The Top 10 Misspelled Band Names
When the whole cheeky-misspelling nonsense started in the Sixties, it was cute, inspiring names like the Monkees, the Byrds, the Cyrkle and the Human Beinz.
And after all, the psychedelic era brought with it certain liberties. It wasn’t until the Eighties that the whole misspelling idea began spiraling out of control, when hair-metal bands started twisting up their names with extra letters, missing letters, backward letters, random lowercasing and overzealous umlauting. Years later, nü-metal acts (who couldn’t even spell their own genre properly) mucked things up beyond all recognition.
The confusion kept editors proofreading at their cubicles well into the night, and sent graphic designers prone to ducking deadlines out to even longer lunches. The bad news is, given today’s txt-msg and e-mail trends, we may B n 4 sum dp sht.
Mercyful Fate: Frankly, they don’t spell all that well in Denmark, adding extra s’s and n’s the way they do. But inserting a y where an i should go, no matter how cool it seems in theory, is just plain silly. And since “silly” isn’t a word we’d associate with Mercyful Fate, we’re guessing this is merely an accidental misspelling.
Ratt, Stryper, Enuff Z’Nuff, Kix, Tuff, Megadeth, Mötley Crüe, Jackyl, Wild Boyz, Trixter: The extra-hold hair spray, the equipment-flattering spandex, the fist-pumping choruses, the ejaculatory solos — ill-spelled band names were just wedges cut from the same block of cheese. Extra-sharp white cheddar, maybe? OK, maybe Megadeth don't quite belong with this bunch ...
Redd Kross: The MacDonald brothers wrote songs with titles like “Tatum O’Tot and the Fried Vegetables” and “Ghandi Is Dead (I’m the Cartoon Man).” And you’re telling me they couldn’t come up with a name that steered clearer of copyright infringement?
Lynyrd Skynyrd: Can you imagine how much BS the band faced from the marketing department when they signed to MCA in 1973? A lot. They even had to title their first album phonetically (Pronounced Leh-Nerd Skin-Nerd) to avoid any confusion. They sure hated that gym teacher.
Nü Metallers Trapt, Staind, Puddle of Mudd, Korn, Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit: Superfluous z’s and irrelevant k’s have made frequent appearances in nü-metal names, which may help to explain the superfluous and irrelevant assault the genre inflicted on rock guitar playing.
Stone Poneys: I don’t care how cute this may look — there’s simply no excuse for breaking one of the cardinal rules of elementary-school grammar. Just think of the damage this heinous misspelling did to the poor children of the ’60s. Oh, wait, they were already smoking pot by then anyway. Nevermind.
Black Crowes: Rich and Chris Robinson used to be bare-fisted bad boys, which might explain why they threw an e in our faces at the end of “Crows.” No, these rebels weren’t to be confused with those Crows of the Counting variety! Unfortunately, no letter in the alphabet will change the bland image of the band’s mascot, or, for that matter, their bland late-period rock.
Weezer: Why asthmatic geek-punker Rivers Cuomo forgot the h in his band’s name is beyond us. Apparently, you don’t need a high verbal on your SAT to get into Harvard after all.
Led Zeppelin: Which brings us to the dirigible itself. If the Who’s Keith Moon had written, rather than quipped, to Pagey that the proposed name for the guitarist’s new group — “The New Yardbirds” — would “go over like a lead balloon,” he would have spelled it just that way: l-e-a-d. I’ll bet my collection of nü metal on it.
Def Leppard: Joe Elliott had it right the first time, back in 1975, when he initially christened his band “Deaf Leopard.” The loathsome lettering arose later to mimic the spelling of Def Leppard’s favorite band: Led Zeppelin.