Lynn Verlayne Studio / Blog

How to Choose an Artist Name...

**reblogged from lynnverlaynestudio.wordpress.com** A lot of my artists struggle with choosing an artist name. It can be really tough. Often they feel disconnected or artificial about choosing a name that is strange to them.

Don’t you wonder what triggered the moment where Alicia became “Keys”, and Lizzy Grant became “Lana Del Rey”, for instance? What makes a name stick with an artist and makes them feel good about it? We all know how important it is for an artist’s brand to have a strong name, but it’s also important that the artist can be comfortable and identify with the name. I tell my artists a good idea is to somehow find a way to connect with your new name: whether it’s a childhood hero or your great grandmother’s middle name, or just a “concept” you believe in and relate to.

Then you can just come up with several options and try living with it for a few days to a few weeks. Test it out with friends, tell new people you meet this is your name and just see how it feel. Does it make you cringe when you mention people your new name or does it somehow “fit”? Also, how does this new name “feel”? Can you tell by just the way it sounds, what brand is potentially connected to it and what type of music? Does it stand out in the ITunes charts?

Sometimes my artists ask me if they can’t just keep their real name. I tell them it depends on the genre of music they are in and their brand. If you are a pop artist with a strong edge, “John Reynolds” will most likely not do it.

It’s also in your benefit to come up with something that will stick.

Sometimes you get lucky. My singer-songwriter Harrison Nida, (his real name) is one of them. Just “HARRISON” is a dream-like name for a singer-songwriter in his genre. So it really depends. It’s important to not be scared and to really have fun with it and step out of your comfort zone. Keep in mind: it’s fun to be able to shed your skin and start over as a new persona. It’s all about stepping out of your safety zone.

Welcome to Lynn Verlayne Studio!

Hi and welcome! Here's a bit about me. I knew from a young age that one day I would go to New York City to pursue my musical dreams. I moved when I was 19, with just two suitcases in my hands. During my first few years in New York, I surfed from couch to couch, playing gigs locally and writing my early material. Because I couldn’t afford a piano, my friend would sneak me into Columbia Medical School, where I could practice on Rachmaninoff’s concert piano (which had been donated to the school after he passed away). Locking myself in there for days, I wrote the songs that would me on my record, Drifter. The album was released by SONY in my native Belgium, leading to great reviews and lots of press, radio, and TV buzz. I continued working as an independent songwriter/producer, releasing the songs “Boo Boom” and “Peter Pan”, which spent several weeks on the Italian charts.

Now, in addition to co-writing the album "Nite People" with DJ Buscemi (which reached #7 on the Belgian charts!) I am busy writing and producing from her home studio in Brooklyn, both as a solo artist and together with major label and independent songwriters, including many of the young singer-songwriters I develop through my branding and creative development company, Lynn Verlayne Studio.