How Did Korn Get Their Band Name?

Music

How did Korn get their band name? Why is Korn called Korn? Do you know the answer?

It’s such an odd name for a band, especially with its unique spelling. So there must be some story behind it. And several theories for the meaning of the Korn name have floated around for years.

But one story that sounds like it could be an urban legend is the true meaning of the moniker.

Before we dive in, let’s look at another answer the band’s given for their name, which was first scrawled into the unmistakable “backward R” logo by singer Jonathan Davis to look like a child’s writing.

READ MORE: Top 50 Korn Songs Ranked

But since the real story behind the name is pretty NSFW, it seems that Davis somtimes leaves out the actual inspiration for it when asked about it in interviews, instead telling a surrounding tale of how their early manager didn’t like the name.

“The Korn logo came about when we were trying to come up with a band name,” Davis told Revolver. “Our manager at the time, Larry, we told him we were gonna call it Korn, and he’s like, ‘You can’t name your band Korn.’ So we told him, ‘Well, we’re gonna name it Larry then.’ And he’s like, ‘Fuck you!’ I’m like, ‘It’s gonna be either Larry or Korn, you fuckin’ pick.'”

And while all of that is very true, there’s a much more pornographic meaning that led to the actual inception of the band name.

Why Is Korn Called Korn?

Davis finally confirmed the real story behind the name on Steve-O’s Wild Ride. There, the rocker explained the moniker’s true origin despite Steve-O saying he heard it might have come from the word Coroner or Korn’s home county — Kern County, California. But no, it came from a different place entirely. And what Davis revealed had already been floating around as legend among Korn fans.

Jonathan Davis on Steve-O’s Wild Ride!

Davis said that “back in the day” in Korn’s hometown of Bakersfield — Kern’s county seat — he attended a party where he overheard “two gay guys talking about how they loved felching each other [sucking or eating semen out of someone’s anus],” as Tone Deaf reported. Subsequently, the incident became an inside joke for the future Korn singer’s inner circle.

Davis explained, “The one dude was [saying] that he was felching his lover, and the guy shat all over his face, and he had a corn kernel on his tongue. So people that knew the story, they were there, and we just go, ‘Corn.’ And they’d be like, ‘Shut up, dude! Oh, goddamn, no!’ And that’s how the name came about.”

Jonathan Davis Talks to Revolver

Indeed, it left enough of an impression on Davis for him to tell his Korn bandmates about it early on, with the group agreeing that “Corn” was a good band name, albeit spelled with a “K” and written with a backward “R.” (The latter was a suggestion of bassist Reginald “Fieldy” Arvizu, Davis said.)

But is that all? No, in fact, the real meaning of Korn’s name could be that it doesn’t matter what the name is.

Davis told Steve-O, “The whole thinking behind it was like, it doesn’t matter what you’re called. It’s like a punk rock thing. It’s like, fuck, we’ll call it Korn. Who cares? I don’t need any mysterious weird fucking name.”

Korn, “Got the Life” (Music Video)

True or False: Which of These 18 Legendary Rock + Metal Stories Actually Happened?

Rock and metal music is full of legendary stories about certain artists that may or may not have happened, in all actuality. Can you guess which ones are true and which ones are false? Sometimes it’s hard to tell, but we all definitely heard these stories out in the schoolyard at some point. Keep scrolling for the legendary rock tales and their corresponding answers, and see how many you get correct.

Gallery Credit: Philip Trapp

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