Revisiting Celebrity Baby Names Sparrow and Harlow

Now this is intriguing. Musician Joel Madden, father of baby Sparrow, had this to say about Sparrow’s name in the most recent issue of People:

My worry raising a son in Hollywood is what will he have to struggle for? I wanted to give him a name that he’s going to have to stand up for.

Call me crazy, but I appreciate his reasoning. I like that he was thinking beyond style in considering the potential value this name might have for his son. He wants Sparrow to be able to defend himself, and his identity, when he’s older. That’s a good thing.

That said…I don’t know if an unusual (and gender-less) first name is the best way to teach a child — a young boy — how to “struggle for” something. Because an unusual name will often mess with a child’s self esteem. If the plan backfires, Sparrow could grow up hating his name, hating his parents for giving him the name, etc.

But I hope it works. I hope Sparrow learns to take pride in his name, and I hope his name somehow helps him take pride in himself.

4 thoughts on “Revisiting Celebrity Baby Names Sparrow and Harlow

  1. All I can think of is “A Boy Named Sue”.

    Harlow does make me think Jean Harlow but it also is far to close in sound to Harlot and Harlequin (as in the Romance books). I think if you did a poll most people would say their gut reaction is that Sparrow is a girl’s name.

  2. I did think of Jean Harlow…and even the song “Vogue” by Madonna plays in my mind every time I see that name. Harlequin brings to mind the Joker’s mislead lover/side kick from the bat man series.

    However, I see Sparrow, and my gut reaction is ‘little brown bird’, course, that may just be my forestry background talking. Something to fight for seems a bit harsh for a baby, sparrow also makes me think of pipsqueak or someone who is small and weak or easily over powered. Not so much hyper masculine.

  3. It’s obvious Joel is a liar! He chose the name because he wanted to be appear ‘cool’ . They all compete on who can come up with the ‘coolest’ most original name. Bronx, Kal-el, Apple, Sparrow, poor children! There are other cool names they could have chosen that are not ridiculous. I for one, like very uncommon old names, i have not heard of one celebrity going with this theme, except Angie Jolie with Vivienne.

    Harlow i do like though,but Sparrow? It would have been awsome if they had gone with the theme of old hollywood, and chosen something like Marlon / Brando / Marlo, Gene, Charlton etc. but oh well.

  4. I named my daughter (sparrow) back in early 2008 altho i spell it Spairro to me it means free adventours

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