It’s all in the name

The Beatles
Credit: Wikimedia

I WAS watching Vintage TV recently and it featured music from the 60’s and 70’s as it often does on a Friday night, and I realised that although the Americans are really big in naming bands after actual locations in the US, the Brits have always gone out of their way to avoid it.

I also realised how sad I am for watching Vintage TV every Friday.

The Yanks have the likes of Chicago, Boston and even the grand, all encompassing title of America in the US lexicon of group names, not to mention: New York Dolls; Kansas; Ohio Players and Detroit Spinners amongst others.

I suppose it’s understandable when you look at the names of British towns and cities.  Somehow Bournemouth, South Shields and Ramsbottom don’t seem to lend themselves to the naming of an alcohol, drug and sex fuelled band from the rock and roll netherworld.

You just might get away with Pratts Bottom if you are a heavy metal outfit, but it’s borderline.

There was only one English band of any consequence I can recall that stuck its head above the parapet and gave itself a place name, although I have to say, ASIA is a bit of a cop out when you have to go to the other side of the world for inspiration.

Sure we have had Portishead (a place near Bristol) who enjoyed a degree of success.  But they were from the 90’s, so don’t really count.

And can you believe The Leyton Buzzards who had one minor hit in the 70’s with ‘Saturday Night’.

Remember it?  No me neither.

Scotland is the home of Glasgow based band Texas, which to the best of my knowledge is not an area in that city.  Still, The Gorbals or Pollokshields would have perhaps sounded a tad un-cool, so good luck to them I say.

In recent times the Yanks have even had the gall to form a band called Halifax.  Halifax!   And they are not even from the other Halifax in Canada let alone Yorkshire, but from Thousand Oaks, California for goodness sake.

How did we let that one slip through our fingers?

English groups took the pop world by storm during those heady 60’s days, but I can’t help wondering if things might have been different if instead of The Rolling Stones, Beatles and Kinks, the names of Dartford Tunnel, The Wavertree Four and Muswell Hill had been adopted.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

We welcome comments from readers on our website and across our social networks. We invite you to discuss issues and share your views and we encourage robust debate and criticism provided it is civil.

However we reserve the right to reject or edit comments that:

• Contain offensive language
• Include personal attacks of any kind
• Are likely to offend or target any ethnic, racial, nationality or religious group
• Are homophobic, transphobic, sexist, offensive or obscene
• Contain spam or include links to other sites
• Are clearly off topic
• Impersonate an individual or organisation, are fraudulent, defamatory of any person, threatening or invasive of another’s privacy or otherwise illegal
• Are trolling or threatening
• Promote, advertise or solicit the sale of any goods or services

You grant us a non-exclusive, royalty-free, perpetual, worldwide licence to republish any material you submit to us, without limitation, in any format.