13 Celebs Who Changed The Name They Were Born With
Sometimes moms aren’t the best when it comes to picking names to match their superstar children’s personalities. Luckily, these celebs were a little more creative just before they hit it big…
1. Elmer doesn’t have the same ring as Chayanne.
Mom named him Elmer, but she also inspired him to change his stage name to his nickname. A nickname that she heard on a 70’s telenovela titled “Chayenne.” Without this name swap, would millions of women have fallen in love with this boricua hunk in tight pants, singing “Provócame?”
2. Demi is so much cuter than Demetria, isn’t it?
We can all agree that Demetria Devonne Lovato doesn’t have the same ring as Demi Lovato. Her given name is a mouthful and we are very happy she chose to go by something more adorable!
3. Alejandro Sanz condensed Alejandro Sánchez.
After the Spanish singer was signed by Warner Music, the marketing team asked him to change his last name from Sánchez to Sanz: shorter and easier to remember.
4. Armando Pérez, re-baptized himself as… Pitbull.
Yes, the rapper of Cuban heritage changed his name because he considers himself to be like the dog breed: “They bite to lock. The dog is too stupid to lose. They’re basically everything that I am. It’s been a constant fight,” said the singer to the Washington Post.
5. Mayte Rodriguez… Not as badass as MRod.
The fierce star of ‘The Fast and the Furious” franchise dropped Mayte as her first name and decided to be known by Michelle, her middle name. This actress of Dominican and Puerto Rican heritage def chose the right name for a badass Latina.
Peter Gene Hernández Bruno Mars, because yes.
Musical genius Peter Gene Hernández knew that to achieve stardom, you need a name to match. People from the music industry tried to label him as yet another Latino artist and even persuade him to sing in Spanish. That’s when he picked his childhood nickname Bruno and the last name Mars… to avoid stereotypes.
7. Úrsula Hilaria Celia de la Caridad de la Santísima Trinidad Cruz Alfonso (gasp!) had six names before going to Celia Cruz.
The legendary Cuban singer was born with a real tongue-twister for a name. She picked the shortest name and last name and became known to the world as Celia Cruz. Azúcar!
8. Ricky Martin changed his name out of resentment for his dad Enrique José Martín Morales V.
The Puerto Rican singer changed his give name Enrique José Martín Morales IV to just Ricky Martin. He did it while touring with his ex band Menudo and out of resentment toward his father after he pushed Ricky to choose between him and his mother. They reconciled nearly a decade after the name change, but the deed was already done.
9. Marco Antonio became Marc Anthony to avoid namesakes.
JLo’s ex changed his name to Marc Anthony to avoid being confused with the Mexican singer he was named after: Marco Antonio Muñiz. In fairness to his parents, they didn’t have a clue their son would become so famous.
10. Ramón Luis Ayala Rodríguez went with the nickname that stuck – Daddy Yankee of course.
During his early music years, Ramón Luis Ayala Rodríguez had many nicknames: El Cangri, The Big Boss, The King, El Jefe. But the one that stuck was the same one that gave him his stardom status: Daddy Yankee, which in Puerto Rico refers to someone who is very powerful… indeed.
11. José Antonio Dominguez Banderas dropped some extra baggage to become Antonio Banderas.
Antonio Banderas, born José Antonio Dominguez Banderas, is one of the first hispanic actors to become a worldwide celebrity. And as many of the previous celebrities in this list, the Spanish actor needed a shorter name that people could remember easily… that is how Antonio Banderas was born.
12. Juan + Esteban = Juanes
Juanes created his name by combining both of his names. His real name is Juan Esteban Aristizábal Vásquez, but the Colombian singer decided to just keep the first two letters of his second name and add them to his first one. One thing’s for sure: Latinos love giving long and complicated names to their kids.
13. Óscar Isaac Hernández Estrada dropped Hernandéz to avoid stereotypes.
Guatemalan American actor Óscar Isaac Hernández Estrada dropped the Hernández last name to avoid being typecast in stereotypical roles. He’s known as just Oscar Isaac… from the new “Star War” movies. Get it, king.