From Kanye West To Brad Pitt, Here Are 8 Celebrities Who Have Changed Their Names
Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, around the time he was creating a stir as his much-anticipated 10th studio album kept getting pushed, had made headlines for different reasons, too. In perfect alliance with his eccentric behaviour, he had filed to change his name, legally, to Ye. No last name.
the being formally known as Kanye West
I am YE
— ye (@kanyewest) September 29, 2018
He has been going by that name for a while, however, now, Ye is his legal identity. That request was, of course, accepted by the courts and now the rapper has a new name.
“I believe ‘ye’ is the most commonly used word in the Bible, and in the Bible it means you. So it’s I’m you, I’m us, it’s us,” he said in a 2018 interview with radio host Big Boy. “It went from being Kanye, which means the only one, to just Ye being a reflection of our good, our bad, our confused, our everything.”
He is not, however, the only one in the public eye who wants to control the name people associate with the persona. Here is a list of a few other celebs who have changed their names for their profession.
Lana Del Rey
Originally Elizabeth Woolridge Grant, she believed this name granted more cohesion between herself and her body of works. “I wanted a name I could shape the music towards. Lana Del Rey reminded us of the glamour of the seaside. It sounded gorgeous coming off the tip of the tongue,” were her words.
“John Legend is a nickname that some friends started calling me, and it kind of grew into my stage name. It grew to the point where more people in my circle would know me by that name than by my real name,” he has said about his change in name from the given John Roger Stephens.
Born Destiny Hope Cyrus, she had legally changed her name as she commenced her career at a tender age with Disney Channel’s Hannah Montana and kept the name for her singing career. Cyrus didn’t make her name change legal until 2008, when she was 15 years old, legally changing it to Miley Ray Cyrus. She was called “smiley” by those close to her and she shortened the name further to use it.
Born Mark Sinclair, he was already sporting a well-honed physique, and at the age of seventeen, he became a bouncer at some of New York’s hippest clubs to earn himself some extra cash. It was at this time that he changed his name to Vin Diesel. Good call, Mark Sinclair isn’t nearly as intimidating.
Originally, William Bradley Pitt, the actor decided to drop his first name and use just his middle and last names. He did so, according to a source, acting on a desire to sound more “worldly.”
Born Peter Gene Hernandez, it would take Bruno Mars a few attempts before making his stage name stick around for good. The name Bruno came to him as early as high school, but it would take him a while to touch his last name, in order to avoid labels forcing him into genres upon stereotyping his name. For the switch to Mars, the singer told People, “I was going to go by ‘Bruno,’ one name. Mars just kind of came joking around because that sounds bigger than life. That was it, simple as that.”
Onika Tanya Maraj-Petty is not particularly taken by either one of her monikers; “One of the first production deals I signed, the guy wanted my name to be Minaj and I fought him tooth and nail,” she said. “But he convinced me. I’ve always hated it,” she has said.