Where did the baby name Zoejane come from in 2004?

Zoe Jane Lewis, daughter of Aaron Lewis, lead singer of the band Staind
Zoe Jane Lewis (born in 2002)

The compound name Zoejane first appeared in the U.S. baby name data in 2004:

  • 2006: 8 baby girls named Zoejane
  • 2005: 15 baby girls named Zoejane
  • 2004: 6 baby girls named Zoejane [debut]
  • 2003: unlisted
  • 2002: unlisted

(Most of these babies were probably named Zoe Jane or Zoe-Jane, but the SSA ignores/omits things like spaces, hyphens, and mid-name capitals.)

Beyond the general trendiness of the name Zoe at the time, what was the specific influence behind the debut of Zoejane?

My guess is the rock ballad “Zoe Jane” (2003) by post-grunge band Staind.

Though it failed to chart as a single, “Zoe Jane” was included on Staind’s album 14 Shades of Grey, which reached #1 on the Billboard 200 chart in June.

Here’s the song:

The song was written by Staind singer Aaron Lewis for his first child, Zoe Jane Lewis, who was born on April 5, 2002 — the same day that Layne Staley, one of the lead singers of the grunge band Alice in Chains, died of a drug overdose.

Fate works in strange ways. Not only was Alice in Chains one of Staind’s biggest influences, but when Lewis was growing up Staley was his major source of inspiration, which is why Lewis felt compelled to write “Layne,” a tribute to Staley.

The lyrics of the song “Layne,” which was also on 14 Shades of Grey, mentions this coincidence:

And on that day, a child was born
To someone who you helped along

Lewis and his wife went on to have two more daughters, Nyla Rae and Indie Shay, over the next few years.

What are your thoughts on the name Zoe Jane?

P.S. Another rock band frontman’s firstborn daughter, Nevaeh, also had an influence on U.S. baby names in the early 2000s…

P.P.S. The unrelated book Fifty Shades of Grey came out eight years after (and offered 36 more shades of grey than) the Staind album 14 Shades of Grey.


Image: Screenshot of Zoe Jane Lewis from the music video for “So Far Away” by Staind

2 thoughts on “Where did the baby name Zoejane come from in 2004?

  1. Zoe Jane is cute. I like it much more than the two other kids’ names, and about 8000 times more than Nevaeh.

    I know another name-related connection to Layne Staley, which I just found when watching a series box set from the beginning. In season 1 of Homicide: Life on the Street, there is a victim named Lane [sic] Staley. An episode later, there is a suspect named Chris [sic] Novoselic. I guess David Simon was having a laugh at those who watch network tv, wondering how many of them would be familiar with grunge scene big names. Or maybe it was just a tribute.

  2. How funny you noticed that! I wonder how far they went with it — how many other grunge names they were able to sneak in there…

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