It would doubtless make for a better discussion if some African Americans contributed to this thread.
In the meantime, the Caucasian guy chimes in:
It has been a long time since I read it, but in The American Language H. L. Mencken observed that three classes of people in the United States could be counted on to come up with given names which are out of the main: Easten High Society types (e.g. Phoebe, Winthrop, Nelson…), “backwoods” white folks from places such as the Missouri Bootheel or parts of West Virginia (e.g. Jethro, Gomer, Billy Bob), and lower class black people.
One reason many African Americans give their children such distincive names, I expect, is that they don’t have much of a readily-available store of ethnic names to draw on, and so have to be creative when trying to give their child a name which seems appropriate for their ethnicity.
I’m of Irish descent, and should I ever have children, I expect to give them names such as Douglas, Neal, Nora, Eileen… There are black people who have my surname, and I expect a lot of them would think it sounded funny to name their child Patrick or Colleen. If they did, the kid would spend their life meeting people for the first time who said things such as: “oh: are you Colleen? I thought you were going to be…uh…taller–I mean older…” There is a kid named Michael Robinson in the class, and one named Demetrious Robinson. Guess which one is black?
Some distinctive black names are obscure Biblical names. Cleophus was one of the disciples who met Jesus on the road to Emmaus. Oprah Winfrey got her name when the name of a character in The Book of Ruth was misspelled.
Some black names which sound like original coinages to many people are, in fact, authentic well-established names from other cultures. I used to work with a woman named Nathilla. I ignorantly assumed this one something her parents had invented; it turns out that in parts of North Africa every Tom, Dick and Harry is named Nathilla (well: you know what I mean). Similarly, in grade school I had a classmate named Makeda. It was not until years later that I learned that Makeda or Maketa is a rendering into English of the name of a historically significant African queen.
Finally, I suspect that at least a little of this is a legacy of slavery; many slave owners, it appears, made an effort to give their slaves rare or unusual names; before he freed them, Thomas Jefferson had a servant named Jupiter. The OP asked about the name Tyrone. This is an Irish name, although not one which is common among Irish-Americans. It means “towering”; hence the various actors named Tyrone Power. I suspect slave owners wanted to avoid confusion or embarassment; it might have been awkward to tell the overseer you wanted “John” to run an errand if you had nine slaves named John, and it might have been embarassing to be giving orders to “Edward” on how to serve dinner if Edward was also the name of the dinner guest you were trying to impress.
Finally, there is the issue of social class. It seems to me, all things be equal, that African Americans who are born poor are likelier to have more unusual names. It is the same with white people. Some people of the lower classes–black and white–make a failed attempt to give their child a “boost” in life by giving them a name they mistakenly believe sounds “classy”; hence the plethora of working class white girls named Madison and Tiffany, and their black counterparts.
Finally, particularly among the ill-educated–white or black–ignorance is a factor. I used to work with a black woman named “Demeterious”. Her parents had thought (1) that “Demetrious” was a woman’s name and (2) that they knew how to spell it. I also worked at the same time with a white woman who always signed her name as “Shari”. In fact, her mother, a fan of actress Cyd Charisse, had named her “Charisse”, mistakenly supposing it was named “Shu-ree-suh”. Similarly, Bette Midler’s mother was a fan of Bette Davis, but didn’t know how she pronounced her name.
Mencken wrote that young interns used to make a game of trying to convince poor and ill-informed women to give their children unforturnate names. The story of the little black girl named “femily” (spelled “f-e-m-a-l-e”) is a very old urban legend, but according to Mencken, there were a number of children named Positive Wasserman. The “Wasserman” was a test for VD.