Help me Rhonda
“Help Me, Rhonda” is a song by American rock band the Beach Boys, appearing first on their 1965 album The Beach Boys Today! (where it was spelled “Help Me, Ronda“) and subsequently in re-recorded form on the following 1965 album Summer Days (And Summer Nights!!). It was written by Brian Wilson, with additional lyrics by Mike Love. Unlike many other songs by the band from this period, “Help Me, Rhonda” features a lead vocal sung by Al Jardine.
According to Wilson, “Help Me, Rhonda” was not based on a real person. After being released as an album track on Today!, Wilson revisited the song, feeling it had commercial potential. This new version, featuring a different arrangement and slightly different lyrics, was released as a single in April 1965 and appeared on Summer Days later that same year. It topped the Billboard Hot 100, making it their second number-one single following “I Get Around” (1964). It remains one of the band’s most acclaimed singles commercially and critically.
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Guy falls for a girl so hard that marriage is in his plans. She finds another guy ending those plans. Our jilted narrator sees Rhonda who “looks so fine” and figures she will be the one to |help me get her out of my heart.” The “help me Rhonda” line is repeated almost 50 times, so there is an urgency there. Did Rhonda help him or did she figure catching this guy on the rebound may be a disaster best avoided?
Great song, a song so catchy we may need help getting it out of our head.