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Tony Iommi:  A guitarist whose name is iconic as his playing.  It’s a good thing he didn’t have to change it like Black Sabbath changed their name.

Some of rock’s biggest bands, of course, had to go through several monikers until they found just the right one.  In honor of Iommi’s birthday (February 19), here are eleven original band names we’re glad didn’t stick.

 

The Polka Tulk Blues Band (Black Sabbath)

Black Sabbath’s original name came from the brand name of a talcum powder Ozzy Osbourne’s mother used.  Yeah…definitely not as dark as Black Sabbath.

Rat Salad (Van Halen)

Awesome Black Sabbath song, but it’s not the best band name.  Plus, without the Van Halen band name, we wouldn’t have their classic band logo, which is easily one of the coolest logos to rock on a shirt ever.

 

Mookie Blaylock (Pearl Jam)

One of the best athlete names of all time?  Of course!  A great band name?  Not exactly.  Eddie Vedder once said the band that would become Pearl Jam were too busy writing music to come up with a band name.  We’re thankful for the great music, but we’re equally as thankful for the name change, even if there are some sticky rumors behind that name’s origin, too.

 

The New Yardbirds (Led Zeppelin)

Fact:  Nearly every “new” version of a previously well-respected brand is always crap.  (Ex: “New” Coke.)  Definitely thankful for this name change.

 

Rocket Baby Dolls (Muse)

One of the biggest bands in the world was once named after a Japanese porno movie.  Smart change, lads!

 

Screaming Abdabs (Pink Floyd)

“Screaming Abdabs” is apparently slang for “extreme anxiety or nervousness.”  We’re sure many record companies would’ve been nervous as to how to market a band with that name.

Sweet Children (Green Day)

It’s not like Sweet Children is a bad name; the problem lies within when the band members age.  Think about pop groups like New Kids on the Block or Backstreet Boys.  When you’re old enough to qualify for an AARP membership, a name that signifies youth is just silly.

 

Tony Flow and the Miraculously Majestic Masters of Mayhem (Red Hot Chili Peppers)

Good lord! There are no words. Why? The Chili Peppers seemingly used all of them in that terrible attempt at a band name.

Pud (Doobie Brothers)

Out of all slang terms for male genitalia, this one is definitely the least sexy and whimsical. Way to opt for a weed-based name!

 

Cans of Piss (R.E.M.)

For a moment, imagine “Shiny Happy People” by a band called Cans of Piss. Ugh…just awful!

 

 

Naked Toddler (Creed)

Saving the absolute worst for last.  Regardless of your feelings about Creed, imagine a song as poignant as “With Arms Wide Open” by a band named NAKED TODDLER!  Actually, never mind. Just don’t.

Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock blogger that loves the smell of old vinyl in the morning.

Erica Banas is rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.