June 1997
Length: 1:56
Disc: OK Computer
Tablature: Guitar

Other Versions:
Cover by Silent Gray - Anyone Can Play Radiohead Tribute LP
Cover by Motor Industries - Plastic Mutations Tribute LP
String Version - Strung Out On OK Computer

It's basically, a kind of interlude for the album. Just shy of 2 minutes long, it features only a computerized voice speaking the lyrics, and a piano and a few distorting background sounds. A very original track which many fans consider to be just something there to split the album into halves. Other fans, however consider this a brilliant track. The lyrics describe everything the album OK Computer stands for in one song. The neutral sounding voice really does seem emotional.

Many people mistook the computerized voice on this track for that of physicist Stephen Hawking. The strange voice was, in fact, created by Thom on his Mac computer. He recorded it one night in an isolated area of the rehearsal space that the band had set up. Thom just read out a list he had compiled over time to the computer, with some piano in the background. Rumour is that the list of lyrics was compiled along with a girl on the Internet who had managed to get Thom's e-mail address, and they exchanged this list until it grew into a song.

During the 1997 tour, Fitter Happier was played as an intro to concerts, just before the band would appear on stage.

Fitter, happier, more productive
Not drinking too much
Regular exercise at the gym
(3 days a week)
Getting on better with your associate employee contemporaries
At ease
Eating well
(No more microwave dinners and saturated fats)
A patient better driver
A safer car
(Baby smiling in back seat)
Sleeping well
(No bad dreams)
No paranoia
Careful to all animals
(Never washing spiders down the plughole)
Keep in contact with old friends
(Enjoy a drink now and then)
Will frequently check credit at (moral) bank (hole in the wall)
Favours for favours
Fond but not in love
Charity standing orders
On Sundays ring road supermarket
(No killing moths or putting boiling water on the ants)
Car wash
(Also on Sundays)
No longer afraid of the dark or midday shadows
Nothing so ridiculously teenage and desperate
Nothing so childish - at a better pace
Slower and more calculated
No chance of escape
Now self-employed
Concerned (but powerless)
An empowered and informed member of society
(Pragmatism not idealism)
Will not cry in public
Less chance of illness
Tires that grip in the wet
(Shot of baby strapped in back seat)
A good memory
Still cries at a good film
Still kisses with saliva
No longer empty and frantic like a cat tied to a stick
That's driven into frozen winter shit
(The ability to laugh at weakness)
Healthier and more productive
A pig in a cage on antibiotics
Thom Yorke "The others were downstairs, 'rockin', and I crept upstairs and did this in ten minutes. I was feeling incredible hysteria and panic, and it was so liberating to give the lyrics to this neutral-sounding computer. I had about three months where I couldn't write anything, but I constantly had lists. Then I realised that it was the only way I was going to say what I needed to say. Sometimes, before you have a genuine feeling it is circumvented by the outside, your brain is apologising for things that haven't even happened yet. But me, I listen to the piano bit." - Thom

"The reason 'Fitter Happier' exists is 'cos of mental background noise. Some days you're in a disturbed state and it moves to the front." - Thom

"That voicebox is the most emotional voice I've heard in ages... I'm not standing behind the lyrics any more. Sometimes your ideas get entangled with other ideas and then you have to apologize for the original idea because it doesn't make sense any more. That's what happened with 'Fitter Happier'. Now, I listen to the piano part." - Thom

"The most escapist moment of OK Computer is in Fitter Happier. We put the lyrics in the computer with talk-program. Just standard software. The text is now spoken by an emotionless computervoice. I see it as the ultimate dissociation with the lyrics and your responsibilty for it. See it as something between a statement and an experiment." - Thom Colin Greenwood

"It sounds like Stephen Hawking is guesting on the album. Maybe he should have been. I used to see him when I was at college, toddling around in his wheelchair." - Colin

"We used a computervoice with the voicebox. It's weird how much emotion there is in that voice." - Colin
Ed O'Brien
"Thom basically had this checklist, like a nineties checklist if you like, and he had written it out. There is a bit of him playing piano, [which was] in the rehearsal room. He was very drunk one night, which you can tell by the sloppy playing on it, and he just played out this melody and stuff. He was very anxious that it wasn't him saying [the lyrics] - this voice is neutral. By the computer saying it, it doesn't becomed a bit of pretentious art-wank, it's something neutral in the way that the computer stumbles over words and doesn't get the pronunciation or the inflections right." - Ed

"I love the lyrics. "fitter happier / more productive / comfortable / not drinking too much / regular exercise at the gym (3 days a week)": We used that advice in a lot of magazines to promote the album. I think that some people really believe that message and think that we are some kind of health-freaks." - Ed Jonny Greenwood

"This was the original text which we already put on our Internet-site a year ago. We put all kinds of things on it. Things we like, things which we don't know what to do with it them. One day, Thom was playing with his new computer and he found out he could let the machine talk. When he programmed the text from Fitter, Happier, it sounded very beautiful on a sort of alarming tone. It was something weird. It wasn't melodramatic, but it wasn't cold either. The music is a combination of a piano through a memo-recorder and a 24 headed string-orchestra, who played something I wrote two days before." - Jonny
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