How Young the Giant Changed the Formation of Band Names With Just One Word

July 26, 2018

By Lauren Marques/Joe Cingrana

Have you ever wondered how Young the Giant got their name? Kevan Kenney uncovered this answer and more when the band stopped by for an interview in the ALT 92.3 Theatre.

Young the Giant didn't always go by the name we all currently know and love. Formerly known as "The Jakes," Sameer, Payam, and Eric talked us through their process of changing the band's name and how that change affected the rest of alternative rock.

See Also: Young The Giant Share Mind-Bending “Simplify” Video

The group admits that their former name didn't represent the music they were producing at the time, and they wanted to try something different. Sameer explained that since they formed the band in 2004, "there was like this stupid boldness of being young," which eventually inspired their name change. Eric chimed in, "We started as a 'the' band and we were like, 'why don’t we have a 'the' in the middle?' No one is doing that!"

Little did they know this decision would possibly influence other rising alternative acts. "Our first tour was with Minus the Bear, and we went on to play shows with Foster the People, Cage the Elephant, Portugal the Man…"

Young The Giant with Kevan Kenney (Joe Cingrana/WNYL)

The guys also shared some of the artists that personally inspire them, admitting David Bowie and Radiohead are just some of the musical acts they turn to when struggling with their sound. Over the last 14 years, the band has dealt with their fears of failure when evolving -- but clearly they're doing something right, since fans continue to beg for more music and live shows.

Sameer, Payam, and Eric also discussed their upcoming fall tour and expressed excitement for their two Brooklyn Steel shows. Although the band has never played this venue, they're always grateful for playing the same venue two nights in a row -- because it gives them an opportunity to get comfortable in the city and the venue itself. Eric said he is most excited to spend time with the tour crew and experience the city, since they don’t have to break down the set after the first night.

For a band that started on the idea that they were "gonna live together and like, try and do this," they surely have created sounds and live experiences that won over the hearts of music fans worldwide.

While we’re sure you’re wondering why Young the Giant is going on tour with only their recent release “Simplify” in their back pocket, with a whirlwind of "maybe's" and "soon’s" when asked about new music, we're left to suspect there will be an album coming by the end of the year.

For upcoming tour dates, visit