Here we are at the end of another year during which I, among other things, grew a moustache and cold-heartedly razed said moustache to the floor, wrote a new album of songs with The Chapz, ate a fair bit of cheese, learned how to perfectly poach an egg and continued my long-term love affair with walking around a bit and drinking.

Aside from the comprehensive list of activities described above, the band played a few shows in the past twelve months, some of which were flaming good fun (I’m thinking of Pittsburgh, Peebles, Sleazy’s, 2000 Trees, Music Hall of Williamsburg, Seattle (solo) and Rock Ness).

We’d like to say thanks to anyone who came to clap and cheer as we rattled through our verses and choruses throughout 2011. There will be plenty more of that going on in 2012, so keep the ears peeled.

But for now, it is impossible to ignore that we are standing in the midst of ‘A Christmas Hell’.

Baubles, stockings, shiny things, ribbons, latex, masks, beards – it’s all pretty sordid and hedonistic, eh? To celebrate this special time of year, we’ve launched a ton of new merch in our Winter Shoppe. (EU Shoppe / US Shoppe)

To help further spread the Christmas cheer we’ve discounted some of the items in the stores so be sure to check them out.

We hope you like the items, as quite a few of you have (quite rightly) been complaining bitterly over the lack of FR apparel available to buy, and then wear around the town. So fill your boots & stockings, or other people’s boots and stockings for that matter.

There’s lots to choose from. And if nothing takes your fancy, then you are a miserable humbug and I’d like to take you out for a drink some time. You sound great.

Finally, we’d like to say thank you to everyone who has supported us in some way over the course of this year – this probably means you.

When a stranger tells us that the songs we create in musty studios, dining rooms and coal-sheds make some sort of difference – that’s the reason for all this. That and an overwhelming desire to be really, really, really famous (heh heh).

So, cheers to you. Raise a glass of something strong, down it, then get another one straight away. See you next year.

I’ll leave you with this thought, from the brilliant Muddy Waters.

Think on…

I got up one Christmas morning and we didn’t have nothing to eat. We didn’t have an apple, we didn’t have an orange, we didn’t have a cake, we didn’t have nothing.