This upbeat song was written by John Phillips and issued as the first single for his group The Mamas & the Papas, appearing on their 1965 debut album If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears
. Their version went nowhere, but the group's next single, "California Dreamin'
" was a huge hit.
"Go Where You Wanna Go" found new life when it was recorded by another group with both male and female vocalists, The 5th Dimension. The group was signed to Johnny Rivers' Soul City Records, where they released an earlier single called "I'll Be Loving You Forever" as the Versatiles. Rivers suggested the group cover the song, which was a good call: The song rose up the Hot 100 to #16 and set the stage for their breakthrough in 1967.
After the single proved a success, the group put a whole album together which included another traveling tune: "Up-Up and Away
," which was written by a young songwriter named Jimmy Webb
. The group ended up recording several Webb compositions, as his career took off along with the group's.