Oh, no. I need to name something.

The situation: An idea, concept, or event is currently in limbo, with either no name or a temporary one that’s incredibly generic and/or automatically generated. It now needs some official nomenclature. It needs a name.

Names are a crazy thing. Lots of people who are not me probably have no problem with coming up with names. They just pull some magical title out of that place in their brain where such things lie dormant, waiting to be called upon. They probably don’t even think much about it. It’s not a process. It’s not a…well, a thing. Definitely not a thang.

You gotta name your kid. You gotta name your pet. You gotta name your computer, both internally and colloquially. You gotta name your RPG character. You gotta name your “New Folder” or “Untitled Document”. You gotta name “IMGFROMCAMERA923423.JPG” to something more useful. There are other things that don’t necessarily need names, but you might think they do, like your car,  your plant, your musical instrument, or your condition where you do something clumsily or endearingly (someone else’s probably got that for you, though).

For the things that really need a name, we use them as shorthand for reference, and they’re really useful, but they’re also a double-edged sword. On one hand, they’re a necessary and efficient tool that will become indelibly linked to the entity attached to it, and on the other hand they’re a necessary and efficient tool that will become indelibly linked to the entity attached to it. Gah!

OK, I’m not really that emotionally unstable about naming things, worrying that the wrong choice is going to create cataclysmic chaos and the downfall of man. That’s just silly. However, I can definitely get caught up in the act of naming, losing some minor amount of sleep and otherwise productive time going over the myriad avenues of titleship. Once you name something you gotta stick with it. Whether it’s a good name or not, I believe you should stick with it in the long run to maintain consistency and integrity. No one wants to have to relearn the name of something once learned if they can avoid it.

So, what do I need to name? As a musician, this comes up all the time: either a song or album. Yep. I may have entitled my latest production A Nebyoolaeous Experience, but I’m thinking I need to rely so heavily on my creative and online namesake for lasting musical roadmarks. Not that I’m planning on abandoning my handle, but I’d like my songs and collections of songs to have a more personality-neutral bent. They blend better in the greater sonic soundscape that is the Internet. However, I also don’t want to go too far in the other direction where there be beige dragons and faceless NPCs walking from coordinate to coordinate in a loop, spewing the same lifeless line over and over.

Some previous album titles and how I came up with them:

  • Clocks Striking 13 – I thought it sounded cool, in an edgy, dystopic future. Little did I remember that I was essentially stealing straight from the maw of Orwell with that one.
  • Music Unsolicitedly Started Idiosyncratically for Karma, or M.U.S.I.K. – /deep breath. I really like to overthink things, don’t I?
  • Ebben Flow – RPG music that massages a typical water-related characteristic (“Ebb and Flow”, get it?). Most RPGs aren’t much more creative.
  • Majicking – My initials, MJC, as a gerund.
  • Scraps – Short odds and ends from my mind.
  • The Matic – Collection of themes. Yeeeeah.
  • Gamey Mixture – A collection, or mixture, of video game remixes
  • Adversapolis – A made-up Greek word that mixes “adversity” and “polis”, as it described the personal difficulties sung about on the album. I think I used the Internet to come up with this one.

As you can tell, I like to be clever, but often end up being cheesy. When your music largely consists of wordless instrumentals, the underlying theme to things can be hard to ascertain.

Thus, I’m on the prowl for a new moniker to go with Album #12. Inspiration can come from anywhere…I just need to find it.