A guide to the best artist names in K-Pop

A guide to the best artist names in K-Pop

There are hundreds of idols in the wide and whimsical world of Korean pop, and some can get very creative with their names. For instance, G-DRAGON's stage name derived from his real name Kwon Jiyong — 'Ji' sounds like the letter 'G' in English, and 'Yong' in Korean translates to 'Dragon' in English.

We've listed some of the best, most creative Korean idol names below — have a look, perhaps you'll find a favourite, or better yet, come up with a better name yourself: 

The Short and Sweet

Left to right, we've got L of Infinite, N of VIXX and V of BTS — why the one-letter names? You could save so much trouble by just using your real names, just saying. 

The Easily Misinterpreted

BTS is the universally-understood acronym for Behind-The-Scenes, so it's safe to say the group and their fans struggled with the name a little in the initial stage of their career. 

GOT7 (pictured above)
The name was understandably, cause for confusion for several Game of Thrones fans when Season 7 of the hit television show was on air. 

The SEO-Unfriendly

Search results for artists with overly common names may return different, unexpected results. For instance, Korean R&B artist DEAN (pictured above) has a common name, which could prompt inaccurate results but Google's search results say otherwise. 

A pleasant surprise that the search results on Google for DEAN match a hundred percent, despite the very common name and the fact that DEAN isn't much of a mainstream artist.

However, the same can't be said for Tiffany and Sunny of Girls' Generation (SNSD), whose Google search results return with the brand Tiffany & Co and well, the sun, among other things -- that's of course if you omit their group name from the search entry.

Tiffany (SNSD)

Sunny (SNSD)

SNSD's Sunny's image only appears in the third row, and no, it's not the one of a smirking Donald Trump in the Teletubbies sun. TWICE's Momo is also cause for concern, as you can see below:

The Efficient Acronyms

Sure you've heard of BTS (pictured above) and NCT, but do you know what these names actually stand for? We're going to take you on a ride here, because K-Pop idols take their acronyms very seriously. Here are some of the best acronym-names in the Korean music industry:

B.A.P -- Best Absolute Perfect
I think we get the point, B.A.P is obviously amazing enough to reinforce the fact that they're on top – three times. 

BTS — Bangtan Sonyeondan, which translates to Bulletproof Boy Scouts... but are they?
The concept behind "Bulletproof Boy Scouts" sees the group protecting today's youth from the negativity of stereotype and criticism, and preserving their values and ideals with their music. BTS re-branded themselves in 2017, the acronym extending its definition to "Beyond The Scene", which if you ask me, is still cause for confusion among many. It's a good thing they're big now though, right?

EXIDEXceed In Dreaming (pictured above)
This sounds a lot like me when I was still schooling: excelling and exceeding in dreaming and sleeping in class.

NCT  Neo Culture Technology
What does Neo Culture Technology even mean...?

SG Wannabe — Simon & Garfunkel Wannabe
While I completely get the notion of following in your idols' footsteps, I don't think it's necessary to completely model yourselves after them, going so far as to proclaim how you literally want to be them.

Teen Top  Teenager Emoboy Emotion Next generation Talent Object Praise
Teen Top on its own sounds fine... until you realize the acronym stands for a mishmash of words Teen Top's company came up with on the spot to seem intellectual. Wasted opportunity to call the group 'The Extremely Emotional Never Grow Old Punks' — just as intellectual and not as silly-sounding.

U-KISS — Ubiquitous Korean International SuperStar
A very ambitious name for a group that, truth be told, did not go very far.

UP10TION Unbelievable Perfect 10 members Teenager Idol Open Now
Of course, UP10TION being from the same company as Teen Top, has the same unfortunate fate of having the group name stand for a random jumble of words.

VIXX Voice, Visual, Value in Excelsis
VIXX's name is kind of like EXID's, just more relevant to the music industry. Still doesn't make much sense, though.

The Questionable

BTS' Rap Monster
Enough said. Thankfully he changed it to RM — though we all still know what it stands for. 

Weki Meki (pictured above)
Very wacky indeed.

SECRET's Zinger
Before being mononymously known as Hana, the singer went with the stage name "Zinger", and we, for the love of god, cannot not (and still can't) stop thinking about Kentucky Fried Chicken whenever we hear this name.

The Names That Almost Were

BEAST (now Highlight) had a variety of names up for consideration, including "300", modeled after the Greek warriors, "Gold, Silver, Bronze Eagle" and "Ghengis Khan". Creative.

BTS, BTS' Jimin and Jungkook
 was almost named "Big Kids", which makes us think BTS doesn't sound so bad after all. Youngest member of the group, Jungkook, was almost given the stage name "Seagull", as he hails from the town of Busan. Meanwhile, main dancer and vocalist Jimin almost debuted with the name "Baby G" — I guess he takes the cake for this one.

The now-defunct girl group was almost named "Diridiri Daradara Duruduru Bop" — what does that even mean?

The five-piece outfit nearly took on names "Meow", "Flower", "Bomb" — thankfully they didn't.

The group chose to forgo the name "Wah Wah Girls", which is great, because they've got a great jingle going on with "MAMAMOO" that they use in all their introductions.

What are some of your favourite K-Pop names? Let us know in the comments below!