#GreatBandNames · 7 January 2017

Original Vulture by Magnus Kjaergaard
Original Baggage by Billy Hathorn
licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

I was on Twitter the other day and saw a great hashtag that I had to comment on. #GreatBandNames

Part of the reason I was looking at trending hashtags was because of a book called Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk. It is a book about using social media to get people to notice your company and get them to a place where they can buy what you are selling. It is a great book that got me thinking. And tweeting. At the very least, it has made me wonder what the heck it is I am selling. (Can you even sell drivel?) To be sure, it has helped me realize that I know little to nothing about selling myself and using social media to do it.

But back to the hashtag.

One of the important things Mr. Vaynerchuk says about using Twitter is that you ought to look at trending hashtags. (I know that it is technically called an octothorpe, but that is a different story.) And not just look at them, but add something called context to the story. That context could be promoting your brand and getting people to your point of sale (throwing the right hook or delivering the punch line). Or it could just be chatting people up getting to know them (having conversations) and what they are looking for (jabbing) so that you can deliver the goods (the right hook). It is a brilliant strategy that I have no idea how to take advantage of. But I tried. I had to try. Especially since I was given such a great topic.

Which brings me back to #GreatBandNames. And a nostalgic story.

Kevin was one of the guys I hung around with back in high school. Years and years ago. We had classes together and played soccer together. And we lied to Dave together.

Now Dave was not a gullible guy or anything. He was just trusting. And Kevin was pretty convincing. I am not sure how all the lying started, but it was probably something like the following.

Dave: “Hey, what’s that you’re drawing?”

Kevin: “This?” pointing to the picture he was drawing of vultures perched on luggage. “Oh, it’s just an album cover of a new band I saw.”

Dave: “New band?”

Kevin: “Yeah. It’s called Carrion Baggage.”

Dave: “Carry-on Baggage? That’s a stupid name for a band.”

Kevin: “Not carry-on like you carry on a plane. Carrion – C-A-R-R-I-O-N – like dead flesh.”

Me: “Thus the vultures.”

Kevin: “Right. Thus the vultures.” He probably looked over at me and winked. He certainly smiled.

Dave: “Well… That does make more sense. But it’s still a stupid name for a band.”

Kevin: “Their fans don’t think so.”

Dave: “Yeah. Well…”

Me: “Hey, thousands of fans can’t be wrong.” I am sure Kevin’ smile got bigger acknowledging my collusion.

Dave: “So what kind of band are they anyway?”

Kevin: “Well, they’re a mix between hard rock and punk.”

Dave: “Oh. No wonder I never heard of them.”

Me: “Yeah. They’re kind of obscure even in their own genre. After all, that stuff rots your brain.”

Kevin: “Thus the vultures. Again.”

Dave: “Thus the vultures.” Awkward pause while Kevin draws some more. “So how many albums do they have anyway?”

Kevin: “Two. But they are coming out with a third.”

And so it went. For months, maybe even a year or more. Kevin kept drawing album art with vultures and luggage. Dave kept not really believing him, but thinking Carrion Baggage might really be a band. I kept giving my oh so convincing comments.

Actually, I am not sure if the deception went on longer than a few months or even years. For all I know, Kevin might still be lying to Dave. (If you are, I am sorry I spilled the beans.) Actually, I am sure Kevin regretted the deception even though it was all in good fun, and truthfully, I do not know if Dave ever truly believed the ruse. After all, the only thing Kevin ever had as evidence was the art he drew and my corroborating comments. And of course, the #GreatBandName, Carrion Baggage.

So if you are ever out cruising the Twitterverse and see the hashtag #GreatBandNames, I hope you remember my friends, Dave and Kevin. And I hope you chuckle a little when you think of Kevin’s Carrion Baggage and the ruse we played (sorry Dave). After all these years, it is still one of my favorite hoaxes and certainly the best of #GreatBandNames.

© 2017 Michael T. Miyoshi

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  1. What a funny story! I hope you friend eventually figured out the truth.

    Lydia · 9 January 2017, 08:14 ·

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