Independent baby name blog & directory, est. 2006.
How popular is the baby name Bette in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, see baby names similar to Bette and check out all the blog posts that mention the name Bette.
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‘Veronica’ refers to Costello’s grandmother (not sure if it’s her real name).
(Links open music videos in a new window.)
Which song(s) do you like best? Choose up to 2:
"Rock Me Amadeus" (1986) by Falco (63%, 15 Votes)
"You Can Call Me Al" (1986) by Paul Simon (33%, 8 Votes)
"Luka" (1987) by Suzanne Vega (29%, 7 Votes)
"Veronica" (1989) by Elvis Costello (29%, 7 Votes)
Total Voters: 24
Anyone care to guess which of the name-songs above will be crowned the winner in a couple of weeks?
*”Billie Jean is kind of anonymous. It represents a lot of girls. […] They would hang around backstage doors, and any band that would come to town they would have a relationship with, and I think I wrote this out of experience with my brothers when I was little. There were a lot of Billie Jeans out there.” -MJ, via MTV
**”Where did you get the name from?” “A 9-year-old boy who lives in my building. Who is not abused, by the way. I like the name Luka, it’s universal. It could be a girl or boy and it could be any nationality.” -SV, via NYT
Ready for a March Madness-inspired tournament that involves both names and ’80s music?
We’ll start with 40 songs from the ’80s that prominently feature given names — songs like “Jessie’s Girl,” “Oh Sherrie,” “Who’s Johnny” and “Dirty Diana” — and, over the next few weeks, we’ll whittle them down until we determine which song earns the title of Ultimate ’80s Name-Song.
Here’s the tournament schedule:
March 9-14: Round 1a. Starts with 20 songs. Ends with 4 winners.
March 16-21: Round 1b. Starts with 20 songs. Ends with 4 winners.
March 23-28: Round 2. Starts with 8 songs. Ends with 2 winners.
In a 1960s pamphlet called Baptism and Confirmation, the Church of England warned:
There are some names which have a vogue because of some stage or film celebrity. But it is best to be cautious in imitating them.
It is not a good idea to give children names that may seem inappropriate with the passage of years.
Church of England spokesman Rev. Henry Cooper elaborated:
Many clergymen performing baptisms want to see parents steer away from film star names like Bette, Elvis or Shirley. Perhaps they think it’s a happy choice to name their children after Bette Davis, Elvis Presley or Shirley Temple. But parents seem to forget that Bette is, at best, a contraction for Elizabeth, and Elvis and Shirley are really just meaningless–names for names’ sake.
Cooper especially disliked nickname-names. “Why give your daughter a meaningless handle like Tina or Nina, when the proper name should be Christina?” he asked.
Source: “Don’t Use ‘Elvis’ for Name.” Blade [Toledo] 16 May 1963: 28.