Where did the baby name Gogi come from in 1957?

Gogi Grant album (1957)
Gogi Grant album

In 1956, singer Gogi (pronounced GO-ghee) Grant scored her first and only #1 hit — “The Wayward Wind.” She was also voted Billboard’s Most Popular Female Vocalist that year.

The next year, the name Gogi made its first and only appearance on the SSA’s baby name list:

  • 1959: unlisted
  • 1958: unlisted
  • 1957: 6 baby girls named Gogi [debut]
  • 1956: unlisted
  • 1955: unlisted

Gogi Grant was born Myrtle Audrey Arinsberg in 1924. Here’s the story behind her stage name:

Audrey Arinsberg was using her married name, Audrey Brown, when she signed with RCA. Her manager changed her name to Audrey Grant, and she used that for two months while performing in the Borscht Belt. Then Dave Kapp came up with the name “Gogi.” “He told me, and you can believe it or not believe it, it came to him in a dream,” she reveals. “But Dave used to go to lunch every day in New York at Gogi’s La Rue. Some of Dave’s friends suspected that’s where he got the name.”

The “Gogi” in the restaurant name came from the name of the proprietor, Giorgi “Gogi” Tchitchinadze, a native of Georgia (the country).

Gogi Grant wasn’t too keen on the name Gogi at first:

“I thought it was very stagey,” Grant recalled, “very unlike me. ‘Why Gogi?’ I asked him. ‘Do I look like a Gogi? Do I sing like a Gogi?’ “

One of the first advertising slogans used to introduce the singer to the public, she remembered, was “What Is a Gogi?”

What do you think of the name Gogi?


3 thoughts on “Where did the baby name Gogi come from in 1957?

  1. Gogi is definitely unique. It may have been in use in 1957, but I don’t see much evidence of it since. Do you have any idea what it means?

  2. My husband has an aunt who is known as Gogi, but it is short for Gloria. She was born well before the song came out, but perhaps that is where she got her nickname.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.