In this day and age it’s become more important than ever for an artist to have an online presence. For people not yet overly familiar with your outlets or output the gateway to your online presence is of course a search machine, probably the ubiquitous Google. Recording under a name that’ll churn out a zillion other results before yours is probably not a sound business move, but it’s something these five almost impossible to google artists did anyway. Peep disadvantaged game.
Mos Def has arguably one of the greatest and most recognizable monikers in rap, ever. Earlier this year he decided to change his government name to Yasiin and plans to have his stage name follow that same route in 2012. The decision was mostly informed by his religious beliefs and there’s definitely nothing intrinsically wrong with the name Yasiin. The letters ‘Ya’ and ‘Sin’ in Arabic writing refer to the 36th chapter of the Qur’an and the prophet Muhammad even referred to it as “the Heart of the Qur’an”in a hadith. Not too shabby an origin for a first name, but as a result it’s also pretty common in the Arabic world and among Muslims worldwide. So as a stage name it’s far from distinct, for somebody in an Arabic or North-African country it would sound the same as naming yourself ‘Pete’ or ‘John’ does to Anglic ears. Expect to run into a lot of random social media profiles running a search for that name. Not the best marketing plan.
Let’s play a word association game. Close your eyes. Clear your mind. Here we go: ‘Fiend.’ What was it? Rhyme fiend? If you’re an old head perhaps ‘Microphone Fiend?’ In all probabilty it’s ‘dope fiend.’ But while all these terms apply in some form or another to the old No Limit soldier turned J.E.T.S. veterean none specifically target him. Run a search on the word and you’ll most likely stumble into Tyrone Biggums territory that has nothing to do with the smooth baritone of International Jones. So that second moniker is a welcome addition that not only fits his recent renaissance to a t but also makes his recent mixtape a lot easier to find.
3. Remy Martin
The cognac brand Rémy Martin was founded by (guess who) Rémy Martin in 1724. It still endures as a high-end brand of cognac protected by the Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée and is sold worldwide but never for cheap. To say it’s a strong brand is a bit of an understatement. Good luck competing with that if you’re a second-string crew member to two litterally huge rap stars (well, one managed to loose that weight this year) who’s biggest claim to fame was getting married in jail and her role in a music video where she pushed a dude’s face in her crotch. ‘Lean Back’ was a hit record worldwide but I doubt the world will still purchase it over 300 years from now. She did loose the ‘rtin’ eventually to make her name more distinctive but that also pretty much negated the high class aesthetic the name was meant to embody in the first place. Then again, nothing says ‘high class’ better than some enforced oral sex while driving anyway, now does it?
2. (The) Game
You know, for a guy that’s enamored with dropping names he sure choose a pretty crappy one for himself. But with Dr. Dre riding shotgun and confidently putting the resurrection of The West on your shoulders picking a bad nom-de-plume won’t stop people from checking for you. An extremely common word like ‘Game’ will give you tons of hits online, especially when people regularly playing videogames, which is only the highest grossing part of the entertainment industry worldwide, are overrepresented among those active on the web as well. But Jayceon Taylor was smart enough to preface it with a ‘The,’ making his name a bit more specified and adding some fittingly grandiose allure to it; he wasn’t here to change the game, he was The Game. That is, until he dropped the first word of his name and thusly attained the most generic name in the rap game: Game. #Facepalm.
“Damn mom, quit creeping up on me, I was just trying to listen to a Roots song, honest! Sheesh, that lube is just there cause I had some dry skin, quit bothering me!”