Square Pig in a Round Hole-September 26, 2020

Naming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.
Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times nightlife listings for abundant source material!
(Until live music returns, I am curating retrospective posts from past material. Dates indicate when the band was originally featured.)

 

SQUARE PIG IN A ROUND HOLE PANDEMIC EDITION #28

Seven years ago yesterday, September 25, 2013, was the auspicious date when my band-name blogging and my speculative fiction writing collided and nothing would ever be the same. My first published fiction, a short story called “Hat”, concerns Barbara, an invisible teenager who discovers she can be seen if she wears a hat. At the end of the story she is on her way to talk to a classmate about starting a band. Shortly before the story was published, I was driving to my writing group and saw a lighted sign for a storage place with a burned-out O. ST RAGE seemed like a good name for a band or a superhero. I thought, “Why not both and why not Barbara?” That tiny inspiration for a garage rock/superhero mashup has so far produced another short story, two novels (The Gospel According to St Rage and Barbara and the Rage Brigade), and eleven songs that Barbara allowed me to collaborate on.

And also confirmed me as a band-name aficionado for life, even with the bars closed and no live shows scheduled for the foreseeable future. This week I’m back to a theme of fall and school. Everybody, wash your hands, wear your mask, and plan to vote like your life depends on it. And if you are able, please buy these bands’ music and merch while we wait for a better day.

Secret School

(August 15, 2015) This one appeals to me as a fan of the old Pogo comic strip. In 1950, when some Southern schools closed rather than accept racial integration, Walt Kelly drew a series of strips in which some swamp critters opened a “speakeasy school” so the chilluns could still quench their thirst for learning. I wonder, would kids be more eager to go to school if they had to be sneaky about it?

The Student Loan Stringband

(August 15, 2015) This is a hot topic around Square Pig HQ. Considering the ages of the junior SPs, I’m feeling lucky it took this long, but the eldest of them is about to borrow a bit of money for school. If all goes well, it won’t prove too burdensome, which can’t be said of many in his generation. They should all be issued a banjo to cheer them up.

tomorrows tulips

(June 7, 2014) Planting tulip bulbs in the dark and damp of October is an act of faith that spring will come again, and the next spring, and the next.

Valhalla Boys & Girls Club

(September 13, 2014) I imagine kids getting out of class and crossing the rainbow bridge to their after-school program. I wonder if their parents know about the quaffing and fighting?

Withering Blooms

(October 29, 2016) Seasonal, with a hint of romantic melancholy. The last rose of autumn.

 

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, upcoming events, and other goodies, including “Wizard in the Mosh Pit,” an exclusive short story just for subscribers. Click the link to check out the first seven issues and subscribe here for future issues–Issue 8 comes out in early October. (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-August 28, 2020

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times nightlife listings for abundant source material!

SQUARE PIG IN A ROUND HOLE PANDEMIC EDITION #24

These retrospective posts have generally had themes: sickness, contagion, bones, patriotism, summer …. This week’s is more a miscellaneous grab-bag of band names/responses that I tucked away as I was gathering themed material, though there end up being sub-themes of solitude and back-to-school. This post empties the current bucket, so I will have to return to the well next week. I hope these odd gems speak to you as they did me. Wash your hands, wear your mask, donate blood, and please buy these bands’ music and merch while we wait for a better day.

Dressed as Super Heroes

(December 28, 2013) I appreciate a band that can own its comic book nerd roots. And as it happens, the follow-up to my story in HEATHERS gives the heroine superpowers. She doesn’t do capes or high heels. [Sadly, the band has ceased to exist. But that follow-up eventually grew into The Gospel According to St. Rage, my first published novel! –ed.]

Intronaut

(November 8, 2014) Sailing the seas of one’s own inner being. Alone.

It’s OK!

(June 20, 2014) I can’t speak for anyone else, but I feel better. The punctuation really helps.

Mean Recess

(August 3, 2013) You gotta walk that lonesome playground; you gotta walk it by yourself …

Sunset Rollercoaster

(September 22, 2018) Nostalgic end-of-summer vibe.

 

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, upcoming events, and other goodies, including “Wizard in the Mosh Pit,” an exclusive short story just for subscribers. Click the link to check out the first seven issues and subscribe here for future issues. (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-July 11, 2020

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times nightlife listings for abundant source material!

SQUARE PIG IN A ROUND HOLE PANDEMIC EDITION #17

facemask with message truth. justice. rock & roll.My love of clever band names gave rise to the fictional almost-all-girl garage band St. Rage, as featured in two of my novels (The Gospel According to St. Rage and Barbara and the Rage Brigade). What’s a band without merch? So I spent last weekend setting up an online shop to offer T-shirts, facemasks, etc. for St. Rage, as T-shirt with message: St. Rage Truth. Justice. Rock & Roll.well as my real band, T-shirt with image of pop-punk duo Your Mother Should Know as gross but lovable monstersYour Mother Should Know (provider of sounds for the St. Rage EPs). But I’m not about to stop celebrating band names. As promised on July 4, I continue with the second in a series of Americana-themed retrospectives. Be safe, wear your mask, and please buy these bands’ music and merch while we wait for a better day.

American Authors

(February 8, 2020) I love it when music and literature collide! This is what I aspired to be from an early age. We’re mostly not rich and famous.

American Wrecking Company

(March 5, 2016) AKA party politics as usual. When the revolution comes, they will have brought it on themselves.

Lightning Kills Eagle

(March 14, 2015) This could be a Native American myth or a headline on a slow news day.

Mice Parade

(June 1, 2013) Cute as anything until they march into your pantry.

This American Knife

(April 14, 2019) Public radio, weaponized. Need to be on a bill with past honorees Ira’s Glasses.

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, upcoming events, and other goodies, including “Wizard in the Mosh Pit,” an exclusive short story just for subscribers. Click the link to check out the first seven issues and subscribe here for future issues. (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-July 4, 2020

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times nightlife listings for abundant source material!

SQUARE PIG IN A ROUND HOLE PANDEMIC EDITION #16

In honor of Independence Day, I present an Americana-themed retrospective. I found enough suitable candidates in the vault for several posts, so the theme will continue for most of the month. It’s not fireworks but I hope it will do. Be safe, wear your mask, and please buy these bands’ music and merch while we wait for a better day.

American Nudism

(July 25, 2015) The qualifier “American” suggests something about the nudism — it’s either exceptional or puritanical, I just can’t decide which.

Boom City

(January 31, 2015) So many reasons to love this as a specifically Seattle band name: our history with supersonic jets; that long-lived fireworks stand; our growing reputation as the capital of LOUD.

Great American Trainwreck

(December 1, 2018) I can’t think of a better description of our current moment. [Gosh, that aged well. –ed.]

The Parade Schedule

(May 23, 2015) Festivity requires organization. All the clowns and marching bands have to respect the person with the clipboard.

Ragged Union

(December 10, 2016) I can’t seem to escape post-electoral blues. This one speaks to our Divided States of America, tattered but not yet sundered. [Wow, another one. –ed.]

Fireworks at the End coverOh, all right. Have some Fireworks at the End.

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, upcoming events, and other goodies, including “Wizard in the Mosh Pit,” an exclusive short story just for subscribers. Click the link to check out the first six issues and subscribe here for future issues. The July 2020 issue comes out next week! (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-February 8, 2020

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times club listings for abundant source material!

20200208_135658Regular readers know that St. Rage is one of my favorite bands (and band names). Perhaps because I invented them and wrote and performed their songs. Well, today has been a very St. Rage kind of day: hat shopping in the morning, blood donation this afternoon. Before we move on to the real-life bands, here’s a little song about donating blood:

Thanks for your patience! On to this week’s honored five:

American Authors

I love it when music and literature collide! This is what I aspired to be from an early age. We’re mostly not rich and famous.

Franks and Deans

Wordplay + nostalgia = the Rat Pack’s favorite lunch.

Happy People Team

After this last week (or last 3 years), I know I need some positivity. And a reminder that we’re stronger–and happier–together.

Take It to Space

Way past over the top!

Tang

And what do we take to space, but what the astronauts drank!

Shameless self-promotion: Add this to your calendar now: On Saturday, March 21, 2 pm at The Neverending Bookshop, I will join with other local authors to read from and sign SHOUT: An Anthology of Resistance Poetry and Short Fiction. Twenty-five writers on the theme of resisting fascism/authoritarianism/nationalism. My story “Emma’s Knives” uses recipes as vehicles for coded messages of encouragement and instruction from grandmother to granddaughter in oppressed circumstances. Read my advance review here.

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, upcoming events, and other goodies, including “Wizard in the Mosh Pit,” an exclusive short story just for subscribers. Click the link to check out the first five issues and subscribe here for future issues.  (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-January 25, 2020

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times club listings for abundant source material!

Shameless Self-Promotion, right up front: Tonight, January 25, at 7:00 p.m., I will read from and sign my latest novel, the punk rock/superhero mashup Barbara and the Rage Brigade, at Third Place Books Ravenna. Details here. I will have download codes for this EP of 4 songs Barbara/I wrote for the book:

Fictional bands are all well and good, but I feel privileged to live in a world with these real ones:

DoughP!

The spelling and punctuation tell you exactly how to pronounce it. More complexity and substance than mere dope.

Flannelog

So peculiarly Pacific Northwest, all plaid shirts, tube amps, and vinyl.

Glitterer

Hero or villain? Tossing glitter is a cheering, celebratory deed but being microplastic, glitter itself is evil. What the world needs is biodegradable glitter. (That would be colored sugar. Glitterbomb victims would end up sticky and covered in ants.)

Hurry Up, Snufkin

Pop culture reference across media for the win! I chose this for the extreme childlike cuteness, little knowing this is the title of an episode of an actual cartoon. (This artist was previously featured under the name Meanderthals, about whom I said, “Just us cave people out for a directionless stroll.” 12/23/2017)

Strayaways

Less intentional than runaways but probably not coming back anytime soon.

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, upcoming events, and other goodies, including “Wizard in the Mosh Pit,” an exclusive short story just for subscribers. Click the link to check out the first five issues and subscribe here for future issues.  (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-August 24, 2019

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times club listings for abundant source material!

The big excitement this past week was the re-release of my Seattle-set garage-rock fairy tale, The Gospel According to St. Rage on Tuesday, followed by the radio debut of the titular garage band on Wednesday. DJ Barnabas of the show Community Noise on KBFG 107.3 FM embedded “Huge Guy in the Mosh Pit” into a fun and eclectic playlist. It was an honor to be programmed next to Dead Bars. If you want to donate your own music to the Community Noise collection for possible radio play, email CommunityNoise.blog@gmail.com.

And now, on with the band names!

Far Flung Future

Where your whiz-bang sci-fi tech might not be obsolete before the book is published.

Meat Hair

Perhaps the grossest hair treatment since egg shampoo.

Sir Ma’am Sir

How you address your commanding officer when they haven’t told you their preferred pronouns and you don’t want to be the first to ask.

Smaller in Person

“Judge me by my size, do you?”

Your Downstairs Neighbors

They (and your cat) would appreciate it if you didn’t vacuum every day. They might even agree to turn down the music.

 

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, and other goodies. Click the link to check out the first three issues and subscribe here for future issues.  (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-August 17, 2019

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times club listings for abundant source material!

Before we get down to the serious business of celebrating band names, I’m tickled to share a brand-new St. Rage track, “The Leaves Were Wearing Her Lipstick.”

Barbara (AKA St. Rage), the protagonist of my garage-rock fairy tale The Gospel According to St. Rage, is a songwriter because that seemed like a plausible starting point for a friendless musician who has never been in a band but ends up starting one. I had no intention of writing songs, but Barbara’s song titles were so great. I started writing lyrics, and enlisted my brother to help put them to music. In that book, Barbara made an observation about oak leaves that went into a poem for a school assignment instead of a song because the poetry assignment had a deadline. In Book 2, Barbara and the Rage Brigade (coming in November 2019!), she finally wrote the song.

But enough about me and my fictional band. This week’s listings gave up these treasures:

deathCAVE

I find it interesting that of these two foreboding elements, more emphasis is placed on “cave.” It’s dark in there, with strange echoes.

Dream Queen

The grooviest monarch, who can turn terrifying without warning.

Impulse Noise

If the notion strikes you, just start banging on stuff.

Pain Field

Local flavor! Remove a silent E to reveal acres of suffering.

Pedestria

Here’s where I want to live! Nobody drives because everything is within walking distance.

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, and other goodies. Click the link to check out the first three issues and subscribe here for future issues.  (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-August 10, 2019

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times club listings for abundant source material!

Gospel+re-release+eBook+cover+edit+2I woke up to the cover reveal and pre-order announcement for my next book. Since this is a re-release, it was also my first book, which only makes this extra special. The Gospel According to St Rage is a Seattle-set garage-rock fairy tale about an invisible girl who puts on a hat, starts an all-girl band, and develops anger-fueled, gesture-based superpowers. It was in this story that my blogging and fiction writing first converged, so I’m excited to release it into the world once again.

These non-fictional band names are pretty special, too:

Bad Books

That novel you’re embarrassed to be seen reading, but you can’t stop turning the pages. This is where ebooks come in handy.

Crisis Actors Guild

Google search for this very official-sounding name seems to have about equal chances of turning up a conspiracy-theory debunking website or this punk band. Sounds about right.

Mamalarky

Straighten up. Mom doesn’t have time for your baloney or monkeyshines.

Specswizard

Magic glasses instead of a wand. (I am bespectacled and I write about wizards, so this one jumped out at me.)

We Could Be Monsters

Every little cute thing has this inspirational poster.

 

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, and other goodies. Click the link to check out the first three issues and subscribe here for future issues.  (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

Square Pig in a Round Hole-August 3, 2019

Square PigNaming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times club listings for abundant source material!

67340208_10215080709550518_3444971926429106176_nWhat a week it has been! I got my author face out in public for a reading to launch Wizard Girl; celebrated my 56th birthday by walking home from work on a beautiful day (about 5 miles); recorded a couple demos of new St. Rage songs; enjoyed a recital of modern vocal music; and now I’m on vacation! On top of all that, I get to lift up these five fine band names:

Bragrat

When a typo becomes a character. This rodent has no lack of confidence and will tell you all about it.

Clandestine Beam

Poetic oxymoron. No one lights a lamp, then hides it under a basket.

Jack and the Dull Boy

I like this one both for the classic X and the Y structure and for the creepy literary reference. (It appears to be an actual two-piece, too. Not sure which one is Jack, but their demo is not dull.)

Rather Ordinary Dudes

A humble, aw-shucks attitude to balance Bragrat, who are on the same bill.

Schmutzhund

Fierce guard dog has a dirty face. Granny licks her handkerchief.

 

One last thing before you go: I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, and other goodies. Click the link to check out the first three issues and subscribe here for future issues.  (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)