How popular is the baby name Narada in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Use the popularity graph and data table below to find out! Plus, see all the blog posts that mention the name Narada.

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Popularity of the baby name Narada

Posts that mention the name Narada

What gave the baby name Shanice a boost (multiple times)?

Shanice's self-titled album (1999)
Shanice album

During the late 20th century, the name Shanice saw four distinct spikes in usage: two prominent ones in 1988 and 1992, flanked by two smaller ones in 1985 and 1999.

Here’s some of the data:

  • 1994: 782 baby girls named Shanice [rank: 342nd]
  • 1993: 1,345 baby girls named Shanice [rank: 213th]
  • 1992: 1,859 baby girls named Shanice [rank: 167th]
  • 1991: 304 baby girls named Shanice [rank: 700th]
  • 1990: 289 baby girls named Shanice [rank: 725th]
  • 1989: 537 baby girls named Shanice [rank: 452nd]
  • 1988: 938 baby girls named Shanice [rank: 270th]
  • 1987: 140 baby girls named Shanice
  • 1986: 39 baby girls named Shanice

And here’s a visual:

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

All four increases can be attributed to the same thing: mononymous R&B singer Shanice.

The initial uptick, in 1985, corresponds to her appearances on the TV talent show Star Search in 1984. As 11-year-old Shanice Wilson, she competed — at least twice — in the junior female vocalist category. Her performances earned her $5,000 in prize money. (She later said, “When I got that $5,000, you would’ve thought we hit the lottery.”)

Shanice Wilson on "Star Search" in 1984.
Shanice Wilson on “Star Search”

She also appeared on more than a dozen episodes of Kids Incorporated in 1984, but, surprisingly, she didn’t sing on the show — she was one of the backup dancers.

In 1988, following the release of Shanice’s initial singles the previous year, the name jumped into the girls’ top 1,000 for the first time ever. Shanice’s most successful early song, “(Baby Tell Me) Can You Dance,” reached #50 on Billboard‘s Hot 100 chart in December of 1987.

The name’s highest-ever usage, in 1992, was fueled by Shanice’s biggest hit, “I Love Your Smile” (1991). The upbeat song was produced by Narada Michael Walden and stayed stuck at #2 on the charts for three weeks straight in February of 1992. It was also nominated for a Grammy Award in the “Best Female R&B Vocal Performance” category, but lost to a song by Chaka Khan.

Here’s the music video:

The name’s peak usage was also bolstered by the 1992 songs “Silent Prayer” and “Saving Forever for You,” which topped out at #31 and #4 (respectively) on the Hot 100.

The final uptick, in 1999, corresponds to Shanice’s last Hot 100-charting song, “When I Close My Eyes,” which climbed to #12 in April of 1999.

What are your thoughts on the name Shanice? Would you use it?


Where did the baby name Turiya come from in 1974?

The collaborative album "Illuminations" (1974) by Turiya Alice Coltrane and Devadip Carlos Santana.
Turiya Alice Coltrane album

The rare name Turiya has appeared in the SSA’s baby name data just twice so far, in 1974 and 1975:

  • 1976: unlisted
  • 1975: 7 baby girls named Turiya
  • 1974: 6 baby girls named Turiya [debut]
  • 1973: unlisted
  • 1972: unlisted

Where did it come from?

Signs point to Alice Coltrane, who wasn’t just the widow of famous jazz saxophonist John Coltrane, but also an accomplished jazz musician in her own right. She played piano and organ professionally starting in the early 1960s, and later learned to play the harp as well.

Following the death of her husband in 1967, Alice did two things: she “devoted herself to Vedic practice,” and she began recording albums as a bandleader (instead of as a sideman).

In the ten years that followed, she released about a dozen albums on Impulse! and Warner Bros., many of them masterpieces that imagine a meeting point between jazz and psychedelic rock, gospel traditions and Indian devotional music.

So how does “Turiya” fit into all this?

At some point in the early ’70s, Alice adopted the name Turiyasangitananda, which she translated as “the Transcendental Lord’s highest song of bliss.” The Sanskrit components of the name are: turiya, meaning “the fourth (state of the soul),” sangita, meaning “music,” and ananda, meaning “bliss.”

The shortened version, Turiya, soon started appearing in song titles: “Turiya & Ramakrishna” (1970) and “Galaxy In Turiya” (1972).

But its most prominent appearance came in 1974 with the album Illuminations, which was co-created by “Turiya Alice Coltrane” and “Devadip Carlos Santana.” (In Sanskrit, deva means “god,” dip means “lamp” or “light.” Like Narada Michael Walden, Carlos Santana was a follower of Sri Chinmoy.)

Though Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda eventually left her professional music career to head a spiritual community — not to mention raise four children (Michelle, John Jr., Ravi and Oranyan) as a single mother — she never stopped making music.

What are your thoughts on the baby name Turiya?

Sources: Alice Coltrane – Wikipedia, Alice Coltrane’s Devotional Music, Alice Coltrane – Discogs

Where did the baby name Narada come from?

Narada Michael Walden's album "Awakening" (1979)
Narada Michael Walden album

The Hindu name Narada first appeared in the U.S. baby name data in the late ’70s:

  • 1983: 19 baby boys named Narada
  • 1982: 18 baby boys named Narada
  • 1981: 29 baby boys named Narada
  • 1980: 48 baby boys and 7 baby girls named Narada
  • 1979: 19 baby boys named Narada [debut]
  • 1978: unlisted
  • 1977: unlisted

Where did it come from?

Musician and producer Narada (pronounced NAH-ruh-duh) Michael Walden.

His most successful songs, “I Don’t Want Nobody Else (To Dance with You)” and “I Shoulda Loved Ya,” were both released in 1979. Both reached the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at 47th and 66th respectively. Both also reached the top 10 on Billboard‘s Hot Soul Singles chart, peaking at 9th and 4th.

He went on to have a successful career, being nominated for a total of eight Grammys and winning three (two in the ’80s, one in the ’90s). He produced music for people like Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Lionel Richie, Ray Charles, Al Jarreau, Gladys Knight, Shanice Wilson, Tevin Campbell, etc.

He was born Michael Walden in Michigan in 1952. In the early ’70s, he became a devotee of Indian guru Sri Chinmoy. Chinmoy gave him the spiritual name Narada, and Walden chose to use Narada as part of his stage name. (Carlos Santana, another follower, went by “Devadip Carlos Santana” for a time.)

In Hindu tradition, the character Narada is a sage and musician. He is portrayed “as both wise and mischievous, creating some of Vedic literature’s more humorous tales.”

Do you like Narada as a baby name? Would you use it?

Sources: Narada Michael Walden – Wikipedia, Narada Michael Walden – Billboard, Arunachal butterfly named after Narada, SSA