Tu Morrow, Moxie Crimefighter, Rebel, Kyd, Camera, Pilot Inspektor, Pirate, Audio Science, Denim, Diezel, Banjo – those are just some of the wild or unusual names the world’s most famous people are giving to their kids. When you compare these names to the names most of us choose for our kids, we feel pretty boring all of a sudden – but we’re not alone. In the USA in 2013, the most popular baby names were far from shocking. They were Sophia and Emma for girls, and Jackson and Aiden for boys. Hardly newsworthy names, that’s for sure.
Some places are even cracking down on “creative” names for children. Parents in the northern Mexican state of Sonora are now banned from calling their kids names such as Burger King, Robocop, Circumcision, Rambo or Internet. In 2013, CNN published a list of names that people can’t call children born in New Zealand, which included Mafia No Fear, Anal, King and Messiah. However, they did allow the name Violence and they allowed a set of twins to be named Benson and Hedges after the cigarette brand.
The good news is that many celebrities are open to sharing the origins of the wacky names they choose for their kids. Find out the stories behind why 10 celebrity couples chose unique – and in some cases shocking – names for their babies.
10 Zuma Nesta Rock – Son of Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale
Musician parents Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale named their second son Zuma Nesta Rock when he was born on August 28, 2008. Although the pair have not spoken publicly about the meaning behind their children’s names, many experts have commented on the possible reasons. Zuma is a beach in Malibu, California where Rossdale reportedly had an epiphany that resulted in him launching his career in musical creations. Nesta is Bob Marley’s given name and means “messenger” and reggae is a big part of Stefani’s musical influence. Rock is likely to have something to do with his Rossdale’s music. This pair, worth an estimated $115 million, have three kids together and are known as masters when it comes to choosing personal and meaningful names for their children. Their other kids are Kingston James McGregor and Apollo Bowie Flynn.
9 Suri – Daughter of Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise
Suri Cruise was born on April 18, 2006 in Los Angeles to her actor parents Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes. After the birth of Suri, the couple said that the name Suri is Hebrew for princess and Persian for red rose. Some linguists said that the princess translation is in fact a mistake, and that Suri also means pickpocket in Japanese and horse mackerels in Italian. Holmes now has full custody of Suri after she split with Tom Cruise. Their divorce was reportedly an attempt by Holmes to protect their daughter from the Church of Scientology. Recent reports suggest Suri, who goes to school in downtown New York City, is worth about $5 million.
8 Buddy Bear – Son of Jamie and Jools Oliver
British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and wife Jools are among the celebrities with the weirdest taste in baby names. The pair, estimated to be worth over $225 million, are parents to four children named Poppy Honey, Daisy Boo, Petal Blossom Rainbow and Buddy Bear. The youngest, Buddy Bear, was born on September 15, 2010. Technically, buddy bears are painted, life-size bear sculptures from Germany, but it’s unlikely that's what this famous pair were thinking about when they named their boy. All mother Jools Oliver said about the origins of Buddy Bear’s name was that she had fun choosing it, because she’d only had daughters previously. She was also quoted as saying that she “hates” it when people give opinions on names. “Whatever you call your baby is your decision,” she said.
7 Bluebell Madonna – Daughter of Geri Halliwell and Sacha Gervasi
Former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell initially came up with the name Bluebell because she took a walk around a park a few days prior to giving birth and saw bluebells everywhere. She coupled it with Madonna as a tribute to the singer Madonna. Born May 14, 2006 in London, Bluebell Madonna’s godparents are also former Spice Girls – Victoria Beckham and Emma Bunton. Her father, Sacha Gervasi, was introduced to Halliwell by mutual friend Robbie Williams. The two had a six-week relationship, which resulted in Halliwell’s pregnancy. Halliwell introduced her daughter to the world when she was just four days old by way of a 19-page photo spread in Hello! magazine. She was reportedly paid a six figure sum for the photographs.
6 Shiloh Nouvel – Daughter of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt
One of six children in the Jolie-Pitt clan, Shiloh Nouvel Pitt was born on May 27, 2006. In the Hebrew language, Shiloh (which is theoretically unisex) means messiah or peaceful one while Nouvel means new in French. However, there’s a story behind why the couple chose this name for their first biological daughter. Shiloh was a name that was originally intended for Jolie’s brother, James Haven. As well as that, Jolie has reportedly used the alias Shiloh when staying at hotels. Apparently Brad Pitt chose the middle name Nouvel in honor of the famous French architect Jean Nouvel. At the time of Shiloh Pitt’s birth, place names were skyrocketing in popularity for children’s names. Around the same time, Brooklyn Beckham was born to Victoria and David Beckham, and Kingston Rossdale was born to Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale.
5 Apple – Daughter of Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin
Apple Martin was born on May 14, 2004 to her actress mother Gwyneth Paltrow and Coldplay singer father Chris Martin. This was before the days where weird celebrity baby names were in full swing, and her parents received a fair bit of negative attention when they announced her unusual name. Soon after Apple’s birth, Paltrow appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and spoke about the meaning behind the name Apple. She said that her husband came up with the idea early on in her pregnancy, and the two both thought it sounded “so sweet” as well as biblical and wholesome. She went on to say she was surprised at the “international outrage” over her baby’s name. Apple Martin now has a brother, Moses, who was born in 2006. Moses is the name of a song that Chris Martin wrote for Paltrow in 2003.
4 Blanket – Son of Michael Jackson
World famous pop musician Michael Jackson, who passed away in 2009, named his daughter Paris and his two sons Prince Michael and Prince Michael II. However, Prince Michael II, who was born on February 21, 2002, ended up being referred to as “Blanket” by Jackson. In the 2003 documentary Living With Michael Jackson, Jackson talked about the origins of the eccentric nickname Blanket, explaining that it means to blanket or cover someone with love. Blanket was at the center of controversy in 2002 as an infant when Jackson dangled him from a hotel balcony in Germany. Jackson later referred to the moment as a “terrible mistake”. Blanket grew up on the Neverland Ranch with his siblings and father, and was often seen wearing a half mask to protect his identity. He is now aged 12 and estimated to be worth over $100 million. The identity of his surrogate mother remains a secret.
3 Lourdes – Daughter of Madonna and Carlos Leon
The queen of pop Madonna named her daughter Lourdes and calls her Lola for short. The name Lourdes was a tribute to her mother, also called Madonna, who had wanted to visit the city of Lourdes in France where the Virgin Mary (the Madonna) is thought to have appeared in 1858. Unfortunately she passed away from breast cancer at age 30 before getting to Lourdes. Lourdes Leon was born on October 14, 1996 in Los Angeles. The 17-year-old was spotted just days ago at dancing the night away with brother Rocco at Madonna’s Oscars after-party. Madonna’s other children are adopted and named Mercy James and David.
2 North – Daughter of Kim Kardashian and Kayne West
Despite the Kardashian family being big fans of names starting with “K” (such as Kris, Khloe and Kourtney, Kendall and Kylie), Kim chose North for her baby girl. In a teaser video for reality show Keeping Up With The Kardashians, then-pregnant Kim Kardashian was featured talking about potential baby names for her daughter. She decided against a name starting with K because she was worried about her, her boyfriend Kanye West and her child being called the “KKK”. From there, the unique baby name, which technically speaking means “the highest power” was decided upon. Kim Kardashian has reported that having this baby was the couple’s highest point together so they felt it was a fitting name. North West was born on June 15, 2013 in Los Angeles.
1 Blue Ivy – Daughter of Jay-Z and Beyonce
Born in New York City on January 7, 2012, Blue Ivy is the daughter of rapper Jay-Z (real name Shawn Carter) and singer Beyonce. The meaning behind the name has been the subject of a lot of speculation. However, the word “Ivy” reportedly references the Roman number for the number four, which is IV. The number four is an important one for this tot’s parents, who together are estimated to be worth over $700 million. Beyonce’s birthday is September 4, Jay-Z’s birthday is December 4, the two married on April 4 and one of Beyonce’s albums is called 4. Blue is Jay-Z’s favorite color and he has released three Blueprint albums. Jay-Z even trademarked “Blue Ivy” so others couldn’t profit from that name. He was reported as saying that “people wanted to make products based on our child’s name and you don’t want anybody trying to benefit off your baby’s name”.