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Names -> Band Name Origins -> R, Page 2

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 R are split into multiple pages: 1 2 3

There are 4771 Band Name Origin entries on the site.

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Red Hot Chili Peppers RHCP are not the first with that name. Jelly Roll Morton, one of the progenitors of Jazz, released a number of records as Jelly Roll Morton and his Red Hot Chili Peppers. Morton claims to have invented jazz, but he was not alone. Saint52ndStreet
Red Hot Chili Peppers Jelly Roll Morton, a popular early jazz pianist, was the leader of a group called the Red Hot Peppers. They picked this name, added 'Chili' after the restaurant "Chilie Willie", because the name describes their music. Also, it's pretty obvious that chicks and gays would generally know that the name describes the band too! Kyle
Red Hot Chili Peppers Anthony saw it burning in a bush whilst on an acid trip. Seen in: Documentary -Anthony  Who?
Red House 1970s English south coast band. Took their name from the Hendrix song. Originally were called Whipping Post (from the Allman Bros. song). Then changed their name to Quest (from?) Big Tone
Red House Painters the singer Kozelek took the name from a communistic club wich used to go out and "paint the houses red." varould
Red Jumpsuit Apparatus First off, to debunk the posted "orgins" neither Jon nor Elias were in the band when the band name was chosen. The RJA had been around 2 years before they came along. Second, the skydiving theory is also rediculous, when they chose the name not a single member of the RJA could have afforded to pay for skydiving. The name the red jumpsuit apparatus has no real meaning, apart form the fact that it sounded "cool" at the time. Tony D
Red Jumpsuit Apparatus The real reason they got this name the band were standing in front of their refrigerator with a bunch of sticky magnets with words. They blindfolded either Elias or Jon; and they picked three words at random and they came up with this. chip
The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus While the band was skydiving Ronnie Winter(the lead singer) got his jumpsuit caught on the side of the plain, causing his suit to get ripped and made him bleed. His white jumpsuit became red. While in midair this reminded him of his freshman biology teacher who tought him about cells and about the Gollgi apparatus. Ronnie put the words together to make "The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus". BlaH!!
Red Red Groovy Named from the Anthony Burgess novel 'A Clockwork Orange' Bobo
The Red Stick Ramblers A Cajun group from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. They get their name from the fact that "Baton Rouge" is French for "Red SticK". Adrienne Schnell
Redd Kross Originally to be named Red Cross, they faced a lawsuit from the international organisation. They renamed as they thought it looked cooler, I guess. Bobo
Redman Claw is wrong. Back in Newark, NJ, Reggie Noble was a DJ for a group called Lords of the Underground, but he also sold drugs. His "territory" was getting crowded with others crews trying to encroach and steal customers. He and his crew would have to "deal" with them to keep them at bay and protect his "profit". After a while, he "dealt" with so many crews trying to take over, that his friend (a member of Lords of the Underground) said to him one day, "If you keep spilling so much blood like that, they are gonna call you redman." That's why he quit the increasingly violent drug game and focused on rapping and deejaying full time. Square D
Redman Reggie Noble always had a rather light skin although he's African-American. So once when he was a kid, a girl hit him with a snowball right on his cheek and it turned terribly red. That's how he got his rap-name: Redman. Claw
Reef They were heavily influenced by Free, so came up with an anagram as an homage to their heroes. DiscoStu
Reel Big Fish made up by the bass player, matt wong, they all had an obseession with sushi, and this just poked out, the idea was, talked about so it was "big fish" then they added"real" and later on changed it into "reel"  danniel baker
Reel Big Fish Well actually Arron Barret, said in one of his statements on the site that they got the name from a fishing shop in the L.B.C. called Reel Big Fish. As in catching fish not in how hard it is to become famouse. Any real RBF fan should know that.
Reel Big Fish The name is referenced on how your just a little fish in the sea, and it is so hard to not be eaten (or to be famous) but when ever you get the chance, you should reel in a big fish dunk
Refugee The band called REFUGEE formed from the members of the defunct band NICE back in about 1969/70. They took their name by going through the gig lists in the back of the UK paper the Melody Maker. There they picked the name of a band who'd been touring for several years on the semi-pro circuit with the (sadly now deceased) Paul Sanson ( his real name and later of SAMSON fame) on lead guitar, Slim Haines on Drums and Gerry Sherwin on bass guitar. The original (semi-pro) Refugee had totally crap management (A guy called Rick Allchin) who bowed down to the power of the big boys and ex-Nice became REFUGEE. For a while the original refugee toured under the name of Super Vole but because of the name change, their gigs went from 4 and 5 a week to 2 a month tops and the band folded in about 1974. Paul Sanson went on to fame and glory with SAMSON. Gerry Sherwin still gigs with the Kentish Rogues. Slim Haines was seriously injured in a major road accident and is unable to play due to the injuries he sustained. The ex-Nice version of Refugee bombed really badly after their first tour and split up within the year - and serve them right too! Peter Kenwood
Reign This is the quintesential rock band hailing from Pittsburgh. The name came from an off-handed remark after a gig where the groopies were bowing before them band. Scott Schmitt, the vocalist commented that it felt like they were kings and that they Reigned above all. Needless to say, their rocking style and new name propelled them to the top of their genre. Bosephius
Relient K The other definition is right, it's just that it was Matt Hoope's car, not Matt Theissen's. darren
Relient K The band needed a name because they has been booked for a show. The lead singer Matt Tiesen looked out side and saw his Reliant K car made by Plymouth. They took that name and switched the A with an E so they would be origanial. Silas
Relient K The band picked this name because they thought "crappy band, crappy car"; even though they are a great band. But they had issues with the copy right of "Reliant K". So they changed the 'a' to an 'e'. Another option that Matt T thought of was for it to be "Reliant Que"; because at the time they were picking the name, he was a Spanish student. Caroline
Relient K A Relient K is a brand of old car. Aly
Relient K The Band is named after the car, The reliant k. The rythm guitarist, Matt Hoopes, owned one of these bad boys, and it was the butt of many a joke, and eventually, the band dropped the "a" and added the "e" in reliEnt K, so plageurism conflicts would arise.  jaybee
Relient K Named after lead singer Matt Theisen's first car. A Reliant K. The misspelling of Relient (Relient) is because the band wanted there own form of the word. Silas
Relient K They got their name from an old car called a Reliant K. One of the band members use to drive one of those cars and they all laughed about it so they just decided to name the band that. Michelle
Relient K They are named after one of the member's old cars, the Reliant K. jillbob
Relient K Matt Hoopes, the bass player, had the car Reliant K and the band used to make fun of him 'cause it took 15 sec. to get to 60 mph. It all became a big joke so they named their band after it. Murphy
Relocate The band were just sitting round in the drummers bedroom saying random words and 'relocate' came up. Knowone can remeber who said it. Matt H
REM REM may stand for Rapid Eye Movement, but band members have said they chose it "because it sounded cool." J
REM the name rem stands for Rapid Eye Movements, which you aparently have a lot of when you are dreamingso REM is about dreams! abi
REM Abi, you are wrong. The band members of REM saw the letters REM spray painted on a wall and thought it would be cool to use it as their band name. Yes, it does stand for Rapid Eye Movement and in Psychology it is related to dreams, however, in this case it is unrelated to dreams and was simply thought to be a cool name! Jo
REM As recounted in numerous biographies, REM's early gigs, were held in an old church, where some of the bandmembers lived. They got members of the audience to scrawl their ideas for a band name on the wall of the church, and REM was the one they liked best. It had NOTHING to do with Dan Rather, although their song `What's the Frequency, Kenneth?' was written about him. Camille
REM We're aware of the fact that R.E.M. stands for Rapid Eye Movement, but in actual fact the group are named so because they made an appeal, during one of their earliest gigs in Athens, Georgia, for band name suggestions to be graffitied on the wall of the disused church that they were living in at the time, and REM was one of the suggestions (up till this point they had been playing under the name "Twisted Kites"). Abi, it's not clear exactly what you meant, but to say that REM is "about dreams" is perhaps a little simplistic. Read lyrics, not school science textbooks. :) James
Remedy Drive This christian band of four brothers from Lincoln, Nebraska is comprised of David, Philip, Paul and Dan Zach. They formed in the mid 1990's and originally were called The Aslan Band (after the lion in the Narnia books). They soon changed their name to Remedy, alluding to Christ being the only remedy for sin, but heard another band already was using that name. So they lengthened their name to "Remedy Drive" to point to the drive we all have for something to fill the void in our souls. derekthered
REO Speedwagon From a flatbed truck, first built in the early 1900's. REO stood for Ransom Eli Olds, who created the Oldsmobile. oldschool
REO Speedwagon R. E. Olds was born in the Geneva-on-the-Lake area of Northern Ohio. His company made the REO Speedwagon truck which was popular for hauling fire fighting equipment and other things during the late 40s to the early 60s. I saw an REO Speedwagon truck in the Canadian Automotive Museum in Oshawa, Ontario. A placard near the truck explained all this and it also said that the American band took its name from this vehicle. MyWheels Have Turned Towards Oshawa
REO Speedwagon (This is a correction to what's already listed.) From their Behind the Music special Bren
REO Speedwagon In HIgh School the band was in search of a name. When they walked into one of their classes the words REO Speedwagon was written in huge letters across the board. They thought it sounded cool and adopted the name. bribri
REO Speedwagon When Gary Richrath,Terry Lutrell,Alan Gratzer,Neal Doughty,and Gregg Philbin,first put together the rollicking speedwagon,taking the name from the renowned truck and fire engine. Shoe
REO Speedwagon They chose the REO from the southwest Chicago suburbs that they lived in and around: Ridge, Evergreen, and Oak Lawn. The Speedwagon is the s****y van they used to drive around in.  Gobearz5
The Replacements Just to clarify, "the Mats" - the Replacements' nickname - came about because people used to jokingly refer to the band as the Placemats (Replacements/Placemats... har de har har). So 'Mats was short for Placemats, really. Jay
The Replacements  Legend has it that they were given a gig after another band failed to show - when asked who they were they replied "We're the Replacements".  Robert D. Arndt Jr.
The Replacements They were initially named Dogbreath, but after a few drunken gigs in which they had soiled their name (a club owner apparently refused to book them again), they renamed themselves The Replacements (since they were "replacing" Dogbreath) in order to keep getting gigs. They are often nicknamed "The Mats" which is short for "The Placemats" which itself is a nickname for "The Replacements." Chris Mars later said in an interview that after he and Bob Stinson had left (or got fired from) the band, they briefly considered forming a new band called "The Replaced." Mark J
The Replacements Regarding the nickname, "The Mats," lead singer Paul Westerberg once said in an interview that I read they were "The Mats" when they played drunk. Kelli
The Replays Originaly called Radio Replay as the band had heard that a group name with the word Radio in was more likely to be succesful. Shortened to The Replays because it fitted onto the bass drum skin better! tony
Republica It's simple. This amazing UK electronic "techno dance punk rock" band recorded their debut album in Republica studio. 1996 Breakdown
The Residents The band sent an anonymous demo tape to an executive at Warner Brothers in 1972, hoping for a recording contract. The tape was returned later by mail, addressed to "The Residents" at the return address. Hence, a band was born! Agrimorfee
The Residents When the unnamed band sent their first demo tape to the Warner Brothers label, it was returned and addressed to "Residents" at their address. Bill M.
The Residents They used to get so many rejection letters, that some were addressed to resident. The name stuck Henk
Rethakul Veets Short-lived 80s side project of Steve Lukather from Toto. It is actually "Steve Lukather" spelled (partly) backwards.  Ugo C.
Revolting Cocks The band used to cause trouble in local bars, and they were thrown out one time and the guy called them "a bunch of Revolting Cocks" (See 1000 Homo Djs) Bill
Revolting Cocks Al Jourgenson's side project were being rather raucous at a bar once. One of the bouncers kicked them out, yelling after them that they were nothing but a bunch of revolting cocks. vacuum kitty
RFS This Sacramento garage band's acronym stands for Romance Forever Strong (Editor: I'm not accepting anymore entries about this band until I have confirmation they exist.) Robert D. Arndt Jr.
Rick Rock Yes his real name! Solo recording artist from Ontario, Canada. Birth certificate reads Richard Rock. Rick Rock
Ricky and the Redstreaks During an interview with the Beatles, one of them stated that they sometimes dreamed about "just hitting the road" and playing in pubs and saloons under the name "Ricky and the Redstreaks" or something. As an homage to the Beatles, the Redstreaks were formed. Redstreak Drummer Fan
Ricky Martin Abraham Gutiérrez is right, but Ricky Martin changed his name when joined Menudo. There was a Ricky Melendez, before him, so they called him Ricky too. Hanna
Ricky Martin Risky is a short form of his name Enrique. Martin is his actual middle name. HE let go of his surname "Morales". hirnakshi joshi
Ricky Martin His real name is: Enrique Martin Morales (IV). But since a kid everybody call him: Kiki. Kiki is not a good word in some place ("I just don't wanna be called 'p*ssy'" -he said) so when he started his solo career they decided to change "Kiki" for "Ricky" that sounds similar. Because the real short name for Enrique is Quique, not Ricky. Abraham Gutiérrez
Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder Ricky skaggs was in the process of writing a song when he went to a festival in kentucky. it was thundering and lightning really bad so he got the name for the song "kentucky thunder". eventually. he went on to name his album that and eventually his touring band Jeremy Chambers
Riddlin' Kids They were orginally IGMO (ignorant motherf*cker) but when the brother of one of the members left, he took the name. They then became Ritalin Kids and would get up and act like they needed Ritalin. When they didn't want to face law suits due to the fact Ritalin is copyrighted, they changed it to Riddlin' Kids, which sounds like the old one and works megan
Riddlin' Kids Contrary to what was said earlier, Riddlin' Kids said JOKINGLY in an interview that the name meant that they went completely insane on stage and seemed like they needed Ritalin, but said immediately after that that was a joke and the name actually refers to people who tell riddles. Robbie N.
Right Said Fred After Bernard Cribbins 1962 top-ten-hit "Right Said Fred". Richard and Fred Fairbrass confirmed this in several interviews.The song is about three guys shifting a piano. Bernard Cribbinssings with accompaniment directed by Johnnie Spence. Words and Music by Rudge-Dicks. This informastion is from a record called "Just for Laughs" by EMI. Bernhard Hausner
Right Said Fred After Bernard Cribbins' 1962 top-ten-hit "Right Said Fred". Richard and Fred Fairbrass confirmed this in several interviews. Cade Sinclair
Right Said Fred This was indeed the title of a Bernard Cribbins hit. It's also a play on the names of the brothers who front the band, Richard and Fred ("Richard" sounds a bit like "Right Said"... not a lot, I grant you, but just enough). Jenny Turner
Right Said Fred It was from a song by Bernard Cribbins, a children's TV 'entertainer'. It's about two guys shifting a piano.  Lawrence of Her Labia
Right Said Fred UNCONFIRMED : This is actually the name of a 1962 top 10 single by Bernard Cribbins. Bobo
Right Said Fred I saw on VH1 was the hook of a scottish or irish novelty drinking song.. the song would have several long verses but always go back to "And right said fred..." amanda
The Righteous Brothers they were singing in a bar down south and at the end of their set one of the patrons came up to them and said ,you boys sing great ,you are righteous brothers,so they decided to call themselves that and the rest is history.  ghost
The Righteous Brothers When the duo performed in front of a group of black U.S. Marines, one of the Marines shouted "That's righteous, Brothers!"  oldsongs
Rigor Mortis Rigor mortis is the name for the stiffening of death, which sets in shortly after someone dies.  Colin
Rilo Kiley Nobody knows. Every time the band gets asked in an interview or something, they make up really obsurd stories. Like once they said it was about two gay teens who killed themselves after they couldn't go to the prom together.  Micha
The Ritchie Family Named after the record producer Ritchie Rome, the founder of the band. Dylan Baranski
Rjd2 The Definitive Jux producer supremo got stuck with a bastardisation of the R2D2 character is Star Wars, after former Columbus buddies observed a very vague similarity in the first two initials of his name Ramble Jon (Khron), whilst 'space age' bleeps characterised a fair proportion of his full length debut 'Deadringer'. Luke Hamilton-Wargent
RMC and the Acevedo Naysayers The name is a reference to former Detroit Tigers relief pitcher Juan Acevedo. Robert Nesta
Roaming Bovine I talked to the guy from this band. He said the name came from a tattoo he once saw on a stripper's thigh. Unfortunately he didn't seem to know where that stripper got the phrase from. Jamie D.
Roaming Bovine The singer/guitarist and his friend were driving in the middle of nowhere and a cow was walking around off the side of the road, and his friend exclaimed, "Look, roaming bovine." Yep, that's the real story.  Jon
The Rob Benhart Experience In a suburb in Pittsburgh, the three members went to a concert put on by Rob Benhart and his band. The three members of The Rob Benhart Experience were so enthralled by the performance that they named their band after him. John Starkley
Rob Zombie I read in an on-line interview that he named himself after Bob, the zombie from "Day of the Dead". Josh Bain
Rob Zombie His real name was robert cummings and he was really into horror flicks so he chose a cool sounding last name instead zombie lover
Robot On Robot Violence Lead guitarist and singer Jessie asked her brother to help them come up with a name and he said "Some kind of robot on robot violence. Nothing's funnier than robots stabbing each other." Junesong Revision
Rodgau Monotones The name came from their hometown in Germany, Rodgau near Frankfurt.  Henrik
Rolling Stones Remember, at its core, 'rock and roll' is about sex. Always has been, always will be, gods willing. In England, "rolling your stones" means the same as "getting your rocks off". Stones/Rocks=testicles. It's a reference to masturbation or sex itself, i.e. It can also be interpreted as a statement of virility. The "Stones" were trying to make a crude sexual innuendo that the kids would get but subtle enough the parents would miss. Ticking off authority was what they lived for. "Never trust anyone over 30" - Jagger Spyke Payan
The Rolling Stones Stonesfan is confusing The Temptations song "Papa Was a Rolling Stone" (where the lyrics he quotes are from) with- Muddy Waters' Rollin' Stone " He's gonna be, he's gonna be a rollin stone, Sure 'nough, he's a rollin stone" It is where the band got their name, but "Papa was a Rolling Stone" was released in 1972 and the Stones 1st used their name in 1962.  Mark Silverman
The Rolling Stones Named after the Muddy Waters' song "Rolling Stone Blues". Also, based on a saying that "A rolling stone gathers no moss." rockgroup
Rolling Stones The Rolling Stones took their name from a Muddy Waters song that went " papa was a rollin' stone..." Founder Brian Jones had several illegitimate children and the song by blues legend Muddy moved him with it's lyrics about a struggling father who said "wherever he laid his hat was his home". Mick Jagger and Keith Richards joined and they added the "g" when they got signed as the Rolling Stones. Sources - 2 biographies "Stone Alone" & "Old Gods Almost Dead" stonesfan
Rolling Stones The saying "A rolling stone gathers no moss" reflects the rock n roll lifestyle of rolling and partying from town to town on tour, so the "Stones" part corresponds to "rock" music, while the "Rolling" part captures the associated lifestyle. In their song "Tumbling Dice" we hear Jagger sing "keep on rolling". If "moss" is seen as symbolizing negativity, then the philosophy is avoiding negativity by staying on the move. Major Bliss
The Rolling Stones Actually, both The Rolling Stones(band) and The Rolling Stone(magazine) got their names from an old Muddy Waters song called "Rollin' Stone" Also, this song was voted the number one greatest song of all time by The Rolling Stone(magazine) in their "Top 500 greatest songs of all time" list. - John, nowhere, Sweden  dave
Rolling Stones The Rolling Stones definitely got their name from the Muddy Waters' song. It has nothing to do with masturbation or the saying "A rolling stone gathers no moss." Sidenote: Rolling Stone actually named Bob Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone" the #1 song of all time, not Muddy Water's "Rollin' Stone". andrew
Ronny Morris Band Before Ron Wood played with the Rolling Stones he owned a club in Miami. Jim Morrison of the Doors used to come in and party with Ron, when they would get loose enough they would join the band on stage and jam. Sometimes they would tell the patrons that they were locking the doors at closing time and jam until daylight and anyone that wanted to leave better go now. Everyone always stayed. Donny's father who worked as bouncer for a while, used to tell that story and they decided to call the band the Ronny Morrison Band. When Bill Spell fell ill from drug abuse in 1995 and Chicago Ed joined them, they shortened the name to Ronny Morris Band. Debbie
Ronny Morris Band The band was originally called Gladstone. The band didn't actually pick out the name. The way that happened was the manager of a club that they often played at up in Georgia called Esthers Lounge, changed the marquis to Ronny Morris Band, because someone had misplaced, lost or stolen the G letters for the marquis. When the band arrived for the show, they asked why the Marquis didn't say Gladstone. The manager said that people were always calling, or customers in the club were always asking when is Ronny's band going to play again. The manager said that most people called them Ronny's band anyway, so he put Ronny Morris Band on the Marquis because it was the closest he could come to a reference to the band without using G for Gladstone. The bassist Bill Spell said we might as well just call the band The Ronny Morris band as Ronny sang lead, played lead guitar and harmonica and wrote all of the songs, the band agreed, Ronny said "why not" and from that time on they were known as the Ronny Morris Band. That's his real name given to him by birth, so the real answer is the band decided to call it the Ronny Morris Band after the deal with the marquis at Esthers Lounge. By the way, the song Esthers Lounge Mama that is on the Tribute To Nate album, was written about a woman that frequented that club. Her name was never revealed by Ronny and it became a bit of a mystery and much controversy spawned on by the radio station dj's as to who the "mama" actually was. I talked to Ronny personally about that and he said that he and only one other person knew the name of the lady and that it will forever remain a secret.  Barbara Stokes
Roo'Ra Roots of Reggae Robert D. Arndt Jr.
Rooney Originally named Ed Rooney, the principal from the movie 'Ferris Bueller's Day Off'. Lauren
Rooster The band settled on the name Rooster when bandmember Nick came home £250 richer after putting a bet on a horse called Rooster Booster.  PM
Roper the last name of reese roper. who was a member of five iron frenzy and brave Saint Saturn.  john
Roxette It was a title of a song by Dr. Feelgood, a favorite band of the duo's Per Gessle. pop
Roxy Music Roxy Music was originally called Roxy, naming themselves after a local movie theater. They added the "music" to their name once they realized there was an American band calling themselves Roxy. Bobo
Royksopp Norwegian band it means puffball. When you step on it, it bursts into a cloud of spores. Also the cloud that appears after the explosion of a nuclear bomb Royk means cloud, sopp means mushroom. This has clearly got a link to drugs, and that is why they chose it. Lukaso
Rozz Williams Experimental Death Rock singer of Shadow Project, Christian Death, and about ten trillion other projects. Born Roger Alan Painter; decided to take the name " Rozz Williams " off of a headstone in his favorite graveyard. Kaenan
RPWL RPWL is a German progressive rock band. The band's name comes from the first letters of the original four members; Phil Paul Rissettio, Chris Postl, Karlheinz Wallner, and Yogi Lang. If you like Pink Floyd, you will like RPWL! Professor Incubus

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