What’s in a name?
Do you know who Henry McCarty is? How about David Jones? Henry was a lot more famous, and known a tad longer, but David earned a lot more money.
Would it help if i were to tell you that young Henry was rather well-known before he ever turned 16, and became one of America’s original heroes? Though he may not have been as famous as Jesus, like The Beatles were, according to John Lennon in a televised interview (Not to be confused with Joseph Stalin’s son, John Lenin) or as world-widely known Muhammad (who is? Aside from God, he’s the most famous ever! Okay? No need to call a fatwa on me, now!). He was more famous than Wyatt Earp or Jesse James could every dream of. The young, irascible Henry McCarty, a “man’s man”, a gunslinger’s gunslinger, has the one name that is as famous, or infamous, as Robin Hood, Peter Pan and Ishmael (he of “Call me Ishmael” fame) put together (Robinshael Han?).
Not ringing a bell? Much like David Bowie, who changed his name because there was this idiot who was hired to play a musician on a new (for the time) concept for a television show; to follow a band as they write, record and play music and as they generally wreck the neighborhood and kiss the dancing girls. David Bowie’s real name is, of course, David Jones, the same as that Monkee of “Daydream Believer” and “Last Train to Clarksville” fame. And, of course, that ridiculous little TV show that morphed into a few movies, “The Monkees”. David Jones, the real musician, liked the original mayhem knife of the old west, the “Bowie” knife, and henceforth was known as David Bowie. And we move on with the old west theme again.
What’s in a name?
Quite a bit, otherwise we’d be listening to David Jones singing “The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars”. I don’t think Anne Murray would have covered any of his songs, the way she did with a few of David Jones’s songs, from his Monkees days. Well, to his
credit credibility manager’s orders, he reduced his name down to “Davy” – but, as always, I digress (I would probably digress about digressing while writing about digressibilitation (yeah! another new word! I make up a new word for every post that I can, on top of my daily feature “Word of the Day“,where I try to come up with new, fake blog-related words and acronyms).
However, Mr. McCarty is a little more well known that either Mr. Jones’ is. More infamous than Robin Hood though? Possibly. More infamous than any or all of the American Presidents, dead and alive (the first preferred, the latter only when required)? Yes, yes he was. So, have you heard of Henry McCarty?
What’s in a name?
Aside from brand recognition, like Nike, Coke (no, not that coke…) or Blackberry, when you’ve got a name that stands out, people remember you. So, William Bonney was a lot better a name than Henry McCort, no? How about when he started referring to himself the same way the law was referring to him? The first wanted poster with his picture on it appeared when young Henry was just 16 years old. What a kid! (hint, hint).
I’m sure that you’ve heard of the feud between the McCoys and the Hattfields? A long-living feud that was defined by their shoot to kill, shoot on site and rape at will mantra, and was reconciled in the 1980’s by their still living direct descendants (I know, eh?). But still, even over Doc Holliday, Wyatt Earp and even Wild Bill Hickok, any of the Younger clan and maybe even more well known than the Kardashian sisters, Henry McCarty changed his name to William H. Bonney.
You see, young Henry McCort finally did change his name to what was on all of those wanted posters. Brand recognition before brands became popular?
Young Henry was, of course, Billy the Kid.