- John Lennon – double-tracked lead vocal, 12-string acoustic rhythm guitar
- Paul McCartney – bass guitar, backing vocals
- George Harrison – lead guitar, backing vocals
- Ringo Starr – drums, tambourine
"Help!" is a song by The Beatles that served as the title song for both the 1965 film and its soundtrack album. It was also released as a single, and was number one for three weeks in both the US and UK. "Help!" was written primarily by John Lennon, but credited (as were all Beatles songs written by either person) to Lennon/McCartney. Paul McCartney reports that he had a hand in writing the song as well, being called in "to complete it" in a two-hour joint writing session on 4 April 1965 at Lennon's house in Weybridge. He later said that the title was "out of desperation". In 2004, "Help!" was ranked number 29 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest songs of all time.
The Beatles recorded "Help!" in 12 takes on 13 April 1965, in Abbey Road's Studio Two. They used four-track equipment, and this was the first instance when it was felt that the four tracks are not sufficient, and therefore they resorted to "bouncing", which was conducted twice, resulting in altogether eight tracks.
The first eight takes were without vocals, of which the first three saw George playing the descending guitar fill along with the band. These takes kept on breaking down with George admitting it was 'too fast' to play. Taking advice from George Martin it was decided to overdub the riff later, leaving just the sound of John tapping his acoustic guitar to keep time instead. By Take 12 the song was complete with overdubbed group vocals, tambourine and George's guitar fills.