The song, which was written by John Lennon, was inspired by a 19th century poster (about 1843), which he had found in an antique store in Surrey. Many of the elements in the song are based off of the poster.
It is commonly believed that the line "And of course Henry the Horse dances the waltz" was a reference to the drug heroin (as both "henry" and "horse" are slang names for it); the original line on the poster referred to the horse as Zanthus.
The real Mr. Kite was an all-round performer who worked with Panquo Fanque and Mr J. Henderson, who was employed as a wire walker, trampolinist (somerset thrower, according to the poster) and clown.
- John Lennon - Lead Vocals, Hammond Organ, Harmonica, Tape Loops
- Paul McCartney - Bass Guitar (Rickenbacker 4001S), Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals
- George Harrison - Maracas, Bass Harmonica, Backing Vocals
- Ringo Starr - Drums, Harmonica
- George Martin - Piano, Harmonium, Wurlitzer Organ, Glockenspiel, Tape Loops
- Mal Evans - Harmonica
- Neil Aspinall - Harmonica
- Geoff Emerick - Tape Loops
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