It’s a question that crosses our minds every time we first hear of a new artist with a weird name – “what kind of name is that?” Below is a list of a few of the most interesting DJ names and their origins!
This DJ’s dad came up with his name when his son was 12 years old, “My original Dutch name is Robbert van de Corput, and if you translate ‘Corput’ in English you get ‘Hardwell’! So my name in English is ‘Robert Hardwell’”. Robbert had to register the domain for his website, and picked DJHardwell.com. “That’s how it started, and I never changed the name”, Hardwell says.
Not actually because he eats everything, but because he chows down and likes a lot of music. Daniel Pearce, aka Eats Everything, admitted to Westword: “I eat a lot and I play everything. It’s a stupid name. I don’t eat everything. I’ve been asked a million times and I’m just now realizing how much I don’t eat – I’m quite picky… But I do eat a lot of certain things. There’s a modicum of truth in it”.
According to Tim Bergling (Avicii), his DJ name means the lowest level of Buddhist hell. He chose “Avicii” when he found that his real name was already taken upon creating his MySpace page.
One day, Joel Zimmerman (Deadmau5) found a dead mouse inside his computer when upgrading the video card. He adopted the name “deadmouse” after people started calling him the “dead mouse guy” but there was one problem: internet chatrooms didn’t allow that many characters! so he had to shorten it to “Deadmau5”
Above & Beyond
The trance-trio stumbled upon their iconic name when hanging out in Jono Grant’s studio before submitting a remix. They had just finished a remix when they realized they didn’t have a name for the track. Tony McGuinness looked around Jono’s room and saw a piece of computer paper printed off the internet posted above his bed. Jono had typed his name into a search engine and come across a motivational guru whose slogan was ‘above and beyond’. They used the name for that specific mix to Warner Music and as the work kept pouring in, the name stuck.
Australian electro duo of Rob Swire and Gareth McGrillen (Knife Party), two members from the band “Pendulum”, were desperate need of a name that wasn’t linked to their former band. The name “Knife Party” camefrom a Deftones song of the same name. Funnily enough, some people complained that it supported knife crime. Rob Swire hit back with: “…we’re not advocating any type of knife-related crime any more than Swedish House Mafia were advocating organized crime”.
Nick Leonardus van de Wall is the real name of “Afrojack”. A cool name, but maybe not the greatest stage name. The Dutch producer claims that his artist name was derived from his former hairdo and a style of dancing. Nick had a massive fro when he was younger and combined with the style of dancing called “jacking”, gave him the inspiration for his DJ name “Afrojack”.
Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo are better known as the robotically dressed duo ‘Daft Punk’. The two were originally part of a rock group called Darlin’. Their band had gotten a negative review in a now discontinued music magazine called ‘Melody Maker’, which dismissed their tracks as “daft punky thrash”. When the band disbanded, Thomas and Guy-Manuel began experimenting with drum machines and synthesizers and ‘Daft Punk’ was born!