How many names did Sean Combs have? From Puffy to P Diddy

SEAN Combs’ decades of fame have taken him through a series of transitions in his career.

Though his celebrity and rap music peers are no stranger to name changes, Diddy could be one of the stars to have gone through the most aliases.

Sean Combs' stage names have been changed many times over the years


Sean Combs’ stage names have been changed many times over the yearsPhoto credit: WireImage-Getty

How many names did Sean Combs have?

When Sean Combs rose to prominence in the mid-1990s, he was credited as the hypeman behind hits by Mary J. Blige, The Notorious BIG, Lil Kim and Usher.

Around this time, the public referred to him by his stage name at the time, Puffy, his childhood nickname.

As Puffy, he became the face of Bad Boy Records and co-produced several hits with his creative team, The Hitmen.

Puffy and The Hitmen have written songs for Mariah Carey, TLC, Aretha Franklin, Faith Evans and Boyz ll Men.

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puff daddy

By his own admission, Combs considers 1995 to be the Puffy era and early 1996 to be the Puff Daddy era.

In the wake of his mainstream popularity as a hit song producer, Combs released his debut studio album No Way Out in July 1997.

The record spawned the hit singles “I’ll Be Missing You,” “It’s All About the Benjamins,” and the Billboard #1 “Can’t Nobody Hold Me Down.”

The Puff Daddy era ended with his second album, Forever, and the end of his high-profile relationship with Jennifer Lopez.

P Diddy

On March 28, 2001, the artist formerly known as Puff Daddy announced that he was changing his stage name.

While referring to Purple Rain legend Prince and his late friend The Notorious BIG, he told MTV: “No more Puff Daddy – the first week of June we will have a name change ceremony.

“I don’t take it as seriously as Prince does, but I just want something fresh.

“I rock with P Diddy now, my mate Biggie gave me that name.”

Sean Combs departed from Puffy in the early to mid-1990s, adapting the name in 1996


Sean Combs departed from Puffy in the early to mid-1990s, adapting the name in 1996Photo credit: Getty – Contributor

While passing P Diddy, the famous music star only released one album entitled The Saga Continues.

He also appeared in the Oscar-winning drama Monster’s Ball with Halle Berry and Billy Bob Thornton.

He ventured into television with the MTV reality series Making the Band.

That era ended with his Vote or Die campaign, which he promoted during his appearance on the Super Bowl Halftime Show in 2004.

While billed as P Diddy, he discussed the importance of voting while sharing the stage with Janet Jackson, Jessica Simpson, Nelly, Kid Rock and Justin Timberlake.


On August 16, 2005, Combs stopped by the Today Show to chat with Matt Lauer and Katie Couric.

The artist, formerly known as P Diddy, shared that he changed his stage name again.

He told the hosts: “Nobody knew what to call me. I noticed that people were uncomfortable when I first met them and then they asked me what to call me.

“I even started to get confused myself and when I called someone on the phone it took me a long time to explain who I was. Too long.”

The mogul added, “I felt like the P got between me and my fans. We had to simplify it.

“It was, you know, doing concerts and half the crowd said, P Diddy, the other half sang Diddy.

“Now everyone can just sing Diddy. One word. Five letters. Period.”


In November 2017, Diddy announced that he would be changing his public persona again.

In a since-deleted Instagram post, he explained, “I’ve been praying for this and I know it’s risky because it might come across as cheesy to some people, but I’ve decided to change my name again.

“I’m just not who I was before. i am something else So my new name is Love aka Brother Love.

“I won’t answer Puffy, Diddy, Puff Daddy, or any of my other nicknames, but Love or Brother Love.”

However, he let that down with another announcement.

In May 2022, he sat down with Ellen DeGeneres and told the audience, “I think it’s very important that I clear this up.

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“I’ve decided that I’m just going to go by the name Diddy. See Diddy is my nickname. Love is my real name.”

He clarified to viewers that although he had legally changed his real name to Sean Love Combs, he had a change of heart and changed his stage name back to Diddy. How many names did Sean Combs have? From Puffy to P Diddy

Aila Slisco

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