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Why Are People Grudgeful?

Written by:
  • Joe Gibbs, Lee Perry
Initial release:
  • Why Are People Grudgeful?, Cog Sinister/Permanent 7SPERM9 7”; 12SPERM9 12”; CDSPERM9 CD [US version: Matador Records OLE-054 2 CD; (OLE-053 7 7"; 20 April 1993]
  • 5 April 1993
Subsequent reissues:
  • The Infotainment Scan, Cog Sinister/Permanent PERMLP12 LP; PERMMC12 Cassette; PERMCD12 CD; 26 April 1993 (different edit to single version)
  • Independent Top 20, Beechwood Music TT017CD, 1993 (compilation CD)
  • The Infotainment Scan, Artful Records ARTFULCD 22; 5 July 1999 (reissue of original album)
  • A World Bewitched - Artful ARTFULCD35, 6 February 2001 (single version)
  • High Tension Line, Recall/Snapper Music SMDCD443; 22 September 2002 (single version)
  • 50,000 Fall Fans Can't Be Wrong - 39 Golden Greats, Sanctuary SMEDD017; 31 May 2004 (single version)
  • The Infotainment Scan, Castle/Sanctuary CMQDD1227 CD; 23 January 2006 (contains original album and sinlge versions of track)
  • Permanent Years (Paranoia Man In Cheap Sh*t Room), Fulfil Records ARTFULCD53; 22 May 2006 (single version)
  • The Fall: A Sides 1978 - 2016. Cherry Red CRCDBox 42; 24 November 2017 (single version)
  • The Fall: Singles 1978 - 2016, Cherry Red CRCDBox 30; 24 November 2017 (single version)
  • The Fall - 58 Golden Greats, Cherry Red CRCDBox74; 7 December 2018
Official live releases: 
  • Live Various Years - Cog Sinister/Voiceprint COGVP111CD, September 1998 (allegedly recorded in Munich 1993, though no record of such a  gig exists; track called "Grudgefull" on the sleeve)
  • Live Various Years (Reissued by Cog Sinister/Voiceprint with Live in Cambridge 1988) VP241004 CD: 22 September 2003
Group on initial recording:
  • Mark E Smith - vocals; Craig Scanlon - guitar; Steve Hanley - bass; Dave Bush - keyboards; Simon Wolstencroft - drums, keyboards; Karl Burns - drums 

First played at:
  • 7 April 1993 Hallam University, Sheffield
Last played at:
  • 20 January 1994 Lomax, Liverpool
Number of known performances:
  • 33
This is a cover version, or to be more accurate, a cover version of two different but related songs. The story behind the original versions is as follows:
"Born in the rural Jamaican village of St. Mary's in 1936, Perry began his surrealistic musical odyssey in the late '50s, working with ska man Prince Buster selling records for Clement "Coxsone" Dodd's Downbeat Sound System. Called "Little" Perry because of his diminutive stature (Perry stands 4'11"), he was soon producing and recording for Dodd at the center of the Jamaican music industry, Studio One. After a falling out with Dodd (throughout his career, Perry has a tendency to burn his bridges after he stopped working with someone), Perry went to work at Wirl Records with Joe Gibbs. Perry and Gibbs never really saw eye to eye on anything, and in 1968, Perry left to form his own label, called Upsetter. Not surprisingly, Perry's first release on Upsetter was a single entitled "People Funny Boy," which was a direct attack upon Gibbs. What is important about the record is that, along with selling extremely well in Jamaica, it was the first Jamaican pop record to use the loping, lazy, bass-driven beat that would soon become identified as the reggae "riddim" and signal the shift from the hyperkinetically upbeat ska to the pulsing, throbbing languor of "roots" reggae."   http://www.starpulse.com/Music/Perry,_Lee/Biography/
Joe Gibbs released a reply in a song using the same rhythm  called "People Grudgeful". MES amalgamated the two songs to help create The Fall's cover version.
This was The Fall's first release on the Permanent record label. Paul Mathur, in a review in Melody Maker on 3 April 1993, considered the single to be "the most engaging things [Smith's] done for a couple of years". But, as Simon Ford points out in "The Fall", "even a live appearance on The Beat and a low.budget promotional video screened on MTV couldn't help propel Why Are You Grudgeful? higher than no. 43 in the charts."
The track reached no. 11 in John Peel's Festive Fifty in 1993.
Lyrics to "People Funny Boy":
"why, why people funny bwoy
now that you reach the top
an' you turn big shot
all I have done for you
you not remember that 
when you were down an' out
I used to help you out
but now that you win jackpot
you don't remember that
now that you turn big shot
bwoy you 'ave big chat

you're lucky, you're lucky, you're lucky to have rice and peas a yard
but me, poor me don't have none at all 

I want-a, I want-a, I want-a, I want-a, 
I want-a uh i-yah yard tonight."
Lee Perry: People Funny Boy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VHrX685RkiU
Joe Gibbs: People Grudgeful: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtaP2Yfq7dI
Gigs played at:
7 April 1993 Hallam University, Sheffield
6 May 1993 Student's Union, University, Newcastle
7 May 1993 University, Manchester
8 May 1993 Methodist Central Hall, Liverpool
9 May 1993 University of East Anglia, Norwich
10 May 1993 Junction, Cambridge
12 May 1993 Roadmender, Northampton
13 May 1993 University, Leeds
15 May 1993 Clapham Grand, London
16 May 1993 Clapham Grand, London
17 May 1993 Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton
18 May 1993 Pyramid Centre, Portsmouth
19 August 1993 Trocadero, Philadelphia
24 August 1993 Opera House, Toronto
28 August 1993 Cabaret Metro, Chicago
29 August 1993 Barrymore Theatre, Madison
2 September 1993 Backstage, Seattl
4 September 1993 Slim's, San Francisco
5 September 1993 Slim's, San Francisco
7 September 1993 Roxy, Hollywood
10 September 1993 Trees, Dallas

11 September 1993

14 September 1993

Liberty Lunch, Austin 

  40 Watt Club, Athens, Georgia

17 September 1993 Academy, New York
4 October 1993 Vier Linden, Hildsheim
11 October 1993 Batschkapp, Frankfurt, Germany 
17 October 1993 Paradiso, Amsterdam
19 October 1993 Kentish Town Forum, London
6 December 1993 Roadhouse, Manchester
9 December 1993 Roadhouse, Manchester
27 December 1993 Al's Music Cafe, Manchester
28 December 1993 Almada, Portugal
20 January 1994 Lomax, Liverpool

Performed on "The Beat" 1993

Promo Video