One of the most interesting backgrounds of all Beatles songs is Being For The Benefit Of Mr Kite!. As with Good Morning, Good Morning, John had become so lazy that his songs were about things immediately availible to him in his home, as he hardly ever ventured from there. The lyric was taken almost entirely from an 1843 circus poster John bought after shooting a promotional film for Strawberry Fields Forever.
John standing with the original Mr. Kite poster
Reproduction of the Mr. Kite poster
The original poster from which John derived the lyrics reads:
PABLO FANQUE'S CIRCUS ROYAL
Mssrs. KITE and HENDERSON, in announcing the following Entertainments ensure the Public that this Night's Production will be one of the most splendid ever produced in this Town, having been some days in preparation.
Mr. Kite will, for this night only, introduce the
Mr. HENDERSON will undertake the arduous Task of
Mr. KITE will appear, for the first time this season,
Mr. HENDERSON will, for the first time in Rochdale,
For particulars see Bills of the day.
George Martin plays harmonium and organ. The February 20 overdubs featured sampled sounds of Sousa marches on calliope tapes, cut up and reassembled at random by Geoff Emerick under direction of George Martin, in order to fulfill John's request that the song have a circus-like sound.
- February 17, 1967 (7 takes; rhythm track, vocal overdubs, 2 takes; reductions)
- February 20, 1967 (overdubs)
- February 28, 1967
- March 29, 1967 (organ, harmonica, and Feb. 20 tape overdub)
- March 31, 1967 (organ & glockenspiel overdubs, mono mixing)
- April 7, 1967 (stereo mixing)