21 Band Names Based on TV Shows
You know how you occasionally hear an awesome turn of phrase and immediately think, “That would make the best band name? These people did the same thing, but the difference between us and them is that they actually went on to name a band. Check out these 21 band names inspired by a little quality time flipping channels from the couch.
1. Evergreen Terrace
Alex Meagher, Flickr // CC BY NC-2.0
A metalcore band named after the street on which everyone’s favorite Springfieldian family lives. Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie live at 742 Evergreen Terrace.
2. Fall Out Boy
via Getty Images
The “Sugar We’re Goin’ Down” band is named after—yes—Fallout Boy, a minor character in The Simpsons. But it’s not because the guys in the band were such Matt Groening fans; they didn’t even get the reference when they adopted the name. The nameless band was in the middle of their second show when they decided to poll the audience for name ideas. A Simpsons fan shouted the name of Radioactive Man’s sidekick, and the band liked it.
3. I Voted For Kodos
Bridget Maniaci, Flickr // CC BY ND-2.0
OK, one last Simpsons reference. A now-defunct ska band named themselves after a quote in Treehouse of Horror VII. Aliens Kang and Kodos take over Earth and declare themselves the new presidential candidates. Kang wins and immediately enslaves the human race. Here's how that ends:
4. The Anti-Dentites
This Connecticut-based band pays tribute to the famous Bryan Cranston episode of Seinfeld.
5. Betty's Not a Vitamin
Named after one of the biggest marketing oversights in history, Paste magazine called these guys one of the best-named bands of all time.
6. Eve’s Plum
Before she was Vitamin C (and Amber Von Tussle, for that matter), Colleen Fitzpatrick was in a band called Eve’s Plum, a tip of the hat to Ms. Jan Brady herself, Eve Plumb.
7. Marsha Brady
Mike McCall, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Of course, Marcia’s always there to steal Jan’s spotlight—although this Cincinnati cover band either wasn’t interested in exact spelling or wanted to sidestep pesky copyright laws.
8. Johnny Bravo
But wait, there’s more Brady Bunch! Remember the episode where Greg moonlights as a teen idol named Johnny Bravo? So does this Ohio cover band.
9. The Banana Convention
Greg Brady sure had a lot of near-misses in the music industry. He also had a garage band called “The Banana Convention,” which sounded pretty good to this group from Saginaw, MI. They are, self-described, “a happy sounding Paramore meets No Doubt, with a splash of Weezer.”
10. Ned’s Atomic Dustbin
cormac70, Flickr // CC BY NC-ND-2.0
Here’s one for the Brits. An episode of The Goon Show, a British radio comedy show, is what inspired the name of Ned’s Atomic Dustbin. You may have heard their version of the Bay City Rollers’ “Saturday Night” in So I Married an Axe Murderer.
11. Does It Offend You, Yeah?
Schröder+Schömbs PR _ Brands | Media | Lifestyle, Flickr // CC BY ND-2.0
Sounds like a controversial statement, but the lead singer of the band says the name was actually just a quote from the ever-offensive David Brent on the British version of The Office:
Everybody thinks the name is some kind of statement but it's a quote from David Brent in an episode of The Office. When me and James [Rushent] first started writing music together we decided to put it up on MySpace. We needed a name to put as our profile name so just put what was the first thing that was said on TV, we switched it on and Ricky Gervais said 'Does it offend you, yeah? My drinking?' so we just went with that. No thought went into it whatsoever.
12. Chigliak Records
OK, technically this one isn’t a band, but still worth a mention. Justin Vernon of Bon Iver is such a fan of Northern Exposure that they honored the film buff character Ed Chigliak with a namesake record label. Vernon said,
Honestly, before I settled on a name for the Bon Iver project in general, Chigliak was in the running for what I was going to name the band, just because I love him so much. He’s my favorite in the pantheon of characters in the history of the world. So I was, like, "Well, that’s the best name for the label.’"He just represents the best of art. In the show, he’s penpals with Martin Scorsese, he’s a big film buff and he’s sort of a representation of what we’re trying to do at the label: like good music that may not be box office-smashing. We want to try to spread some of the music that maybe didn’t get out enough the first time around.
13. Eve 6
Joshua Smelser, Flickr // CC BY NC-ND-2.0
More sci-fi fans in the music business. The band’s name refers to an episode of The X-Files where genetically engineered woman are named “Eves” and genetically engineered men are called “Adams.” One of the Eves was named Eve 6, which drummer Tony Fagenson thought would make for a pretty cool band name.
14. Killswitch Engage
Andreh Santo, Flickr // CC BY ND-2.0
Eve 6 isn’t the only band inspired by Mulder and Scully. The metalcore band chose their name after watching an X-Files episode called “Kill Switch” written by cyberpunk novelist William Gibson. (He’s the guy who coined the term “cyberspace,” by the way.)
15. The Bloodhound Gang
Children of the ‘80s may remember that “The Bloodhound Gang” was the name of a skit on the PBS show 3-2-1 Contact. “They were a group of nerdy kids that solved crimes with math puzzles,” the band's guitarist, Lupus Thunder, explained in 2000. “It just made sense. We were a rap band so we needed to have a cool ‘tough’ sounding name, hence the ‘gang’. But deep down inside we're a bunch of nerds who should be doing math puzzles and playing Dungeons and Dragons or something similar. So the name just fits. Plus, the reference to the old ‘80s TV show shows what we're all about.”
Nicole Kibert, Flickr // CC BY NC-ND-2.0
This "spazzcore band" took its name from last episode of The Monkees, “The Frodis Caper.” The Frodis, apparently, was a being from another planet that resembles a one-eyed philodendron with a football-shaped eye.
17. Ookla the Mok
Michael Pereckas, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Who remembers Thundarr the Barbarian? It was a Saturday morning cartoon that ran in the early ‘80s, and while it may not have had a profound effect on most of us, it definitely influenced Ookla the Mok. Ookla the Mok was a Wookiee-like character who traveled the world with Thundarr, battling evil sorcerers. “But what do they sing?” you’re probably wondering. Here’s a little sample: “Tantric Yoda” was the #1 requested song on the Dr. Demento radio show in 2012. If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to be seduced by Yoda, wonder no more.
18. Das Racist
Dave Lichterman, Flickr // CC BY NC-ND-2.0
The irreverent rappers named themselves after a clip on a now-defunct show on MTV2 called Wonder Showzen. According to MC Himanshu Suri,
I think being minorities at a liberal arts college and that type of environment had an impact on both the way we view race and our sense of humor, which people often use as a tool to deal with race. I always felt like Wonder Showzen was a television show that captured that type of thing perfectly. When I saw the little kid yelling "THAT'S RACIST" it blew my mind. And then it became a game...to take all the seriousness out of making legitimate commentary on race, because that can get very annoying. So when something veering on racially insensitive would pop off in a commercial on television or something it would be like, who could yell "That's Racist" first. And then we thought it would be a cool name.
19. Minus the Bear
Nicole Kibert, Flickr // CC BY NC-ND-2.0
An indie band from Seattle, Minus the Bear was inspired by a sitcom from the ‘70s that featured a truck driver and his escapades with his pet chimp named Bear. Someone who was friends with the band had gone on a date, and when asked how the date went, he said, “You know 'You know that TV show from the 70s, B.J. and The Bear? It was like that, minus the bear.” And someone in the band probably said, “That would make an awesome band name,” and then it was so.
20. The Number 12 Looks Like You
This grindcore/progressive metal/hardcore punk/jazz band was named after a Twilight Zone episode. In the episode, the members of a future (ahem, the year 2000, cue Conan) society undergo an operation at the age of 18 to become beautiful and can choose from just a handful of various models.
21. Crystal Castles
The Canadian duo took their name from She-Ra, although technically it was inspired by a commercial for a She-Ra toy. The ad was hawking She-Ra’s Crystal Castle and, the band says, said that “The Crystal Castle is the source of all power,” and “The fate of the world is safe in Crystal Castle.” I wonder if it was this one:
Who'd we leave out besides Toad the Wet Sprocket?