Nikki Sixx was the founder of the heavy metal band Motley Crue and was ranked by Loudwire as being one of the greatest heavy metal bands of all time.
Frank Carlton Serafino Feranna Jr.
Born in San Jose, California, Feranna was raised by a single mother, who was a singer in Frank Sinatra’s band. However, he still felt marginalized in his daily life, so he turned to crime as a teenager by selling drugs.
His love of music came from glam rock and heavy metal (with such artists as Alice Cooper, Aerosmith, Cheap Trick, etc.). After buying a bass guitar, he moved to Los Angeles where he would attempt to find exposure, often turning to jobs such as carpet cleaning salesman in order to get by.
He would officially change his name when he started getting more exposure. Eventually he would meet with Mick Mars, Tommy Lee, and Vince Neil, who were the future band-mates of the heavy metal band Motley Crue. After years of struggling with drug addiction, Sixx managed to recover and has discussed it in his memoir The Heroin Diaries.
What is interesting about Sixx is that his name is in stark contrast to his birth name, particularly since the former is lengthy and would appear quite uptight. Though, since it included Jr., then it was his father’s name. Of course, since Sixx’s father had little involvement in his life growing up, it would make sense as to why Sixx would change his name.
As for the name itself, there is a cadence involved, especially since i is the only vowel in his name. This new name actually came from an ex-boyfriend of one of his ex-girlfriends who was in a Top 40 band. I can see how he had to differentiate himself from him while also maintaining separation, especially since there are two x‘s in Sixx.
Image Attribution: Peterson, Christopher. “Rocker Nikki Sixx Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York.” Flickr. Taken on September 8, 2007. CC BY 2.0. Changes include putting in starry background.