We heard this a few months ago. "Stairway to heaven", the legendary song by Led Zepellin is back in the courts. Frankly, I thought that the issue had been settle but not so fast.
According to the BBC, the group Taurus claims that Robert Plant & Jimmy Page heard the melody when both groups were in tour circa 1969:
The trial has been scheduled for 10 May.Stairway to Heaven, released in 1971, is widely seen as one of the greatest rock compositions of all time.The copyright infringement action has been brought by Michael Skidmore, a trustee for the late Spirit guitarist Randy Wolfe, who played on the same bill as Led Zeppelin in the 1960s, and claims he should be given a writing credit on the track.Led Zeppelin guitarist Page and lead singer Plant are reputed to have written Stairway to Heaven in a remote cottage in Wales.However, Mr Skidmore has suggested the song came about after the band heard Spirit perform the instrumental Taurus while the bands toured together in 1968 and 1969.US district judge Gary Klausner said a jury could find "substantial" similarity between the first two minutes of Stairway and Taurus."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," Judge Klausner ruled."What remains is a subjective assessment of the 'concept and feel' of two works... a task no more suitable for a judge than for a jury."He also said the trustee can get only 50% of any damages awarded, citing a 1967 contract Wolfe signed.
We will see. I've heard both songs and there is indeed a similarity. At the same time, my guess is that there will be a settlement out of court and both sides will go home happy.
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