When someone thinks Zeppelin and mandolin, the two tunes that always come to mind are The Battle of Evermore and this tune, Going to California. On Zeppelin, we’re really treated to two different approaches to mandolin–Jimmy Page on Evermore and John Paul Jones on Going to California. Where Evermore has typical Page swagger and abandon, Going to California is more mandolin-centric and wistful. I’d held off for almost 20 years doing any transcription/lesson of this tune as YouTube is rife with various levels of attempt. As simple as this tune is, a lot of hours were went into trying to capture Jones’ recorded arrangement (still most likely missing some of the subtleties). For those with Notion, I put together a really straightforward guitar track that captures the main guitar motifs of each section without all the unique Page variations throughout. Nothing like having a true back track to play along with. You have settings in Notion that will allow you to mute the mandolin track.
As this has been an often requested tune and I want to people to be inspired to play mandolin, I am making this arrangement available to everyone regardless of membership. If you like the transcription, think of subscribing to the website!