I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas (Columbia, 1953)

Track of the Day will be on hiatus for Northwestern’s winter break (Dec 16-Jan 5), but to tide you over, here’s a wacky Christmas track picked by Freeform producer Jamie Lee.

In my experience, this Christmas novelty song is very divisive; first-time listeners either can’t stand the song and label it as “annoying,” or absolutely love the song for its blatant and intentional goofiness and inherent humor in its subject matter. Even among radio stations that play Christmas music during the holiday season, the likelihood of hearing the familiar trumpets of “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” is extraordinarily low due to its obscurity. Although Gayla Peevey is the original, and perhaps most recognizable, artist behind the song, the song has been covered by a few others, including Captain Kangaroo (Bob Keeshan) and The Three Stooges.


Happy Holidays from the WNUR family! See y’all in January!


  1. Mia says:

    I was in the car around 5:50ish and I loved the band that was playing but I missed their website name. They were called shallow boi and I can’t find them anywhere!


Hey, don't be a jerk on the internet.