What is Boy George’s real name? Why did Culture Club singer create pop star alias, what other names did he try

Boy George is one of the most recognisable artists of the 1980s

Boy George burst onto the scene as the flamboyant and eccentric front man of the band Culture Club.

At the height of the band’s fame in the 1980s they recorded a series of global hit songs such as Karma Chameleon, Do You Really Want To Hurt Me and Love Is Love. The 61-year-old singer is currently appearing in I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here! And while he remains one of the UK’s most recognisable faces, very few people know the singer’s actual name.

Boy George has used a series of different stage names over the course of his career but what is his real name? Here is everything you need to know.

What is Boy George’s real name?

Boy George has used a number of different stage names in his career. (Getty Images)

Boy George was born in Eltham, London, on 14 June 1961. He is the second of five children. His real name is George Alan O’Dowd but he chose to use the stage name Boy George when he formed Culture Club in 1981.

Over the course of his career George has used a series of stage names - in the late 1970s he was known as Lieutenant Lush in the band Bow Wow Wow and in the 1990s during his solo career he has also used the stage name Angela Dust.

When did Boy George become famous?

In the late 1970s, George’s style caught the attention of music entrepreneur Malcolm McLaren (previously the manager of the Sex Pistols).

McLaren arranged for George to join the band Bow Wow Wow who he was managing at the time. Bow Wow Wow were an English new wave group and their lead vocalist was Annabella Lwin - the group are best known for their 1982 hit Go Wild in the Country.

George only stayed with Bow Wow Wow for a brief period of time and went on to form his own band Culture Club alongside Mikey Craig and Roy Hay and Jon Moss. Culture Club went on to achieve worldwide recognition in the 1980s and in their first stint from 1981-1986 and are viewed as one of the most well known bands of their era.

After leaving Culture Club in 1986, George embarked on a solo career and hit singles with Everything I Own and The Crying Game.

Why did Boy George use a stage name?

Boy George revealed that he simply chose the name while performing with Culture Club in 1981. While the band name was chosen to reflect its members’ various backgrounds.

Back in 2014, during an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Boy George admitted he was firmly against the idea of changing his name now he’s older. He said: “I didn’t want to confuse people by becoming the artist formerly known as.

“Boy George is a brand that I have created and is familiar to people. Heaven knows they’ve had enough confusion. I’m not deluded. I know I’m an older man, but I’m a boy at heart. Life is about learning to be yourself, and I think I’ve gone in this interesting full circle. In spirit, I’m very much back to the person I was when I first started my career.”