I wasn’t part of the first Christmas Queens album, but it was such a success, I guess they thought, “Let’s do number two” and asked me to be a part of it. Last year I didn’t do it because I was singing on RuPaul’s Christmas album [Slay Belles] and I thought, “I don’t need to be singing on everybody’s Christmas album.” But when number two came about, I thought “I’ll do it if I can sing my favorite Christmas song of all time.”
She chose to sing a completely reverential rendition of “O Holy Night” (with Thorgy Thor on violin).
It was almost surreal singing that song because I grew up singing in choir and “O Holy Night” was always, 100 percent, my favorite song. It’s such a pure song. I was raised in a Jewish family but since I was adopted, my parents sent me to Hebrew school and Bible chapel, so I got the best of both worlds — singing in both a choir in Bible chapel and a chorus in Hebrew school. It shaped me and my voice.
[For Christmas Queens 2] my stipulation was, “The only way I’ll do this record is if you let me do this song and do it my way. I want it to be traditional. There’s not going to be any jokes to this. I want it to be beautiful and pure.” And I went full Jesus. I didn’t change it — I wanted it to be what it was meant to be. I am not Mariah, I am not Josh Groban — I’m me. So I’m going to do it and do it the way I want to sing it.
The idea of Thorgy [Thor] being on violin made it that much sweeter of a sound. I did it all originally in one take. He said, “I think we got it” and I said, “Hold on, no, I’m not Patti Labelle, we will not be doing this in one take.” There were things I wanted to sweeten and ways I wanted to sing it differently. At the end of the day, I think it came out really pretty, although I’m picky so I’ll say there are things I would have switched. I think it’s a song people did not expect to be as pure and pretty on a jokey album, so I’m glad I stuck to my guns and delivered it the way I wanted. And that’s the way I’ll deliver it live.