transcription from jonimitchell.com


California

Dulcimer tablature transcribed by Howard Wright
Tuning: E B G#   "Joni" Tuning: E 7 -3

In this file, I've written out the actual dulcimer part played by Joni. 
Guitar players will be glad to know that it's very easy to play this 
dulcimer part on the guitar as well, using just the top three guitar 
strings. 


Dulcimer Tuning
---------------

(Guitarists who just want to copy the dulcimer part on the guitar can
skip this section)

Dulcimer tuning: E B G#

This means tune the lowest string (bass) to E, the middle string to
B and the double string to G#. Note that the middle string is the 
string tuned to the highest note.

Joni actually uses an unconventional stringing method for her dulcimer,
and puts the lowest pitch string (bass string) in the middle of the other
strings. This doesn't really affect the sound of the chords, so I've
followed the usual conventions (bass string at the top of the dulcimer
tablature) as this will be easier to follow for most dulcimer players.

In "Joni tuning notation", the tuning for this song would be written
as: E 7 -3

OK, you're thinking what is a "-3" in Joni notation?!

The "Joni notation" system of writing down tunings looks slightly
odd for this song, because the pitch of the last string is *lower* 
than the middle string. 

The Joni notation system assumes that each string is tuned higher than 
the last one, which always gives positive numbers. Because in this song, 
the middle dulcimer string is actually the highest pitch, the next string 
is 3 semitones *lower*, hence the -3. 


Copying the dulcimer part on a guitar
-------------------------------------

If you want to play the exact Joni dulcimer part on the guitar, you
use just the top three strings (because the dulcimer has only three strings).
These three strings are tuned to the same notes: E B and G#. 

On the dulcimer, the note used for each string is important because one 
of the dulcimer "strings" is actually a pair of strings, and has quite
a different sound (like a drone). For this song, the double string on the
dulcimer must be tuned to G#.

On the guitar things are simpler because all the strings are singles, so 
the order of the notes is not so important. The easiest way to do the 
tuning is:

* tune the 3rd string (usually the G) down to the E, 
* tune the 2nd string (usually the B) down to G#,
* tune the 1st string (usually E) down to B.

Check you have the correct tuning by playing a note on the 4th fret
of the 3rd string (tuned to E). This note is G#, the pitch of the open
2nd string. Playing a note at the 7th fret of the 3rd string gives you
B, the pitch of the top string.

Tuning this way on the guitar means the strings are in increasing order
of pitch, as is uaually the case.


Phew! Now, on to the tablature!


----------------------------------------
Dulc frets: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6  7  8  9  10
Gtr frets:  0 2 4 5 7 9 10 12 14 16 17
----------------------------------------


Dulcimer and Guitar tablature
-----------------------------

Make sure you read the correct tablature for the your instrument!
Becasue of the different ways the instruments are fretted, the fret
numbers needed on the two instruments are not the same. 

The dulcimer tablature is at the top, and the guitar tablature is 
written underneath the corresponding section of dulcimer tablature. 
The words are written underneath the two lines of tablature.

I've written out the details of the strumming for the first verse and
chorus - use the same strumming pattern for the rest of the song. Note 
that there are rhythmic "slaps" of the strings mixed with the strums. 
For these, just tap the strings lightly with the strumming hand to get 
a dry, muted sound. These rhythmic slaps are written in the tablature
with x characters, e.g:

---x--
---x--
---x--

The basic strumming pattern used throughout is shown below, with the 
quarter notes indicated as 1 2 3 4, and the "&" characters indicating
the eighth notes between each quarter note.


1     &     2     &     3     &     4     &
Strum      slap strum strum       slap    *


* sometimes an extra strum is played on the final eighth note.

As always, listen to the original recording and it should all become
clear.

NB this song was transcribed in the "Hits" songbook, but there were
quite a few mistakes with the chords and the strumming patterns.


h - hammer on
p - pull off
/ - slide


INTRO :
--------


Dulc:

E-----------0----3---x--3-3---x--3-----0---4---4-0-0---x--
B---2h3p2-0---0--3---x--3-3---x--3---3---0---4---0-0---x--
G#----------0----3---x--3-3---x--3-----0---4---4-0-0---x--

Gtr:

B---4h5p4-0---0--5---x--5-5---x--5---5---0---7---0-0---x--
G#----------0----5---x--5-5---x--5-----0---7---7-0-0---x--
E-----------0----5---x--5-5---x--5-----0---7---7-0-0---x--



Dulc:

G#--0-0---x--0-0---x--0-0---x-----
B---0-0---x--0-0---x--0-0---x-----
E---0-0---x--0-0---x--0-0---x-----

Gtr:

B---0-0---x--0-0---x--0-0---x-----
G#--0-0---x--0-0---x--0-0---x-----
E---0-0---x--0-0---x--0-0---x-----



VERSE 1:
--------


Dulc:

E--7----------x---7---7-----x--------------
B--7----------x---7---7-----x--------------
G#-7----------x---7---7-----x--------------

Gtr:

B--12---------x---12--12----x------------------
G#-12---------x---12--12----x------------------
E--12---------x---12--12----x------------------

Sitting in a park in Paris France



Dulc:

E---3----x---3--3-------------x----------1----
B---3----x---3--3-------------x----------1----
G#--3----x---3--3-------------x----------1----

Gtr:

B---5----x---5--5-------------x----------2-----
G#--5----x---5--5-------------x----------2-----
E---5----x---5--5-------------x----------2-----

     Reading the news and it sure looks bad



Dulc:

E---x-----1---1---------------x-----------------
B---x-----1---1---------------x-----------------
G#--x-----1---1---------------x-----------------

Gtr:

B---x-----2---2---------------x------------
G#--x-----2---2---------------x------------
E---x-----2---2---------------x------------

    They won't give peace a chance



Dulc:

E---4--------x--4--4--------x-----------7---x--
B---4--------x--4--4--------x-----------7---x--
G#--4--------x--4--4--------x-----------7---x--

Gtr:

B---7--------x--7--7--------x----------12---x--
G#--7--------x--7--7--------x----------12---x--
E---7--------x--7--7--------x----------12---x--

     That was just a dream some of us had



Dulc:

E--7---7---------x----3-------x---3-3-------x----
B--7---7---------x----3-------x---3-3-------x----
G#-7---7---------x----3-------x---3-3-------x----

Gtr:

B--12--12--------x----5-------x---5-5-------x----
G#-12--12--------x----5-------x---5-5-------x----
E--12--12--------x----5-------x---5-5-------x----


     Still a lot of lands to see,   but I wouldn't want to
 


Dulc:

E----1------x------1--1-----x----4-----x--4--4---------x----
B----1------x------1--1-----x----4-----x--4--4---------x----
G#---1------x------1--1-----x----4-----x--4--4---------x----

Gtr:

B----2------x------2--2-----x----7-----x--7--7---------x---
G#---2------x------2--2-----x----7-----x--7--7---------x---
E----2------x------2--2-----x----7-----x--7--7---------x---

   stay here, it's too old and cold and settled in its ways here






CHORUS:
-------

Dulc:

E---3--x--3-3--x--3-3--x--3-3--------------------
B---3--x--3-3--x--3-3--x--3-3--------------------
G#--3--x--3-3--x--3-3--x--3-3--------------------

Gtr:

B---5--x--5-5--x--5-5--x--5-5---------------------
G#--5--x--5-5--x--5-5--x--5-5---------------------
E---5--x--5-5--x--5-5--x--5-5---------------------

            Ah but California



Dulc:

E--x-0-0--x--0-0--x--5----x---5-5----x------------
B--x-0-0--x--0-0--x--5----x---5-5----x------------
G#-x-0-0--x--0-0--x--5----x---5-5----x------------

Gtr:

B--x-0-0--x--0-0--x--9----x---9-9----x-------------
G#-x-0-0--x--0-0--x--9----x---9-9----x-------------
E--x-0-0--x--0-0--x--9----x---9-9----x-------------

   Ca-li-fornia     I'm coming  home



Dulc:

E---3-------x-----3--3---------x------------
B---3-------x-----3--3---------x------------
G#--3-------x-----3--3---------x------------

Gtr:

B---5-------x-----5--5---------x--------------------
G#--5-------x-----5--5---------x--------------------
E---5-------x-----5--5---------x--------------------

     I'm gonna see the folks I dig



Dulc:

E--2------x--2--2-----x--0---4---------------
B--0------x--0--0-----x--0---4---------------
G#-0------x--0--0-----x--0---4---------------

Gtr:

B--0------x--0--0------x--0--7----------------
G#-0------x--0--0------x--0--7----------------
E--4------x--4--4------x--0--7----------------

     I'll even kiss a sunset pig



Dulc:

E---x--4---4---x----0--0-----------------0----
B---x--4---4---x----0--0---------2h3p2-0---0--
G#--x--4---4---x----0--0-----------------0----

Gtr:

B---x--7---7---x----0--0---------4h5p4-0---0--
G#--x--7---7---x----0--0-----------------0----
E---x--7---7---x----0--0-----------------0----

      California I'm coming home



Dulc:

E---3---3--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
B---3---3--2---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
G#--3---3--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--

Gtr:

B---5---5--4---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
G#--5---5--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
E---5---5--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--




VERSE 2:
---------

(Same chords as verse 1)

I met a redneck on a Grecian isle
Who did the goat dance very well   
He gave me back my smile
But he kept my camera to sell
Oh the rogue, the red red rogue
He cooked good omelettes and stews
And I might have stayed on with him there
But my heart cried out for you



CHORUS:
--------

California
Oh California I'm coming home
Oh make me feel good rock and roll band
I'm your biggest fan
California I'm coming home


Dulc:

E----------0----3---3--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
B--2h3p2-0---0--3---3--2---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
G#---------0----3---3--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--

Gtr:

B--4h5p4-0---0--5---5--4---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
G#---------0----5---5--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
E----------0----5---5--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--

                                                   Oh  it gets so


MIDDLE 8:
---------

(Chords just indicated once - use same strumming pattern as before)


Dulc:

E------8-----------3---------------------
B------8-----------3---------------------
G#-----8-----------3---------------------

Gtr:

B------14----------5-----------------------
G#-----14----------5-----------------------
E------14----------5-----------------------

          lo   -   nely, when you're walking 



Dulc:

E----7------------------------------4----
B----7------------------------------4----
G#---7------------------------------4----

Gtr:

B----12-----------------------------7------
G#---12-----------------------------7------
E----12-----------------------------7------
         
        And the streets are full of strangers


   
Dulc:

E---4-------------8---------3---------------
B---4-------------8---------3---------------
G#--4-------------8---------3---------------

Gtr:

B---7-------------14--------5----------------
G#--7-------------14--------5-----------------
E---7-------------14--------5-----------------

  All the news of home you read 



Dulc:

E-----------1-----------6-------------4---
B-----------1-----------6-------------4---
G#----------1-----------6-------------4---

Gtr:

B-----------2-----------10------------7-----
G#----------2-----------10------------7-----
E-----------2-----------10------------7-----

just give you the blues, just give you the blues



Dulc:

E--3---x--3---3-3---3--0---4---4-0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x-
B--3---x--3---3-3---3----0---4---0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x-
G#-3---x--3---3-3---3--0---4---4-0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x-


Gtr:

B--5---x--5---5-5---5----0---7---0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x-
G#-5---x--5---5-5---5--0---7---7-0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x-
E--5---x--5---5-5---5--0---7---7-0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x--0-0--x-



VERSE 3:
---------

(Same chords as verse 1)

So I bought me a ticket I caught a plane to Spain
Went to a party down a red dirt road
There were lots of pretty people there
Reading Rolling Stone reading Vogue
They said how long can you hang around
I said a week maybe two
Just until my skin turns brown
And then I'm going home



CHORUS:
--------

To California
California
I'm coming home
Oh, will you take me as I am
Strung out on another man
California I'm coming home


Dulc:

E----------0----3---3--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
B--2h3p2-0---0--3---3--2---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
G#---------0----3---3--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--

Gtr:

B--4h5p4-0---0--5---5--4---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
G#---------0----5---5--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--
E----------0----5---5--0---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x---0-0---x--

                                                   Oh it gets so

Outtro:
-------

(Use same strumming pattern as before)

Dulc:

E------8-------3---------------------
B------8-------3---------------------
G#-----8-------3---------------------

Gtr:

B------14------5-----------------------
G#-----14------5-----------------------
E------14------5-----------------------

        lonely, when you're walking 



Dulc:

E----7------------------------------4----
B----7------------------------------4----
G#---7------------------------------4----

Gtr:

B----12-----------------------------7------
G#---12-----------------------------7------
E----12-----------------------------7------
         
        And the streets are full of strangers


   
Dulc:

E---4-----------8---------3---------------
B---4-----------8---------3---------------
G#--4-----------8---------3---------------

Gtr:

B---7-----------14--------5----------------
G#--7-----------14--------5-----------------
E---7-----------14--------5-----------------

All the news of home you read 



Dulc:

E---------------7------------------4-----
B---------------7------------------4-----
G#--------------7------------------4-----

Gtr:

B---------------12-----------------7-------
G#--------------12-----------------7-------
E---------------12-----------------7-------

More about the war and the bloody changes



Dulc:

E---8-------------------3----------------
B---8-------------------3----------------
G#--8-------------------3----------------

Gtr:

B---14------------------5------------------
G#--14------------------5------------------
E---14------------------5------------------

 Oh, will you take me as I am



Dulc:

E---3-----------------7----------4--------
B---3-----------------7----------4--------
G#--3-----------------7----------4--------

Gtr:

B---5-----------------12---------7----------
G#--5-----------------12---------7----------
E---5-----------------12---------7----------

Will you take me as I am, will ya



Dulc:

E---4------------------------8-----------
B---4------------------------8-----------
G#--4------------------------8-----------

Gtr:

B---7------------------------14------------
G#--7------------------------14------------
E---7------------------------14------------

      Will you take me as I am



Dulc:

E---3-----------------7------------4------
B---3-----------------7------------4------
G#--3-----------------7------------4------

Gtr:

B---5-----------------12-----------7--------
G#--5-----------------12-----------7--------
E---5-----------------12-----------7--------

      Mmm-mmm-mmm-mmm, mmm mmm mmm mmm



Dulc:

E---4------------8------3-----------------
B---4------------8------3-----------------
G#--4------------8------3-----------------

Gtr:

B---7------------14-----5-------------------
G#--7------------14-----5-------------------
E---7------------14-----5-------------------

     Take me as I am ......



Dulc:

E----7-----4--------8---------3-------7----------4----
B----7-----4--------8---------3-------7----------4----
G#---7-----4--------8---------3-------7----------4----

Gtr:

B---12-----7--------14--------5-------12---------7----
G#--12-----7--------14--------5-------12---------7----
E---12-----7--------14--------5-------12---------7----

 

http://JoniMitchell.com/music/transcription.cfm?id=316
This transcription is the author's own work and represents their interpretation of the song.
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