The lion sleeps tonight

This version by the popular duo Hippo and Dog never fails to make me smile.

Hippo Sings & Dog Dances to The Lion Sleeps Tonight from Cris Popenoe on Vimeo.

For some reason, I had always thought that this song was performed by a group of black singers from Africa or the Caribbean. Just shows that one should never jump to conclusions. The version we are most familiar with is the 1961 version by The Tokens.

But it turns out that I was not far off. The song was originally written and sung by South African Solomon Linda way back in 1939, but was later covered by many other singers, with The Tokens’ version gaining the most popularity in the west, especially after that version was used in the Disney animated film The Lion King.

Here are The Tokens performing it.


  1. Mano Singham says

    Thanks so much for finding that. It was great. But I thought that I could detect the melody and the background chant throughout the song, except at a slower tempo and with no words.

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