everyone knows you went to see a rock show. You don’t need to describe it; people simply know it was rock and roll.

Now, on the obverse, if you tell people you went to see Air Supply, they know exactly what you got. Without describing it, you saw Air Supply. Hope you had a good time.

So again I ask, what’s in a name? Well, lets change the answer a little bit from the beginning of this article. It’s what you put into it. If you slack off, your name is guaranteed to be synonymous with something that sucks, and people won’t need words to describe it. They’ll just know what it is when someone says your name.

Now, go practice. Your audience is waiting.

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