Every once in awhile someone will ask me why I named my company Bass is Loaded! They’ll sometimes ask in a turned off way, which makes me wonder how they would feel if I asked them “Why did you name your son Roger??” Don’t people know you should never ask people “Why” questions? Why did I name my company that? Why did I not name my business something more personal sounding like Rick Whitehead Entertainment or something even slightly romantic sounding appropriate for weddings? Funny and true story before I answer; in the Fall of 2009 I sat down outside a Starbucks talking with a prospective wedding couple. We were about a half hour into the meeting when the guy (who was doing almost all the talking) looks at me and says, “I have to be honest, I’m a former DJ myself and for weeks now she has been telling me ‘we need to contact this guy! I’ve seen his stuff everywhere and he looks really good’ and I wouldn’t because I HATED your company name.” Um…wow. OK. They ended up booking me just minutes after that
Who knows how many potential clients I have turned away all due to a name. Do people really NOT use a business because of a name? Probably more than we think. Perhaps more disturbing, I once read on a national DJ forum this other DJ goes on a rant saying “I like the quality of this guy’s work, but I hate, Hate, HATE his company name!!” Again, wow. There seems to be angst especially among my national peers, most of whom follow the DJ name template of First Name Last Name Entertainment. That’s just not my style. My business certainly is about me, but then again it’s not. It’s about the incredible caliber of people that I work with. I’ve chosen to leave my own name out of my company name and let my company do the talking for me.
So why didn’t I ever change the name after knowing people hated it? Well, first of all that’s because it’s other peoples’ problem and not mine. If they don’t like it they can move on! Haha. They probably do! I enjoy a good play on words (bases loaded), plus bass is an important part of a sound system. But really it boils down to just good old fashioned brand recognition. After you’ve been in biz so long it takes a very long time for people to get used to a change. To me it was never worth it. Plus I like the fishing references…think about that one I get a kick out of solicitors that call me and say “Um yeah is this…BASS (like the fish)…IS…LOADED??” No sir, I think you have the wrong company. Move along.
So, in the spring of 1990 I was sitting in a high school math class talking to a friend of mine who was working with me on a Senior project which involved sound systems and doing school dances. I knew I wanted to DJ, but I didn’t have a business name and if I wanted to run a business I had to have a name. Instead of working on math that morning, I wrote a name on a piece of paper and slid it across the table to him. There were 3 words: “Bass is Loaded!” Today as I write this blog in 2015, I think about that note that I wrote a quarter-century ago and smile. The name has grown on me, I have a very personal connection with it, and if I’m 100% honest I’m very proud of every part of what I’ve done. For every one person that hates my company name, there are many more that love it – and get it.
Those are just my kind of people.