Del Rey posted a snippet of the song on Instagram on April 3, 2019.
Titles fans gave the snippet were "You Don't Ever Have To" and "Be Stronger". On July 30th, fans discovered the official title was "California" after using Shazam to identify the snippet from Instagram.
You don't ever have to be stronger than you really are
When you're lying in my arms
You don't ever have to
Go faster than your fastest pace
Or faster than my fastest cars
...But I never said a thing
I shouldn't have done it but I read it in your letter
You said to a friend that you wish you were doing better
I wanted to call you but I didn't say a thing
(Two, three, four)