Dedication Not Medication

Lyrics

(1)   

And Pierce Brosnan how dare you prescribe 
Sad grief and bed wet pills? (2)
Good grief bed wet  (3)
Sad grief bed wet...pills

Hurly Wurly how can you prescribe
Sad grief and bed wet...pill? 
Rayland Wordley how dare you prescribe sad grief bad chest
Sad grief bed wet ... pills? (4)

Ringler Worthy how dare you prescribe me
Bed wet pill and deep grief?
Connie Cookie how could you subscribe (5)
Bed grief wet pills?
Bad grief, bad wet
Bed wet...pills
Bad luck
Zip up!
Curly
Bed wet good grief
Good grief bed wet
Zip up
Zip up

 

LP VERSION:  (6)

MES: What'd I say to you? For a change, we're put in a good position here. Because... it's actually something good we could work with... ya know, it doesn't mean... ya know...

Other: You're a major player here, Mark. You could change the entire direction in one move. And I think it's not often that we're at this point this early in the procedure....

MES: What about the corporation?

O: Con...Connie and Cookie?...Erm, they subscribed.

MES: Say- we've got to thank them for their full....

O: (laughing) Their full cooperation... 

O (with MES dictating in the background): ...with the fall and their associates.

MES: I would say the anti-Fall-ization. I would say the anti-Fall.

O:Anti-Fall? Anti-Fall association. Their full cooperation with the anti-Fall association.

MES (singing): Curly wurly how could you prescribe
Bad grief and bed wet

Connie Cookie how could you subscribe
Bad grief, bad pills
Bad grief
Bed wet... PILLS! 

Wurly wurly how dare you prescribe
Bed wet, good grief
Good grief, bed wet
Zip up! Zip up!
 

Notes

1. At one point "Dedication Not Medication" was the working title of the Fall album that was released as Sub-Lingual Tablet. The song was originally called "Bumblebee" when it debuted in Augest 2014. In September of that year the Fall toured in front of a backdrop which read "Dedication Not Medication. You Decide."  Would it be pedantic to point out that, if "You" were really the decider, it perhaps should have read "Dedication Or Medication"? If so, a thousand pardons. 

From Q magazine, 2015:

“I took this orange speed,” he begins, unbelievably, but the detail of the story is lost within the whirlpool of his voicebox. The gist is: the orange speed, taken some time ago, slowed his urinary function. Amazing. One of his new songs, Dedication Not Medication, deals with the reverse of this condition, accusing “Pierce Brosnan” of prescribing “bedwetting pills.” It’s about Smith’s doctor.

“I’ve always thought the most dangerous drugs are prescribed antidepressants,” he says. “They tried to prescribe me some, for my chest, to stop smoking. That was the final straw. Luckily, I’ve mates who know about pharmacology, as you can imagine…”

See comment number 17 below, where fall fan links to a video of Ray Davies at Glastonbury in 2010 singing "Dedicated Follower of Fashion": "That's dedicated, not medicated..."

Antoine finds a strong resemblance between this song and "Cold November" by Paradox Obscur:

"The Paradox Obscur album came out on June 25, 2014 and according to Reformation! the first performance of "Dedication Not Medication" was on 30 August 2014, Fibbers York... I could easily imagine Eleni (seems to me this would be her kind of thing) playing this at home and Mark saying 'I want one like that!' as usual."

They are Greek; I don't know if that makes it more likely Eleni would have heard them, but maybe...

^

2. It is possible that the pills in question are anti-depressants, as these are sometimes prescribed for bed wetting (they sometimes help the problem but it is unknown how they do so). The two chief drugs prescribed for bed wetting are DDAVP, which decreases both thirst and urine production, and Tofranil, which is an anti-depressant.

Brosnan plays a physician in one movie--the laughable Stephen King adaptation Lawnmower Man. Antoine runs it down for us:

"Could Mark be making a reference to the awful Lawnmower Man film? As far as I can make out on IMDB, it's the only time he's played a doctor, which struck me as unlikely but it seems to be the case. And in the awful movie, he does use weird drugs to make these lab chimps super-aggressive and super-intelligent so they can be used as weird future weapons, or something like that. I also definitely remember reading an interview in which he mentions his doctors trying to prescribe antidepressants in an effort to get him to stop smoking. It might have been a scanned PDF on the Fall site, because my Google searches aren't turning anything up, I really wish I could find it. In any case antidepressants are sometimes used by folks trying to quit."

Brosnan became the focus of disapprobation for his role in advertising Pan Bahar in India. The product is a "mouth freshener" (apparently a mixture of areca nut and spices) which has been "linked" to tobacco and mouth cancer. The news reports are incredibly shoddy, as the nature of this "link" is not made clear, with some reports suggesting that people like to mix it with tobacco, and others implying the product itself contains tobacco (which the company denies). The whole thing is a farce, and the farcical part is the news reports, which are clearly all cribbed from the same source, as they all use some variation on the laughably vague, if not meaningless, formulation "linked to tobacco products." An encouraging outlier is the Economic Times of India, whose intrepid reporters seemingly can be trusted to at least use Google before going to print; they maintain that areca nut itself has been linked to cancer, perhaps correctly. Although no one knows exactly what the scandal is about, Brosnan apologized for good measure, claiming to have been duped. 

 

I had to tell you that to tell you this: according to the27points on the Fall online forum, the side effects of this product "include toxicity symptoms such as increased saliva production, increased tearing, sweating, diarrhea, flushing, fever and...  incontinence. So the former Bond is to some degree dealing out sad grief and bed wet pills. How dare he!" 

Smychka Mayaqkovsky points out that the title line appears in "Nothing for Me" by Romeo Void (1981):

Dedication is the topic of the day
Dedication is what we need
Dedication not medication
Dedication not medication is what we need
But there's nothing for me

 


Thanks to The BEF for transcribing.

^

3. It struck me tonight how odd a locution "Good Grief!" is. A Google search convinced me that it originated as a euphemism for "Good God!" There's no evidence either way, as far as I could discover, but because of the phonetic similarity it seems very probable...a lot of euphemisms that replace oaths seem to be chosen for sound more than sense (in my youth I remember sometimes hearing people exclaim "Cheese and Rice!" Say it aloud if you are unsure why).
Anyway, the lyrics here take a few phrases and spin them around and alter them in a similar way: sad grief, bad grief, bed grief, bed wet, I even think I hear "bad wet" in there somewhere...

John Howard points out that the expression "Good Grief!" is associated, perhaps preeminently, with Charlie Brown.

^

4. I am very unsure about the names after "Pierce Brosnan." There is a video in which MES's lyric sheet can clearly be seen to read "RIngler Worthy," though.

^

5. It has been speculated that this could refer to Conway Paton and Stefan Cook, the proprietors of the Fall Online Forum, which is very much the unofficial Fall site. It used to be official, but MES broke with the admins in 2006...

But looky looky, here comes...Bert:

Hard to argue against "Connie Cookie" being about Conway/Stefan, but I'll try an alternative theory anyway. When I first heard this line, I immediately thought of "Kookie, Kookie -- Lend Me Your Comb" by Edd Byrnes and Connie Stevens. This song is referenced in the original lyrics to "The Mummy" by Bob McFadden, which The Fall covered (without the lyric in question) as "I'm A Mummy."

^

6. Thanks to Titfordshire for this transcription,  which I have slightly altered where I hear different. 

According to rik the other voice is Alan Wise; Reformation! has it as Simon "Ding" Archer, who has many more recent attested Fall appearances, however.

^

Comments (42)

Bert
  • 1. Bert | 30/05/2015
Hard to argue against "Connie Cookie" being about Conway/Stefan, but I'll try an alternative theory anyway.
When I first heard this line, I immediately thought of "Kookie, Kookie -- Lend Me Your Comb" by Edd Byrnes and Connie Stevens (http://youtu.be/3gDT2Xk5-Oo).

This song is referenced in the original lyrics to "The Mummy" by Bob McFadden (http://youtu.be/HTvpQjl8SWw), which The Fall covered (without the lyric in question) as "I'm A Mummy".
bzfgt
  • 2. bzfgt | 17/07/2015
Thanks, Bert--you're the utmost!
Titfordshire
  • 3. Titfordshire | 05/10/2015
The version of this song on the vinyl copy of the album is completely different. It starts with an instrumental of the track and is then followed by another instrumental version which has Mark E Smith talking with another man over the top of it. It sounds like a mixture of discussion and then MES telling him what to say.

Here's the best I can transcribe. I confirms the 'Connie and cookie' bit

MES:
What'd I say to you
For a change,
We're in a good position here
Because..
It's actually Something good we could work with...
Ya know It doesn't mean,
Ya know

Other bloke:
You're a major player here Mark
You could change the entire direction in one move
And I think it's not often that we're at this point in the procedure....

MES: What about the corporation?
O: Connie and Cookie?...Erm, they subscribed.

MES: Say- we've got to thank them for their full....
O: (laughing) their full cooperation
O(with MES dictating in the background): with the fall and their associates
MES: I would say the anti-fall asation. I would say the anti-fall
O:Anti-fall?
Anti-fall association.
Their full cooperation with the anti-Fall association.

MES (singing):
Curly wurly how could you prescribe
Bad grief and bed wets

Connie Cookie how could you subscribe
Bad grief
Bad pills
Bed grief
Bed wet
PILLLLSS

Wurly wurly how dare you
Bed wet, Good Grief
Good grief, bed wet

Zip up
Zip up
rik
  • 4. rik | 23/11/2015
The other spoken voice on the LP version is Alan Wise ( promoter).
bzfgt
  • 5. bzfgt | 06/12/2015
Rik, how do you know this?
nairng
  • 6. nairng | 12/12/2015
LP version: although the sense is obviously 'we're in a good position', the pronunciation is clearly 'in a good possession'. This doesn't make sense: I imagine it is MES mocking errors in other people's spoken English, as in the over-emphasis of the following 'because'.
bzfgt
  • 7. bzfgt | 13/12/2015
N, I think he does that quite a bit--switches a word for another one, as for instance the line there's been a little debate about on the FOF lately, "creamery" rather than "greenery" from "Barmy" (he clearly says "creamery" or at least "greemery").

I'm not sure though, I agree it sounds more like "possession" but I can almost hear at as "position" with his slurry pronunciation. I'd like to know what do others think?
dannyno
  • 8. dannyno | 21/02/2016
The Reformation! site says the other voice is Simon Archer/Ding, which is more plausible than Alan Wise these days.
rik
  • 9. rik | 25/02/2016
5. bzfgt | 06/12/2015
Rik, how do you know this?

Alan Wise has been in a couple of the documentaries ....the Dutch one he says something like " he lives in a strange house in Prestwich...i dont go in...with a strange animal..etc..

this bit is on the trailer also i think.
Antoine
  • 10. Antoine | 10/06/2016
Could Mark be making a reference to the awful Lawnmower Man film? As far as I can make out on IMDB, it's the only time he's played a doctor, which struck me as unlikely but it seems to be the case. And in the awful movie, he does use weird drugs to make these lab chimps super-aggressive and super-intelligent so they can be used as weird future weapons, or something like that.

I also definitely remember reading an interview in which he mentions his doctors trying to prescribe antidepressants in an effort to get him to stop smoking. It might have been a scanned PDF on the Fall site, because my Google searches aren't turning anything up, I really wish I could find it. In any case antidepressants are sometimes used by folks trying to quit.
John Howard
  • 11. John Howard | 07/07/2017
Charlie Brown from the Peanuts comic strip said Good Grief a lot.
bzfgt
  • 12. bzfgt (link) | 15/07/2017
He sure did! Good call.
Pinkpapaver
  • 13. Pinkpapaver | 21/02/2018
I made a comment on the forum that the words of Mark e Smith are a little like A tarot spread where in what needs to be revealed to a soul is revealed to the soul. So, here goes.

Let's relate back to John quays lack of Christmas.

Buprenorphine is now prescribed to John quays as a sub lingual tablet under the brand name subutex.

But John quays should just be dedicated to the cause of his own name change, prescribed medication does not cure John quays of addiction affliction. Therefore John quays needs dedication not medication if he is to lose the label john quays. Pharmacy a recurring theme thru the great man's life work.
Dedication to the work of Mark e Smith better than any medication from big pharma.
It seems very apparent to me, an absolute beginner in this world that there is indeed some thread (s) of links within this work, some intentional some sub conscious. There is most certainly some unravelling to do and just like the tarot, it will leap out as necessary. This is a great resource....
bzfgt
  • 14. bzfgt (link) | 24/02/2018
PP, I could not dig your tarot comment more, I think that's exactly right, that MES sees lyric writing in part as a means of appealing to the unconscious via associations.
bzfgt
  • 15. bzfgt (link) | 24/02/2018
I love the connections you are making. Some of them are perfectly situated here in the comments--too personal or too much of a leap for the notes, where the confines are closer, but down here they are on the record and here for anyone to grab ahold of if they need it.
the27points
  • 16. the27points | 15/03/2018
"And Pierce Brosnan how dare you prescribe
Sad grief and bed wet pills?"

Pierce Brosnan is in the news today over his participation in an advertising campaign since 2016 for Pan Bahar a chewing tobacco product in India "Pierce Brosnan says India mouth freshener brand 'cheated' him" http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-india-43411734

Advertising of tobacco products is banned in India. Pan Bahar is a brand of Pan Masala or Gutka, "a preparation of crushed areca nut, tobacco, catechu, paraffin wax, slaked lime and sweet or savory flavorings" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gutka

Pan Bahar is marketed as a teeth-whitening breath freshener, however it has addictive and harmful effects. Brosnan's appearance in the product's advertising campaign has led many to question why he is promoting a product linked to addiction and cancer.

The side effects of Gutka include toxicity symptoms such as increased saliva production, increased tearing, sweating, diarrhea, flushing, fever and... incontinence.

So the former Bond is to some degree dealing out sad grief and bed wet pills. How dare he!
fall fan 50002
  • 17. fall fan 50002 | 06/09/2018
look at 1:24 of this from Glastonbury 2010 https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=cuSIDsWm-YQ

Mark was at Glastonbury that year, and is presumably a Kinks fan, so plausibly in the audience
Pierre
  • 18. Pierre | 06/04/2019
Cue magazine:

“I took this orange speed,” he begins, unbelievably, but the detail of the story is lost within the whirlpool of his voicebox. The gist is: the orange speed, taken some time ago, slowed his urinary function. Amazing. One of his new songs, Dedication Not Medication, deals with the reverse of this condition, accusing “Pierce Brosnan” of prescribing “bedwetting pills.” It’s about Smith’s doctor.

“I’ve always thought the most dangerous drugs are prescribed antidepressants,” he says. “They tried to prescribe me some, for my chest, to stop smoking. That was the final straw. Luckily, I’ve mates who know about pharmacology, as you can imagine…”
bzfgt
  • 19. bzfgt (link) | 21/06/2019
What issue of Cue magazine, etc.?
Antoine
  • 20. Antoine | 08/07/2019
I came across this by accident in some Youtube playlist of similar music and did a little double-take in my head!

Paradox Obscur - Cold November

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1YqZXxsN1Y

The Paradox Obscur album came out on June 25, 2014 and according to Reformation the first performance of Dedication Not Medication was on 30 August 2014, Fibbers York... I could easily imagine Eleni (seems to me this would be her kind of thing) playing this at home and Mark saying "I want one like that!" as usual.

Two pence!
bzfgt
  • 21. bzfgt (link) | 12/07/2019
Wow, yeah
bzfgt
  • 22. bzfgt (link) | 12/07/2019
For some reason I really dig that Paradox Obscur song
bzfgt
  • 23. bzfgt (link) | 12/07/2019
I was trying to see if I could get the video on the page and I just realized there's a button for embedding youtube vids...fuck, revolutionary. I wonder if it gets taken down there will it disappear here?
bzfgt
  • 24. bzfgt (link) | 12/07/2019
For that matter this one sounds a bit like it too:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmWlWcVgYBc&list=RDEMEEyZN-p80r1LZN2pwr_fwg&start_radio=1
bzfgt
  • 25. bzfgt (link) | 12/07/2019
Oh yeah, they're Greek too
bzfgt
  • 26. bzfgt (link) | 12/07/2019
Oh yeah, they're Greek too
nanahanahnah
  • 27. nanahanahnah | 26/07/2019
https://www.qthemusic.com/articles/mark-e-smiths-final-q-interview
dannyno
  • 28. dannyno | 08/12/2019
Let's quote Q properly.

https://web.archive.org/web/20190816070919/https://www.qthemusic.com/articles/mark-e-smiths-final-q-interview

One of his new songs, Dedication Not Medication, deals with the reverse of this condition, accusing “Pierce Brosnan” of prescribing “bedwetting pills.” It’s about Smith’s doctor.

“I’ve always thought the most dangerous drugs are prescribed antidepressants,” he says. “They tried to prescribe me some, for my chest, to stop smoking. That was the final straw. Luckily, I’ve mates who know about pharmacology, as you can imagine…”
dannyno
  • 29. dannyno | 08/12/2019
Doh, already in note 1!!

Dan
Smychka Mayakovsky
  • 30. Smychka Mayakovsky | 28/01/2020
I recently 'discovered' the line 'dedication not medication' in the Romeo Void song, 'Nothing for Me', from 1981. I wouldn't be surprised if Mark pinched the line from this song or used it as a sort of reference but made it his own - but then it could be a coincidence. It appears in 'Nothing for Me' as:

'Dedication is the topic of the day
Dedication is what we need
Dedication is the topic of the day
Dedication is what we need
Dedication not medication
Dedication not medication is what we need
But there's nothing for me'
Wrayx8
  • 31. Wrayx8 | 04/02/2020
So from that interview we can assume that the song is about his doctor, who looks like Pierce Brosnan, trying to prescribe him anti-depressants?

"Bedwet pills" is, therefore, a euphemism which implies people who take them are bedwetters. Charming.
Wrayx8
  • 32. Wrayx8 | 04/02/2020
When the title is taken into consideration, then, the whole song is a diatribe about the overuse of anti-depression meds in society as a whole.

The erroneous "You decide" that adorned the backdrops therefore takes on another meaning in the context of the perception that taking such meds curtails free will.
Paul G
  • 33. Paul G | 31/03/2020
I can't find anything to back this up but - from The Fall online https://thefall.org/news/2015-08-30.html and dated 11 May is this piece from cycling clothing company Milltag:

"The Fall released their new album, “Sub-Lingual Tablet” on 11 May with one of the tracks titled “Dedication Not Medication”. The song is about cyclist Dieter Wiedemann, a sporting hero of East Germany who kept under close surveillance by the Stasi before defecting to West Germany whilst qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics. Once in the west, he signed professional forms with Torpedo and fulfilled a lifetime ambition of riding the Tour de France. This limited edition jersey is styled on the Torpedo jersey and pays tribute to all those cyclists who strive for, and have achieved, excellence through sheer dedication."

I don't buy the 'about Wiedemann' but I'm sure at the time I read the title was a quote of his. I can't find anything to support this. Anyone?
bzfgt
  • 34. bzfgt (link) | 03/04/2020
Huh:

3 loop music
May 18, 2015 ·
“Sorry guys, Mr. Pharmacist is out of the running - its dedication that gets you through!”

Following the release of The Fall’s new album Sub Lingual Tablet, Milltag x 3 Loop Music announce the latest in their line of music related cycling apparel.

Inspired by the track Dedication Not Medication from the album, Milltag x 3 Loop Music have fashioned a cycling jersey and cap based on the Torpedo jersey of Dieter Wiedemann, an inspiration for the song. The East German sporting hero who was kept under close surveillance by the Stasi before defecting to West Germany whilst qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics. Once in the west, he signed professional forms with Torpedo and fulfilled a lifetime ambition of riding the Tour de France.

This limited edition jersey and cap is styled on the Torpedo jersey and pays tribute to all those cyclists who strive for, and have achieved, excellence through sheer dedication.
https://www.facebook.com/3loopmusic/posts/sorry-guys-mr-pharmacist-is-out-of-the-running-its-dedication-that-gets-you-thro/924358884282843/

https://www.facebook.com/Milltag/photos/a.192743650761994/1036425859727098/?type=1&theater

Seems like a hoax by this Milltag company to me...no record of him saying it I can find, and note they don't claim he said it, just that he was "an inspiration"

Can someone who is on Facebook ask them where they got their info, or if they just made it up?
Paul G
  • 35. Paul G | 23/04/2020
Follow up from an email exchange I had with Milltag -

They were approached by 3Loop Music and that's where the song and link to Dieter Wiedermann came from.

3Loop Music haven't commented yet though.
bzfgt
  • 36. bzfgt (link) | 24/04/2020
Someone made it up, I'm pretty sure...
Paul G
  • 37. Paul G | 29/04/2020
3Loop music have emailed me some information about the Fall/3Loop/Milltag cycling clothing collaboration.

The discussions about a Fall cycling jersey began in November 2014. Instead of the suggested Mr Pharmacist theme, Elena (on behalf of Mark) suggested using “The Fall Dieter Weidermann from our upcoming LP. Or Dedication Not Medication.” (At that time the working title of what was to become Sub-Lingual Tablet.)

So the idea came from Mr and Mrs Smith and after researching Wiedermann 3Loop came up with the jersey design.

The marketing was then worded to appeal to the cycling market which it was why it concentrated on Wiedermann’s achievements.

So the song is inspired on some level by Wiedermann (maybe title only) rather than being about him.
bzfgt
  • 38. bzfgt (link) | 02/05/2020
So the original title of the song was "Dieter Wiedermann" is what that is suggesting ?
Paul G
  • 39. Paul G | 08/05/2020
It would probably take Elena to confirm that but that is the inference.
dannyno
  • 40. dannyno | 16/05/2020
If the email suggested "Dieter Weidermann from our upcoming LP. Or Dedication Not Medication." - does that not imply that "Dieter Weidermann" was a different song? "Or Dedication Not Medication", it says.

Unless "or" means "alternative known as". But that hits the problem that when first played at York on 30 August 2014, the song was called "Bumblebee", and the second time it was played, at Brighton in September, it appeared on the set list as "Dedication". I suppose it's possible they might have just retitled this song or another one if there was some cash in it. And maybe saying it was on the album might be a negotiating tactic to up any payment (you know, "well, of course, we'd have to take it off the album... and we're already quite advanced with that..."

It just seems a massive coincidence that the company would initiate contact and for The Fall to have a song about a cyclist already recorded or ready to record!
Paul G
  • 41. Paul G | 16/05/2020
I take Dedication Not Medication to be the working title of the album at the point of contact so Dannyno)might be right that Dieter Wiedermann could have been a different song.

Or, if we can pin that quote down to Wiedermann, as a just a general inspiration for the title.
dannyno
  • 42. dannyno | 18/05/2020
Ah ha, get you. "Dedication Not Medication" was on backdrops at the time; plausible as a working title.

Much would depend on how structured the email was and how punctuated. "The Fall Dieter Wiedermann" could almost be a subject line, and then "from our upcoming LP" a kind of quick fragment of sentence.

Which is all ridiculous speculation, I realise.

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