Fun With Acronyms: Music

  • The song S.W.L.A.B.R. by the rock band Cream stands for She Was Like A Bearded Rainbow. And their song N.S.U. stands for Non-Specific Urethritis.
  • The electronic band LMFAO. It sneaks in one profanity in it, but it's a big one. LMFAO stands for Laugh My Fucking Ass Off. The trademark had to censor it to "Freaking".
  • *NSYNC: JustiN, ChriS, JoeY, JasoN, JC. After original member Jason left, the group joked that they nicknamed Lance "Lanceton" so the acronym would still work. (The acronym still works, but the "N" is in the middle of his name instead of the end.)
    • Their merchandise distribution company, ZEEKS, takes its name from the last letter of their last names.
  • The '''J'''apan '''A'''nimationsong '''M'''akers '''Project''', a group of various anime theme song singers.
  • J-Pop band SMAP stands for Sport and Music Assembly People. This isn't even an attempt to be funny.
  • The Beatles song Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, whose acronym, according to John Lennon, is just a coincidence, referencing a drawing from John's son Julian about his classmate Lucy O'Donnell.
    • The punk/metal band Life, Sex and Death used the same acronym.
    • As did the goth-pop outfit Love Spirals Downwards.
    • It also popped up in the Aloytah Haynes Jeremiah song "Lake Shore Drive", which is especially glaring because the Drive isn't generally called that.
    • The Flaming Lips' songs are published by Lovely Sorts of Death (which later also became the name of the vanity label that they use to release their collaborations and more experimental works).
    • A Brazilian singer had the song "Lindo Sonho Delirante" (Beautiful Delusional Dream).
    • The Blues Magoos (one of the first bands to call their music "psychedelic") had songs called "Love Seems Doomed" and "Albert Common Is Dead".
  • Korn had "A.D.I.D.A.S." (All Day I Dream About Sex).
    • Before they became Korn, the band (with a different singer) played under the name LAPD, which they claimed stood for "Laughing As People Die" or "Love And Peace, Dude".
    • While we're at it, although Adidas itself isn't an acronym, but a portmanteau (of its founder, Adolf "Adi" Dassler), a book about the brand is called All Day I Dream About Sports.
  • Detractors of hip hop music insist that "rap" stands for Retards Attempting Poetry. Fans may counter with Rhythmic American Poetry.
  • The Wu Tang Clan song "C. R. E. A. M" - "C"ash "R"ules "E"verything "A"round "M"e - CREAM, get the money - dollar dollar bill y'all."
    • The Clan seems to enjoy coming up with backronyms as well, such as "Witty Unpredictable Talent And Natural Game."
  • Big Audio Dynamite, who came up with the acronym BAD first, then tried to come up with a name that fit their music.
  • The name of R&B girl group TLC refers to its members T-Boz, Left Eye, and Chili, playing on the old phrase "Tender Loving Care".
  • Naughty By Nature rose to prominence with the song "O.P.P.", officially standing for Other People's Pussy (or Penis), but the last P was cleverly and intentionally Bowdlerized in the song itself to mean Property.
  • Ja Rule's name is supposed to stand for "Jeffrey Atkins Represents Unconditional Love's Existence, though in one magazine interview he said that it simply stands for Jeffrey Atkins Rule.
  • In a tongue-in-cheek video promoting a recent tour Tom Waits claims the route this tour takes was specifically chosen because the names of the towns he is performing at spell the word "PEHDSCKJMBA". "PEHDSCKJMBA" is then revealed to be an an acronym for People Envy Happiness. Dogs, Though, Sense Courage, Knowing Jubilation Means Better Assets.
  • The British dance band EMF, of "Unbelievable" fame, claimed that their name stood for Epsom Mad Funkers. However, their song "Head on the Ball" included the words "Electromotive Force" and "Ecstasy Mother Fuckers."
  • Fall Out Boy's album "From Under the Cork Tree".
  • Korean rock band FT Island has Five Treasure Island, and sometimes shortened to FTI.
  • Korean rock band CN Blue has Code Name Burning Lovely Untouchable Emotional, and sometimes shortened to CNB.
  • In the mid-'90s, contemporary Christian artist Carman made an album called Righteous Invasion Of Truth, or R.I.O.T.
  • Former Stone Roses frontman Ian Brown's single F.E.A.R takes this trope to an extreme.
  • The hardcore punk band MDC would change the meaning of the acronym for each release (e.g. Millions of Dead Cops, My Dead Child, M IL Fs Date Cougars, More Dead Cops)
  • Japanese Hardcore Punk group GISM stands for... actually, that seemed to change every five mminutes. One album cover credits it as "Guerilla Incidiery Sabotage Mutineers", but that's far from the only one.
  • And then there's Van Halen's 1991 album For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge...
  • To some fans, Slayer jokingly stood for "Satan Laughs As You Eternally Rot".
  • Aerosmith's song "F.I.N.E. (Fucked-up, Insecure, Neurotic and Emotional)".
  • Bob Seger's song "U.M.C. (Upper Middle Class)".
  • Kevin Bloody Wilson's song D.I.L.L.I.G.A.F. (Do I Look Like I Give A Fuck?)
  • U.S.D.A. or United Streets Dopeboyz of America.
  • Just Undeniably Some of The Illest Composers Ever. or J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League
  • Renaldo And The Loaf did "Meanings of W.E.I.R.D", with verses ranging from Whisper english intone religious dutch and White elephants injure repugnant dogs
    • The song was originally written as part of a contest to determine what the name of W.E.I.R.D., The Residents' fan club, would actually stand for: The winning entry was We Endorse Immediate Residents Deification.
  • Gossip Girl's soundtrack album Original Music From Gossip Girl.
  • Lupe Fiasco 's upcoming album Lasers is a backronym for Love Always Shines, Everytime Remember 2 Smile.
  • The song 'S.H.E.' from IAMX's album The Alternative stands for "Secret Harmonic Emotion".
  • French metal band named T.A.N.K (Think of A New Kind).
  • Italian noise artist Fukte took advantage of this: A recent release was entitled "RAM", which could either mean "Raped And Murdered" (after the only track on the album) or "Random Access Memory." (It had a paint-covered RAM chip glued to the back)
  • My Chemical Romance is often shortened to MCR.
    • Their new album had Better Living Industries, or Blind.
  • When Nine Inch Nails and Jane's Addiction co-headlined a tour together, they of course called it NINJA.
  • In 1970, there were rumours that Jimi Hendrix would be member of a new supergroup called Hendrix, Emerson, Lake & Palmer.
  • In an little-known CD album from 1991 called "Sandi Patti and the Friendship Company: Open for Business", the characters are discussing a name for their new club (they eventually decide on "Friendship Company"). Infield says "I make a motion we call our club ?Kind Creatures Caring for Companionless Kids?! Zig invokes this trope when she says "I vote for the name ?Organization of International Nice Kids Erasing Reasons for Sadness?! It has a certain, oh, sound for sophistication!" A few seconds later, meaningful acronyms are forgotten when she suggests "The International Association of Nice Kids and Creatures in the Officinal Professional Business of Friendship... Incorporated," At which point she realizes that it's too long.
  • The short-lived supergroup XYZ, who never officially released anything: It stood for Ex Yes and Zeppelin, as the lineup consisted of Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin and Chris Squire and Alan White from Yes. They had wanted Robert Plant to join too, by the way.
  • Tech N9ne has a song called "F.U.N." It stands for Fuck U Niggas.
  • Post-hardcore band Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows.
  • Pink Floyd's live box set P.U.L.S.E. just has the periods in the title to look cool, and doesn't actually stand for anything. However, one fan-made FAQ jokes that, depending on how you feel about the David Gilmour-fronted incarnation of the band, it could either be "Pinkfloyd Ultimate Light & Sound Experience" or "Pretty Uninspired Light Show, Essentially"
    • Also their song Shine On You Crazy Diamond, in reference to former band member Syd Barrett.
  • The Hip Hop group Natas. The name is Nation Ahead of Time And Space. It's also "Satan" backwards.
  • Feminist rapper Monie Love had "Born to B.R.E.E.D. (Build Relationships where Education and Enlightenment Dominate)".
  • Vanilla Ice's Wisdom, Tenacity and Focus.
  • KMFDM's name was often thought to stand for "Kill Mother Fucking Depeche Mode," but it's actually "Kein Mehrheit fur die Mitleid" or "Kein Mitleid fur die Mehrheit," which is loosely translated from the German as "No pity for the majority."
  • Australian anonymous alternative band TISM stands for "This Is Serious Mum" due to their often ridiculous lyrical themes and politically incorrect humour
  • 801, the occasional band created by Brian Eno and Phil Manzanera, is sometimes assumed to be based on an acronym of Eight Nought One. Eno has denied this, saying, "Ingenious, but...", and Manzanera has performed with 801 without Eno.
  • Sound Horizon's Elysion album features five songs with English titles that don't seem to be connected at all to El's story told in the other five. So why are they there? The final El song, "El's Paradise [Side: A]", offers a solution:
    The fourth horizon, the true face of paradise.
    Ark
    Baroque
    Yield
    Sacrifice
    Stardust
    If one falls straight down, without being tempted by the four paradises ("El"s) in between, ABYSS is right there.
  • The Spinto Band were being pressured into adding lyrics to a brief wordless bridge in the song "Late", an idea they weren't too fond of. While the proper album version has the song as the band originally wrote it, some leaked promo copies do have these added lyrics. See if you notice anything unusual about them:
    Trapped Here In Some Select Universe, Can't Keep Still...
  • KISS, despite being in all caps, it's just the word - even if it coincides with the concept of Keep It Simple, Stupid. Given the time period in which they got their start, Moral Guardians were quick to adopt them the title Knights In Satan's Service or Kinder SS (when both Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons are Jewish, and even remade their logo so the double S would be closer to "ZZ" than Schutzstaffel).
  • GWAR has been theorized as standing for God, What an Awful Racket, however the band has denounced the name of having any meaning.
  • W.A.S.P. is either We Are Satan's People or We Are Sexual Perverts depending on your preference.
    • When Blackie Lawless was asked in an interview what it really stood for, he deadpanned, "We Ain't Sure, Pal."
  • The name of hip-hop duo N.A.S.A. stands for "North America South America" - One member, Squeak E. Clean, hails from the United States, while the other, DJ Zegon, hails from Brazil.
  • Drake's catchphrase YOLO (You Only Live Once)
    • "YOLO" by The Lonely Island featuring Adam Levine and Kendrick Lamar uses it to stand for the same thing, but deliberately misses the point of the slogan, using the Spoof Aesop that you should take absolutely no risks in life because "you only live once". So at the end of the song, it also stands for "You Oughta Look Out".
    • And then there's the Hindu-inspired send-up of it by MIA, YALA (You Always Live Again). MIA's own Stage Name fits - it's a pun on her nickname, "Maya" (short for Mathangi), while also meaning "Missing In Acton" (no, not "action", the London neigbourhood).
  • The Unrest compilation B.P.M. [1991-1994] - In music, "B.P.M." usually stands for "Beats per minute", but here it also stands for the band members' first names - Bridget, Phil, and Mark.
  • On the P.D.Q. Bach Fake Radio Show Album WTWP, the initials of the eponymous radio station are said to stand for Wall-To-Wall Pachelbel.
  • LL Cool J's G.O.A.T. - the full title as printed on the album cover is G.O.A.T. Featuring James T. Smith: The Greatest of All Time.
    • He has released a single inspired by his acting in NCIS, titled "NCIS: No Crew Is Superior".
    • And his song "Fuhgidabowdit" concludes a series of Professional Wrestling Shout Outs with "WWF stands for When and Where we Fuckin'"
  • Daft Punk have a DVD consisting of music videos from the album Homework, which has the Long Title D.A.F.T.: A Story About Dogs, Androids, Firemen and Tomatoes. The title refers to prominent elements of the five featured videos: "Da Funk" and it's sequel video "Fresh" have an anthropomorphic dog as a main character, "Around The World" features dancing robots, "Burnin'" features firemen rushing to the scene of a fire at a skyscraper dance party, and "Revolution 909" includes a montage of tomatoes being farmed, packaged, shipped, purchased, and turned into tomato sauce.
  • Fat Joe named two albums as Jealous One's Envy and Jealous Ones Still Envy (the cover even painted the first letters differently).
  • The Black Eyed Peas' The E.N.D. (The Energy Never Dies).
  • System of a Down has a song called "P.L.U.C.K." It means Politically Lying Unholy Cowardly Killers.
  • The lyrics for Ninja Sex Party's "FYI I Wanna F Your A" are composed mainly of acronyms for unrelated things being changed to stand for sexual stuff. For example:
    ''Let's play a sexy RPG
    While we watch ABC
    And eat a bowl of MSG!
    Meaning that I'll Really Pound your Groin
    While you Achieve Butt Climax
    And Make Sex Gravy!
  • The Dead Milkmen's "V.F.W.", where the chorus is "We're all veterans of a fucked up world". The wordplay involved is that VFW is also the name of an organization of American war veterans, standing for "Veterans of Foreign Wars".
  • Jack Bruce, Bill Lordan, and Robin Trower worked together on an album called B.L.T.. The cover art even depicts a Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato sandwich.
  • Sepultura, on Roots (1996) "Cut-Throat" ends with the words "Enslavement, Patethic, Ignorant, Corporations", which spell out their former record label EPIC.
  • Nick Cave's "Loverman" (later covered by Metallica) does this twice with the title:
    L is for LOVE baby, O is for ONLY you that I do, V is for loving VIRTUALLY everything that you are, E is for loving almost EVERYTHING that you do, R is for RAPE me, M is for MURDER me, A is for ANSWERING all of my prayers, N is for KNOWING your loverman's going to be the answer to all of yours
    I'll say it again: L is for LOVE, baby, O is for O yes I do, V is for VIRTUE, so I ain't gonna hurt you, E is for EVEN if you want me to, R is for RENDER unto me, baby, M is for that which is MINE, A is for ANY old how, darling, N is for ANY old time