Bryan Charendoff

Jimmy Page and Robert Plant wrote this song, drawing inspiration from Joni Mitchell, specifically her song “California.” Mitchell lived in the musically fertile but earthquake-prone Laurel Canyon area of Los Angeles; “California” finds her recalling her adventures on a trip to Europe but looking forward to a return home. In “Going To California,” Plant plays the part of a guy who’s looking to leave his no-good woman behind and make a fresh start in California. Page and Plant were both enthralled by Joni Mitchell’s songwriting; in “Going To California,” the guy in the song is looking for a girl just like her, one with “love in her eyes and flowers in her hair” who “plays guitar and cries and sings.”
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