RuPaul, the renowned American singer and drag queen, captivated audiences with his 1997 Christmas album, "Ho Ho Ho," also recognized as "VH-1 Presents RuPaul: Ho Ho Ho." Comprising thirteen tracks, this masterpiece featured ten renditions of beloved Christmas standards and carols, alongside three original compositions by Joe Carrano and RuPaul.
Critics lauded the album for its delightful blend of cheerful humor and heartfelt renditions, often citing tracks such as "All Alone on Christmas" and "Hard Candy Christmas" as standout examples of the album's range. Recorded in the cozy ambiance of RuPaul's New York City living room, the album was a testament to the infectious chemistry between RuPaul and fellow American singer Michelle Visage, as they infused their unique interpretations with both campy flair and genuine sentiment.
Upon its release, "Ho Ho Ho" received acclaim from music critics. Shawnee Smith of Vibe commended the album's ability to lift spirits, while Ken Veeder of The Advocate celebrated RuPaul's reimagining of Christmas classics through an authentically "gay" lens, singling out the track "I Saw Daddy Kissing Santa Claus" as a favorite. E! News' Joal Ryan hailed the album as a boundary-pushing Christmas release, while Billboard's Melinda Newman praised its humorous take on the genre, labeling it a novelty record.
In the United States, "Ho Ho Ho" peaked at number 27 on the 'Heatseekers Albums' Billboard chart, making a memorable mark with over 4,000 copies sold in a single week. The remix of "Celebrate" added to the album's success, reaching number 31 on the Billboard 'Dance Club Songs' chart on October 11, 1997, and remaining on the chart for seven weeks.