What Should I Call You?

"What should I call you?" I get this question a lot. Mainly it's because my name is Laura Clapp Davidson. No hyphen. Just my maiden name and married name joined together. This confuses people since they really want me to be a hyphenate or just go by one of the two names. So why did I go this route? Two reasons.

One, I am the last Clapp in our lineage. There were no boys to carry on the name, so I decided that when I got married I would drop my middle name (which now belongs to our eldest daughter) and shift my maiden name into its place. It was my attempt to keep things going for my family, however impractical that may be since it won't go any further than me.

The second reason I kept my maiden name is for professional reasons. I had made a little (ok tiny) name for myself as Laura Clapp and I didn't want her to disappear simply because I had married the love of my life and wanted to take his name.

The tricky part is when people try to figure out how to list me on the bill for a show. Is it Laura Clapp? Laura Davidson? Laura Clapp Davidson? For me, it's always Laura Clapp because that is who I've been as a musician for all of my life. Laura Davidson is great with marketing, strategy and product demos, but she and Laura Clapp don't always mesh well. Strange, isn't it?

The even stranger thing is that I don't really know the answer when someone asks me what to call me. I've been Laura Davidson for 12 years now, and keeping track of which name I use in which situation can be a bit of a burden sometimes. It's also tricky when the person booking me knows me from my work in audio (Laura Davidson) and not necessarily as a performer (Laura Clapp). So then what?

In some ways, it would be so much easier to pick one name and stick with it, but I guess I'm too nostalgic or too stubborn to let it go. Anyone else facing this same dilemma? Let me know by leaving a comment!