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In early December of 2006, I was searching April Winchell's delectable selection of Seasonal Favorites and came across an MP3 of "The Twelve Days of Christmas" by someone named Fay McKay.

I downloaded it and took a listen. It turned out to be the famous "drunk lady" version that has floated around cyberspace for years. I was grateful that this always hilarious tune finally had a proper credit (Thanks April!).

From there I went to FaLaLaLaLa.com where I typed the following post on December 7, 2006:

"'The Crazy Drunk Lady - The 12 Days Of Christmas'.

"If you've ever surfed a file-sharing program and entered 'Christmas', there's a good chance this song popped up. I'm guessing about 1/2 of the people reading this know about this Internet favorite (or downloaded it like me).

"If you don't, this song begins with indeed a lady who begins to sing 'The Twelve Days Of Christmas' while getting progressively drunker and drunker. By the end of the song, she's reduced to grunts and slurs while you're laughing your head off and feeling intoxicated yourself.

"Guess what? That 'crazy drunk lady' is Fay McKay and she has her own website!

"Ms. McKay is selling her very own 11-track Christmas album with that version of "12 Daze" on it. Plus, each CD comes autographed!

"I was excited to have found her website because yes, I did download this song back in the pre-legal days of Napster. It's payback time... I ordered her album as my way of thanks. Drop in and take a look!"

When I ordered my CD, I sent several questions along in hopes she would answer them. While I waited for the disc to arrive, two new rays of info came to light about Ms. McKay.

The first came on December 21, 2006 from another member of FaLaLaLaLa.com who alerted me to this fantastic film clip found on YouTube:

The film clip was taken from a documentary entitled "LOST VEGAS: The Lounge Era". I did another Google which brought me to a post (also on December 21) at Boing Boing that quoted the creator of the documentary Tim Onosko:

"Our film profiles a group of these guys, and a woman named Fay McKay, a talented jazz singer who became known for her boozy comic parody of 'The Twelve Days of Christmas.' ... She is still alive and living in the desert, in obscurity. It would sure be nice for lots of people to see her do her famous comedy bit. Since it's the season, we've uploaded Fay's bit to YouTube."

On cue, my CD arrived and Fay took the time to answer my questions:

Fay got her start in show business at the tender age of three and half. She went on to perform in 26 countries around the world, every single one of the 50 United States of America, and was the headliner at nine different Las Vegas casinos along the strip in her lifetime (those are Sinatra numbers!).

Her biggest highlight came when she appeared as Liberace's co-star (and 155 other top name stars) at the London Palladium back in the 1960s.

During one night in a smoky piano bar in the late 1960s, she first performed her now classic "Twelve Daze of Christmas". She credits some fans with the inspiration and she ran with it all the way to the bank! It has charmed hundreds of thousands of people since then.

I asked her if she knew how popular this song was. "Of course!" She has heard stories of people pulling over in traffic due to uncontrollable laughter and people who have suffered the loss of bladder control while listening.

She released this album of "Winter Favorites" back in 1968 (I would love to see an actual LP). The first song is, of course, "'12 Daze' of Christmas" which reattaches the long lost intro that many of the online MP3s cut off. I've heard this song countless times and it always never fails to make me laugh - a rare feat for any song.

McKay then covers the basic Christmas songs and her rich voice really comes across, especially her versions of "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" and "White Christmas. There are some hilarious surprises on two of the tracks ("Frosty The Snowman", "Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow") that must be heard to be believed!

My favorite track is her final one - a medley of "It Came Upon A Midnight Clear / Silent Night". You can hear the warmth and solemnity in McKay's voice as she switches from song to song. It's a wonderful medley and a very haunting rendition.

Fay McKay is indeed retired and has experienced some serious health problems in recent days. She still lives in the town she loves the most - Las Vegas. McKay sent me a copy of her "Live In Las Vegas" CD as well, capturing what it's like at 2:30 in the morning in a typical Vegas lounge - fabulous stuff!

My last question I asked Fay: Any special messages you'd like to give to your fans?

"Yes!!! Please buy my CDs! (Hahaha!) I'm thankful for all your support!"

If you loved her version of "12 Daze of Christmas", you'll love her Christmas CD. If you ever laughed out loud over her song, please visit her website to get a CD or simply send her a card or letter.

McKay's CD didn't come with an actual cover (see above) so
I recreated the cover from the small picture on Fay's website.

UP NEXT: We're gonna drop a retro Christmas bomb on you...