How GoGo Morrow Transitioned From Singing Background to Releasing Her Debut Single “In The Way”

GoGo Morrow

AllHipHop caught up with GoGo Morrow in downtown Los Angeles to discuss her roots in Philly, her biggest influences, her sound, her journey to Los Angeles, doing Kanye’s Sunday Service, and more!

GoGo Morrow is ready to step into the limelight as her own recording artist. 

A true music lover at heart, the Philly-bred, Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter has been enthralled with music since she can remember, with a crazy track record including touring as a backup singer for Lady Gaga and Wiz Khalifa, and even having the pleasure of singing at Kanye West’s Sunday Service Choir.

But if there’s one thing you learn from being in the music industry, it’s that everyone’s path is different. GoGo’s journey in itself is a story to tell, but thanks to superproducer Harmony “H Money” Samuels, she would finally land a record deal and release her highly-anticipated debut single titled “In The Way.” 

Released via B.O.E., Universal Music Canada and Interscope Records in partnership with Kenya Barris’ label venture (Khalabo), “In The Way” is paired with a vibrant music video showcasing her signature blue hair, undeniable beauty, and breathtaking vocals. 

GoGo got her name from her favorite character in the film Kill Bill, directly inspired by GoGo Yubari who was a 15-year-old assassin. While the differences are apparent, it’s GoGo’s distinct, buttery voice that serves as her lethal weapon, here to swoon the hearts of all music industry and beyond. And with the release of her highly-anticipated debut single, “In The Way,” she does just that.

AllHipHop: How was it growing up in Philly?

GoGo Morrow: Growing up in Philly was really fun. I had a really fun childhood. I have 4 sisters, so I grew up in a full house of people with my mom and dad. I come from a really musical family, so there’s always music playing. Always somebody singing, always performing, dancing. It was a good time. I went to middle school in downtown Philly. Going to school, I was always around interesting people. 

My middle school teacher told me about this theater program at this place called Prince Music Theater that was downtown, it was a couple of blocks from my school. I grew up singing in church, but that’s the first professional thing I started auditioning for. I joined this theater company when I was 12. From there, I fell in love with singing, performing, and dancing. Because we traveled the whole city, it was really fun.

AllHipHop: Wow, so you’ve been doing this forever?

GoGo Morrow: Literally forever. [laughs] 

AllHipHop: Any specific artists that made you want to do music too?

GoGo Morrow: Absolutely, I remember I was obsessed with Brandy. I used to literally play Brandy’s album over and over again. I remember I got hooked on Never Say Never, I played it over and over again. I had a notebook, literally wrote all the lyrics to each song in this notebook. I used to rewind her riffs and learn how to riff like her. Sometimes, people say I sound like her. I think it’s because of who I studied. I studied several people, but Brandy was my main girl.

AllHipHop: Who else did you study?

GoGo Morrow: I studied Whitney Houston, Deborah Cox, Monica, Destiny’s Child, Beyonce, so many. Actually, a lot of my influence comes from the 70’s. My father loves Motown, so he played Motown in the house all day long. I learned a lot of Temptation songs, a lot of Four Tops, Stylistics, The O’Jays. I’m an old soul because of him. When I went to High School For Creative & Performing Arts,I studied classical music. I have so many different influences: gospel, R&B, classical music. I’m a conglomerate of all those things.

AllHipHop: How would you describe your sound if you could?

GoGo Morrow: If you really listen to my tone, my vibrato is very quick. That comes from my classical training. The heaviness in my voice probably comes from the gospel of me growing up in church. My technique of how I riff or do my harmonies, a lot of that comes from all the R&B I listen to. You put that together, you get GoGo. I don’t know how to identify my sound per se, I don’t think I sound like a lot of people. I have my own thing going on to be honest. 

AllHipHop: Talk about coming to Los Angeles, was that for the music? 

GoGo Morrow: Yeah, that was for music. My real professional career really started when I toured with Lady Gaga. I was a background singer and dancer. Before I got that gig, I’ve always wanted to do music. I was in a singing group with my sisters, but I didn’t think I could really do it. I doubted myself. When I got the Lady Gaga tour job, it fueled this fire. My passion increased now, I gotta do this! I cannot be behind the camera, I have to be on stage and feeling this energy for myself. 

After the tour ended, I had a choice. I could go back out on tour with her when she started again, or I can start my own solo career. I opted to start my own solo career. I really started from scratch. I had no manager, nothing. I’d go around in Philly to clubs and ask “hey, can I perform here?” This one guy said “yeah, you can perform here.” So I put a show together. I didn’t know what I was doing, but I was basing it on what I’d been doing with Gaga. I had friends who were dancers, two of my sisters are dancers. Let me call my friends, call my sisters. Let’s put this show together, figure it out. I started doing shows around the city. Eventually, every show I started making more of a name for myself. 

My former manager discovered me, he saw me at a party then found me on YouTube. He worked for Live Nation, him and I teamed up together. He linked me with a producer he knew, I started creating music. Slowly but surely, he started getting me on these Live Nation shows. I literally opened up for any and everybody that came through to Philly. 

AllHipHop: That’s so tight!

GoGo Morrow: It was really really cool. I did everything. I did Powerhouse in Philly. I performed at the Wells Fargo Center, Theatre of The Living Arts. Literally everything in Philly, this went on for a few years. I reached the point where okay, I’ve done everything. What else can I do? There’s nothing else we did. I even headlined my own show, sold it out twice. I reached the plateau, I didn’t know what else to do. I said “I gotta leave Philly.” I made enough of a name for myself there where everybody’s supporting me, I had a solid fanbase. But every time I did a show, I’d start seeing the same people come over and over again. I had to find a way to reach more people. I went into this depressed phase, I didn’t know what else to do. 

AllHipHop: Were you releasing music at that time? 

GoGo Morrow: That’s the thing. I had songs out, but there was no momentum. Nothing was really happening, so it was no incentive for my producer to keep putting out music. We weren’t really growing. I went to a dark place, praying like “I don’t know what to do.” One day, I got a message on Twitter from this producer. I rarely ever check Twitter.

AllHipHop: Harmony?

GoGo Morrow: Yes, Harmony Samuels! We mutually know two people. Unbeknownst to me, those two people were telling him about me. I’m in Philly being depressed, like “what am I going to do?” Those two people went to him and said “I know this girl back in Philly, she’s really dope. You should link up with her.” After he talked to those people, he said he saw me on the timeline on Twitter and decided to DM me.

He said “hey, hit me up. This is my number.” Harmony Samuels? Why’s he telling me to call him?” So I called them, we had a long conversation. I told him my story. One guy’s name is Ryan Toby from the group City High and Sister Act. The other one’s an actor, his name’s Vladimir Versailles. Ryan’s from New Jersey, Vlad is from Philly. Harmony said “yeah, both Ryan and Vladimir told me about you. If you’re ever in LA, come to the studio.”  

I said “Alright cool, I’ll let you know. I should be there soon.” I hung up, I had to figure out how to go to LA. I went and talked to my mom, she said “well, if you feel you have to go, you better go. You better figure it out.” I called my aunt, she worked at the airport. I said “Aunt Jackie, I need a buddy pass. I have no money.” She’s like “I got you niece, just pay me back in 3 weeks.” My aunt got me a one-way buddy pass to LA. I didn’t know what was going to happen. She said “When you’re ready to come back, just let me know the day before and I’ll get you a flight.” I’m on my way there, now I need to find somewhere to stay. Mind you, I don’t have no money for Airbnb. 

AllHipHop: Were you working at all? 

GoGo Morrow: No, I wasn’t working at the time because I was doing shows. That was my bread. I don’t have anywhere to stay, who can I call? I remembered last time I was here, I met this girl. Her name’s Megan Green, I’ll never forget. We became Instagram friends. I DMed her: “hey Megan, I don’t know if you remember me. I met you last year when I was in LA. I really need somewhere to stay for a week, I have this important meeting.”

Didn’t even have a meeting set up! She said “sure, you can come stay with me. I live by myself in Koreatown.” I said “omg, thank you so much.” I take my flight, I land in LA. I go to Megan’s house, she left a key for me because she’s at work. I’m in this girl’s house that I don’t know, by myself. What am I doing here? Alright, time to text Harmony. I text him “hey, I’m in LA.” I didn’t hear from him for a full 24 to 48 hours. I took a plane to meet this man, he hasn’t even responded. So he finally responds the next day.

AllHipHop: Did you follow up at all or no?

GoGo Morrow: I didn’t, I just left it. I didn’t want to sound too thirsty. I’m going to wait, hopefully he responds. He finally did, hours into the next day. He said “oh hey, I just got to New York. How long are you going to be in LA?” Mind you, it was a Wednesday. He said “I’ll be back Monday, we’ll link up when I get back.” I only asked this girl to stay there a few days. I had to go to her and say “Yo, the guy that I came here to see is not here.” She said, “nah, that’s cool. You can stay another full week. I said “omg, thank you.”

AllHipHop: Wow, that’s awesome.

GoGo Morrow: Yeah, she’s such a blessing. Such a vital part of my story. If it wasn’t for her, none of this would have happened. So I waited for him to get back. In the meantime, I found out a couple of people from Philly were here. I met up with some old guy friends from back home, they’re my brothers in music. They looked out for me, asked if I needed anything. I’m mentioning that because later on, I end up moving in with them. 

I linked up with Harmony, this was the session to determine whether or not he’s really going to work with me. The song was just released, “In The Way.” That was the very first song we did.

AllHipHop: You guys held onto it this whole time?

GoGo Morrow: Yeah, literally almost 4 years old. It’s crazy. We shot another video and everything, it just wasn’t the right time. I’m so happy that we waited. After that, he said “let’s work.” We got into a groove, we started working every day. That’s when I thought, “I cannot go home! I gotta figure something out. If I leave, I’m going to lose this momentum.” I know how LA is: if you’re here, you’re here. If not, I’m moving on to the next thing. I knew I couldn’t leave, it’s my time to be here. I felt it.

Long story short, I ended up with the guys I mentioned: my friend Scott, Ali, Ant Clemons and Dre. They’re all in music, they’re producers and songwriters. They took me in. I was like Cinderella living in their house, cleaning up after them. Cooking, but it was really fun. It was a fun time. I lived with them for, two months then, I found my apartment and then I got a job, and figured it out. I started off the studio every day, until I got the job with Kanye.

AllHipHop: Kanye’s Sunday Service was a moment in time, how was it doing that choir?

GoGo Morrow: That was really cool. One of my friends from back home, his name’s Darius Coleman, was in the choir. He said “Yo, they’re looking for new people. You should come audition.” Also my friend Ant Clemons, he had started working on Kanye. He wrote “All Mine.” Those two friends were engrossed into the circle, I thought that’d be dope to be part of the Kanye family. 

I went to audition, and I got it. We started rehearsals that very same evening. I went to the audition in the morning, we had rehearsal that evening. From there, all my time went to being in Sunday Service. I had to quit my job.

AllHipHop: What was your job? 

GoGo Morrow: I was a nanny. [laughs] But it was fun. We travel. We were away every weekend, doing Sunday Service somewhere. That went on for almost two years, but the schedule became so hectic that I couldn’t really work on my own stuff. Harmony said “Yo Go, what are you doing? You haven’t been to a studio in weeks. Wsup?” I gotta pay my bills, I moved here. I don’t know what else you want from me. 

It was a very hard trying to find balance until the pandemic hit, then everything shut down. Me and Harmony went back in the studio and hit the ground running. We recorded a whole new album. My next single that’s coming, came from that pandemic bunch of songs. After that, I had the opportunity to go back to Sunday Service. I felt I had to focus on myself and really put all my time into it. It was a blessing because I ended up signing my deal.

AllHipHop: Congrats! 

GoGo Morrow: It was great that that happened, but then alright. I signed my deal, but now I can’t do anything because the world shut down. That was also the delay for me, but everything in God’s timing. Here we are. [laughs]

AllHipHop: How does it feel to have your debut single, “In The Way,” out now? I’m sure it was a long time coming. 

GoGo Morrow: Honestly, it feels really good. I’ve been stressing because when are we going to release music?

Then when I saw it about to happen, oh no! Wait, we’re really about to release? [laughs] I got scared. These songs become your babies, you become so attached to them. They’re my stories. Alright, it’s not up to me how anybody feels about them. It’s up to you guys how you feel, I had no control over that so that gave me a little bit of anxiety. 

But the response so far has been amazing. I’ve been getting a lot of DMs from girls, they’re like “this is my story. Thank you for writing this song.” Man, you’re welcome. It was my story, I was simply expressing myself. It’s such a blessing when you can express yourself. That’s the beauty of music, it’s a universal language. It’s always something that somebody can connect to, that’s the most rewarding part.