“I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” original singer discusses song
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” is a Christmas novelty song written by John Rox and performed by Gayla Peevey (10 years old at the time) in 1953. The song peaked at number 24 on Billboard magazine’s pop chart in December 1953.
Peevey joined Good Morning San Diego to talk about the song and its history.
When released nationally by Columbia Records the song shot to the top of the charts, and the Oklahoma City Zoo acquired a baby hippo named Matilda.
Peevey was filmed performing the song on The Ed Sullivan Show in October 1953, airing on November 15, 1953.