The process of coming up with a good name for a new K-Pop group is undoubtedly a long and difficult one! There are so many things to consider, such as the kind of vibe it gives the group, the SEO of the word(s) used, and several other factors. It’s no surprise, then, that many K-Pop artists have gone through several name ideas before deciding on the one they debut with! Here are 10 K-Pop groups who had one or multiple name ideas prior to the one they ended up deciding on.
STAYC — which stands for Star to a Young Culture — once revealed that they had a couple different ideas for their group name, which included “Girls of Asia”, “Bookmark”, and perhaps most strangely, “Molars”! The last of these three was going to signify their potential to “chew up and swallow K-Pop”, but we’re glad they changed their minds on that one.
MAMAMOO’s label, RBW, used to be called WA Entertainment. Because of this, one of their potential group names was “WAH WAH Girls”! Apparently “Bellybutton” was also on the list, which would have been an odd choice for sure.
ATEEZ went through a list of potential names for their group before deciding on their official one! Among their possibilities were “New World” (which has ended up being used in their songs multiple times, as well as a song name), “Maker” (which was suggested by leader Hongjoong himself), “BOXX/BOSS”, “Big Picture”, and “Pendant”.
TVXQ had several strange ideas for group names before they finally settled on their official one (the full name of which translates to “Rising Gods of the East). Among them were “O Jang Yuk Bu” (which apparently translates to “internal organs” or “The Five Visceras and the Six Entrails”), “Jeon Meok Go” (which is short for a phrase that means “A Whale that Eats Legends”), “Dream Team”, and “SM5”. We’re glad they settled on TVXQ!
SHINee was almost given the name of “The Kiddies” rather than what they ended up with, but thankfully SM Entertainment founder Lee Soo Man rejected it and gave them the name SHINee instead. And it definitely suits them better, especially now that they’re grown men!
ITZY is another group that had a series of names that they could have ended up being called, which range in levels of absurdity! “Queendom” and “Purple Heart” were two ideas that were pretty normal, if a bit bland, but “Triggle” (which was a combination of the words “Trigger” and “Giggle”) doesn’t seem like it would have suited them at all!
(G)I-DLE certainly has one of the most confusing official group names in K-Pop, but we’re not sure we like their other potential names better! They have mentioned that they could have been called “Anicolor” (a combination of “Animal” and “Color”) or “Tira-miss-u” (a play on the dessert “Tiramisu”, which Minnie allegedly especially hated).
ONEUS had a couple of names they could have ended up with: “The Kingz”, “Keystone”, “Quantum J”, and even “Wang Wang”. The last of these might sound the strangest, but it translates to “King King” and was, like “The Kingz”, a nod to their royal stage names (i.e. Leedo named after King Sejong the Great, Youngjo sharing the name of the 21st king of the Joseon dynasty, etc.). Nevertheless, we like ONEUS the best!
BLACKPINK may not have been defined by their bold color duo if they had chosen one of the other names suggested to them! These included “Magnum”, “Baby Monsters” (which seems likely to be the name of YG Entertainment‘s upcoming girl group), and “Pink Punk” (which allegedly was a nine-member line-up that included five other trainees outside of BLACKPINK’s current members).
10. Stray Kids
Stray Kids was another group that almost had the name “Trigger”, similar to ITZY’s “Triggle”, but leader Bang Chan was crucial in deciding on their official debut name. We’re not sure why JYP Entertainment is so adamant about the name, but maybe it will end up being used for some group in the future!