Kyo, from

I’ve haven’t mentioned French names much recently, so let’s get back into the swing of things by talking about one of the biggest bands in France, called Kyo. That’s key-oh. My French teacher was a closet fan, and by the end of our first year of A-Level pretty much my entire class had at least one of their songs on their music player, most likely the brilliant Dernière Danse – which my sister also has possession of. It was one of the first songs I learnt the lyrics, or paroles, to.

Remember how I mentioned a few days ago that I only seem to listen to unactive bands? Kyo went into hiatus a few years ago, before I started to listen to them, but they are reportedly going to reunite next year. Whether they do or not is another matter, but it would be a different experience completely to go and see a French-speaking band live in Frenchland.

Speaking of the French word Paroles, let’s quickly give it some attention. The English word Lyric has seen use as a baby name, so why not Paroles? I recently went to see Alls Well… at Shakespeare’s Globe, and a character in the play is called Parolles. Since the play begins in France, I’m inclined to say Parolles has French blood. I do think he’s a quirky choice to consider, and is said PAH-rohll. The French also use the word Lyrique, but I much prefer Paroles, don’t you?

But back to Kyo. The surname Keogh is of relative use in Ireland and is said mostly the same as Kyo. I know this because I was taught, albeit briefly, by a Mr. Keogh. The surname ultimately comes from Mac Eochaidh, and eoch/each is an Irish word for horse. Kehoe is another popular anglicised form of the name. Other variations of the name one could use are Keeho, Keho, Keyo, Kio and Keo.

A while back, there was a story in the newspapers about how a lady gave birth in the car on the way to hospital, so named her daughter Kia after the make of the car she gave birth in; Kia then gave them a free car. The couple reportedly intended on calling her Tilley. It’s not as extreme as the story going around about the baby named Dovahkiin, after a character in a video game, and won a lifetime supply of video games. There was also the case last week about a baby born in the shoe shop Clarks, and was named Ethan Clark. I don’t think he won a lifetime supply of shoes, though.

51 girls were named Kia last year, plus dozens more named similar sounding names such as Kiara and Saskia. There were 38 boys named Clark in 2010 in England&Wales, putting him at #774. The usage of Kyo is less straight forward, with plenty of slight variations being used:

  • 41 boys were named Keyaan
  • 24 boys were named Keon
  • 17 boys were named Keyan
  • 15 boys were named Kyro
  • 10 boys were named Kynan
  • 6 boys were named Keeyan
  • 6 boys were named Keyon
  • 6 boys were named Kyi
  • 6 boys were named Kyon
  • 5 boys were named Keean
  • 4 boys were named Ky
  • 3 boys were named Keo
  • 3 boys were named Kion
  • 3 boys were named Kylo

But, crucially, Kyo did not rank. Nor Keogh, Kehoe or Kio. Keo did, but barely. The likelihood of Ky being used as a variation of Kai is high, given that footballer Wayne Rooney has a son named Kai Wayne. It’s surprisingly, given the nice, almost bouncy sound of Kyo. It’s likely that the average British parent hasn’t a clue who Kyo is, though.

If Kyo does sound familiar to you, he’s also a Japanese name, which they may spell as either Kyou or Kyo. It is both masculine and feminine and means apricot, capital, cooperation or village. The Japanese band, Dir en Grey, has a male lead singer called Kyo.

We’ll end by talking specifically about the band, which is made up of brothers Florian and Fabien, along with friends Nicolas and Benoît. I love the name Benoît, which is basically their version of Benedict, although the nickname Ned is less natural from the former. Florian is another delightfully French pick, coming from the Latin florus, meaning flower. Fabien is also from Latin, and with an equally natural meaning of bean. I think only in a French-speaking country could Fabien and Florian work best.

Categories: Boy Names, French Names | Tags: | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Kyo

  1. Not sure about Parolles — makes me think of ‘parole’; Lyrique I think works better, though that -que ending of French names has always had something of the red-light about it!

    Saskia I like; Kia — well, the car says it all. Like Kyo though.

    Florian and Fabian I’ve loved for years.


  2. Mm, can’t say I’m huge fan of Parolles either! Lyric is okay, and I like Kyo.


  3. namemuststay

    Kyo, and Kio, are great! They could rise with Rio and Koa (and Ace), all sons of Tom Dumont of No Doubt and gaining ground.


  4. Pingback: French Music Scene « Mer de Noms

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