How DO you pick a group name?

How do you pick a name for a chamber group? This week’s primary task is finally christening our wonderful wind quintet (which has been running for over a year now). However, the task is proving to be a difficult one.

The wind quintet I am in was formed last year from a mix of people I know from my year and the year above in college, and though I was their third choice of clarinettist for the group, I fitted in with the silly, fun-loving dynamic and we have since flourished. High marks in exams, feature concerts in the Royal Navel College Chapel on the way!!!! But wait… how can we have a concert for a chamber group which doesn’t really exist? – Without a name we are simply “that other quintet in college” which quite honestly is useless on a professional level.

Would any of YOU hire “that other quintet from that music college?” — Didn’t think so. So! After months of ignoring this issue and joking to each other about names – some of my suggestions included ‘the Bell Ends’ and ‘Passing Winds’ vulgar I know – but we finally sat down today and decided that it was time to seriously think about names, and we have given ourselves this Sunday as a deadline to decide. After a short discussion with our leader Ali and struggling to think of anything other than the negatives, we came up with some definite DON’TS for us:

1. Don’t pick something that already exists. – Do your research. Duh. And yes I might have made that mistake and had to do a quick back track…

2. Don’t spell anything wrong – Unless it’s deliberate, though be careful!

3. Nothing rude/Puns aren’t always cool. – Especially if you have to keep that name FOREVER, just remember that, this name is FOREVER, and once on the internet, always on the internet.

The best pun name for a chamber group I’ve seen is The Breaking Winds, a whole other thing entirely, they are funny, they do great arrangements….! Just see for yourself (I’M A FAN).

I believe that a lot of this is common sense, and people may agree or disagree, or even laugh at me for writing this down (see the nervous musician paranoia return?) but these are mistakes I have made in the past, and that I’ve watched other people make and regret.

All of this doesn’t really answer my question “How to pick a chamber group name?” but it has certainly made me feel better by writing it all down!  I will keep you updated in the near future with a name.

To hear the Breaking Winds bassoon quartet find them on youtube

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