10 Famous Rock Songs That Were Almost Called Something Else

How different things could have been for some of these absolute classics.

System Of A Down

Whilst the music is ultimately the most important part, the name of a song is still vital to its success. After all, how can people tell their friends about a cool new song they've heard if they don't know what it's called?

Yes, you could Shazam it, but come on, who under the age of 40 still uses Shazam these days?

No band should ever spend too long agonising over the name of a track, but they should at least put some thought into naming the end result of hours of hard work.

These ten songs all had names to start with, but, for one reason or another, they all got changed before they were released. Some of these alterations were relatively minor, whereas some switched things around completely and shifted the course of rock history in the process.

It's crazy to think that the world came very close to not having these great titles in it, but this just goes to show how fluid the creative process is and how things that seem set in stone can change very late in the day.

10. Aerosmith's Dude (Looks Like A Lady) - Almost Called “Cruisin’ For A Lady”

Serving as the lead single to Aerosmith's 1987 album Permanent Vacation, Dude (Looks Like a Lady) is a very strange song.

If you couldn't already tell, it's about a man who mistakes a fellow man for a woman whilst attempting to make a romantic move on them. The story goes that lead singer Steven Tyler saw what he thought was a woman with long blonde hair in bar one night, only for the "lady" in question to be Mötley Crüe frontman Vince Neil.

The band were originally going to call the song Cruisin' for a Lady, as they didn't want to offend the gay community by putting any male pronouns in the title. However, long-time collaborator Desmond Child hated the idea, saying that Van Halen wouldn't "put that on the B-side of their worst record."

Ouch, what did Van Halen ever do to you, Des?

With Child's (himself a gay man) permission, Aerosmith gave the song its current title, and it would go on to become a major hit.


Jacob Simmons has a great many passions, including rock music, giving acclaimed films three-and-a-half stars, watching random clips from The Simpsons on YouTube at 3am, and writing about himself in the third person.