How popular is the baby name Dondi in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, check out all the blog posts that mention the name Dondi.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Dondi


Posts that Mention the Name Dondi

Where did the baby name Draven come from in 1994?

The character Eric Draven (played by Brandon Lee) from the movie "The Crow" (1994).
Eric Draven from “The Crow

The name Draven first appeared in the U.S. baby name data in 1994. Rather unusually, it debuted for both genders in the very same year:

Boys named DravenGirls named Draven
1996163 (rank: 853rd)16
1995182 (rank: 797th)16
199454*9*
1993..
1992..
*Debut

Here’s a visual:

Graph of the usage of the baby name Draven in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Draven

Where did the name Draven come from?

The dark movie The Crow, which was released in May of 1994.

The film was set in “some decaying urban hell […] where armed gangs prowl the alleyways and common people are driven inside to merely survive.”

The main character was resurrected rock star Eric Draven. He and his fiancée had been murdered by gang members the night before their wedding. Exactly one year later, Eric rose from the dead to avenge their deaths.

The Crow starred actor Brandon Lee, son of martial arts superstar Bruce Lee. Sadly, Brandon was fatally wounded by a prop gun during filming. He died in March of 1993. The same year, usage of the compound name Brandonlee more than tripled:

  • 1995: 12 baby boys named Brandonlee
  • 1994: 11 baby boys named Brandonlee
  • 1993: 20 baby boys named Brandonlee
  • 1992: 6 baby boys named Brandonlee
  • 1991: unlisted

What are your thoughts on the baby name Draven?

Sources:

(Other dual-gender debuts include Chaffee, Dasani, Dondi, Illya, Rikishi, and Sundown.)

Where did the baby name Illya come from in 1965?

The character Illya Kuryakin from the TV series  "The Man from U.N.C.L.E." (1964-1968).
Illya Kuryakin from “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

The name Illya double-debuted in the U.S. baby name data in the mid-1960s:

 Boys Named IllyaGirls Named Illya
196755 [rank 980th]10
196678 [rank 828th]11
196535*5*
1964..
1963..
*Debut

Illya was the top debut name for boys in 1965. In fact, it ended up becoming one of the top boy-name debuts overall, and it reached the top 1000 twice.

So where did it come from?

The influence wasn’t the movie that gave yesterday’s name Ilya a boost, but the Cold War-era spy show The Man from U.N.C.L.E., which premiered on TV in 1964 and ran until 1968. (U.N.C.L.E. was an acronym for “United Network Command for Law and Enforcement.”)

The main characters were CIA agent Napoleon Solo (played by Robert Vaughn) and KGB agent Illya Nickovetch Kuryakin (played by David McCallum). Illya, a Slavic form of Elijah, was spelled out in the opening credits.

The name Napoleon may have also gotten a slight boost from the show, though it’s hard to tell.

Do you like the name Illya?

(Other dual-gender debuts I’ve posted about include Chaffee, Dasani, Dondi, Rikishi, and Sundown.)

Where did the baby name Dasani come from in 1999?

Dasani water bottles

Bottled water became increasingly trendy in the U.S. during the final decades of the 20th century. It wasn’t until the mid-to-late ’90s, though, that major players in the beverage industry finally hopped on the bandwagon: Pepsi launched Aquafina in 1994, and Coca-Cola followed with Dasani in 1999.

While I’ve never seen “Aquafina” used as a human name, Dasani popped up in the U.S. baby name data right on cue in 1999. In fact, in was a rare dual-gender debut that year:

Girls named DasaniBoys named Dasani
20036718
2002105†28
20019460†
20005837
19999*9*
1998..
1997..
*Debut, †Peak usage

The name, which saw peak usage in the early 2000s, also gave rise to a bunch of variants (Dasany, Dasanii, Desani) and soundalikes (Asani, Masani, Jasani, Tasani, Kasani, Sani).

What does the word Dasani mean? Here’s the official answer, straight from the 1999 version of the Dasani website (archived via the Wayback Machine):

People are having a lot of fun guessing the origin of the name DASANI. One Coca-Cola executive jokingly said it sounded like a “Roman god of water.” Actually, the name DASANI is an original creation. Consumer testing showed that the name is relaxing and suggests pureness and replenishment.

Similarly, an article from early 1999 explained that “the name Dasani isn’t derived from any existing word, English or foreign, but is meant to evoke the idea of freshness and purity.”

What are your thoughts on the baby name Dasani?

Sources:

P.S. I have seen Aquafina used as a stage name: Awkwafina (born Nora Lum).

P.P.S. Other dual-gender debuts include Chaffee, Dondi, Rikishi, Shelva, and Sundown.

Where did the baby name Shilo come from in 1970?

Neil Diamond's album "Velvet Gloves and Spit" (1970 reissue)
Neil Diamond album

Long before celebs Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt popularized the name Shiloh, singer Neil Diamond put the name Shilo (no H) on the onomastic map:

  • 1972: 35 baby girls and 19 baby boys named Shilo
  • 1971: 32 baby girls and 11 baby boys named Shilo
  • 1970: 38 baby girls and 9 baby boys named Shilo [dual-gender debut]
  • 1969: unlisted
  • 1968: unlisted

Diamond’s song “Shilo” was originally and released on the 1967 album Just for You, but his label wouldn’t release it as a single, because they didn’t think an introspective song about an imaginary childhood friend (“Shilo, when I was young / I used to call your name / When no one else would come / Shilo, you always came”) would be a commercial success.

Diamond switched labels in 1968. By 1970, several of his new songs (“Sweet Caroline” and “Holly Holy”) had become big hits.

The folks back at the original label decided to capitalize on this success by giving “Shilo” a different backing track and releasing the new version as a single. This spiffed-up version reached #24 on Billboard‘s Hot 100 chart in April of 1970.

Diamond responded by re-recording the song (“with a quicker tempo, a tighter arrangement, and a bolder, if slightly less expressive vocal”) and including it on the reissued version of his 1968 album Velvet Gloves And Spit, which came out in late 1970 with a redesigned front cover that drew attention to the addition.

The song’s lyrics suggest that Shilo was female, but the name debuted in the baby name data for both genders in 1970. Shilo was the top girl-name debut of 1970, in fact. (Other dual-gender debuts include Dasani and Dondi.)

What are your thoughts on the baby name Shilo? Which spelling do you prefer?

Sources: Shilo – Neil Diamond | Song Info | AllMusic, Neil Diamond chart history – Billboard