Gucci Mane, P. Diddy, Prince And More Notable Celebrity Name Changes

Whether or not it was a hint at an identity crisis, Gucci Mane’s short-lived experimentation with the name “Guwop” is far from the only time a celebrity has made a high-profile name change in the prime of his or her career. Below, a toast to 30 stars who opted to do what unborn children are rarely allowed: create a different name for themselves–and at times, an accompanying persona.

  • P. Diddy

  • Prince

  • Ol’ Dirty Bastard

  • 2 Chainz

  • Shyne

  • Madonna

  • The Game

  • Biggie

  • Santigold

  • Common

  • Emeli Sande

  • Andre 3000

  • Mos Def

  • Bow Wow

  • Romeo

  • Cat Stevens

  • Lisa Bonet

  • Malice

  • Mark Duper

  • Lloyd B. Free

  • Chad Ochocinco

  • Ron Artest

  • Kareem Abdul Jabbar

  • Garth Brooks

  • David Bowie

  • Beyonce

  • Bruce Willis

  • Jermaine Jackson

  • Snoop Dogg

  • Gucci Mane

Perhaps a look into his psyche, or maybe just a trick to reveal the true power of social media, Gucci went back on his wish to retire the name he’s built a career around, citing the extreme reaction of his fans as the deciding factor. You also have a movie opening next weekend which has already finalized its credits, but…

From Sean Combs a.k.a. Puff Daddy’s decision to reinvent himself again and again (and again) to aspiring musical legends who escaped years in legal purgatory by adopting their second choice moniker, hip-hop has been greatly affected by the mid-career name changes. And at times it can be difficult to keep up with these switcheroos, but that doesn’t mean athletes with busy schedules are prohibited from ordering a new batch of jerseys to reflect their latest therapist-instructed anger management tactic. We’re looking at you, Metta World Peace. If you take anything away from Gucci’s change of heart, kids, it’s that you don’t have to relive the embarrassment of grade school roll call if you don’t want to.

Related: Selena Gomez Sings “…Baby One More Time” And Gucci Mane Shows Off His Acting Chops: Finally! The “Spring Breakers” Trailer Has Arrived

[Photos: Getty Images]