In the late ’80s, an American exchange student in Sweden named Dean Cushman discovered the Swedish pop duo Roxette. Impressed, he brought a CD of their second album, Look Sharp! (1988), back to the States.
He told a local radio station about the band, and the station began to play the track “The Look” on the air. Other stations soon followed suit. “By the time official promotion began, the song had already soared onto the Feb. 11, 1989, Billboard Hot 100 at No. 50.”
Four singles from Look Sharp! ended up charting: “The Look” hit #1 in April of 1989, “Dressed for Success” peaked at #14 in July, “Listen To Your Heart” became their second #1 song in November, and “Dangerous” reached #2 in March of 1990.
We can see the influence of Roxette’s newfound U.S. popularity on the U.S. baby name charts as well. Nearly 30 baby girls have been named Roxette since in 1989:
- 1994: unlisted
- 1993: 6 baby girls named Roxette
- 1992: 7 baby girls named Roxette
- 1991: 5 baby girls named Roxette
- 1990: 6 baby girls named Roxette
- 1989: 5 baby girls named Roxette [debut]
- 1988: unlisted
Here’s the song that kicked it all off:
Roxette (the name) appeared on the the U.S. baby name charts for almost as long as Roxette (the band) was putting out singles that appeared on the U.S. music charts. The name dropped out of the data in 1994 — the last year that Roxette had a song (“Sleeping In My Car”) in the Hot 100.
Band members Marie Fredriksson and Per* Gessle had formed the band in 1986. The name Roxette came from the 1974 song “Roxette” by British rock band Dr. Feelgood. (Not to be confused with the 1989 song “Dr. Feelgood” by American rock band Mötley Crüe.)
What are your thoughts on the baby name Roxette?
Update: Roxette came back! For one year, anyway. It reappeared in the data in 2012, bringing the grand total of U.S. baby girls named Roxette up to (at least) 35.
*Per is a form of Peter.