Led Zeppelin To Face Trail Over 'Stairway to Heaven' Copyright Lawsuit

Posted at April 13th, 2016 | by Supreet.cheema | in

Led Zepplin‘s Robert Plant and guitarist Jimmy Page will soon face a trail over the origin of timeless classic track ‘Stairway to Heaven.’ The jury trail is needed to determine if the band copied its opening notes from a song performed by a much less famous band Spirit, a federal judge has ruled.

According to the judge, the lawyers for the trustee of late Spirit guitarist Randy Wolfe had shown enough evidence to support a case that “Stairway to Heaven” copies music from the Spirit song ‘Taurus.’ ‘Taurus’ was written by Wolfe in either 1966 or 1967, years before Led Zeppelin released “Stairway to Heaven” in 1971.

U.S. District Judge Gary Klausner of the Central District of California wrote a 20-page opinion to explain why he thought a trial was necessary.

While it is true that a descending chromatic four-chord progression is a common convention that abounds in the music industry, the similarities here transcend this core structure. For example, the descending bass line in both Taurus and Stairway to Heaven appears at the beginning of both songs, arguably the most recognizable and important segments. … Additionally, the descending bass line is played at the same pitch, repeated twice, and separated by a short bridge in both songs. Enough similar protectable expression is here that the issue of substantial similarity should [proceed to the jury].”

Check out ‘Stairway to Heaven’ and ‘Taurus’ below:




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