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 Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’ 
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Post Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
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Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
Melissa Locker @woolyknickers May 19, 2014

Fans have noted the similarity to Spirit's "Taurus" for decades
You may have never heard of the band Spirit, but Led Zeppelin has.

Not only did they play shows with Zeppelin in 1969, but Spirit has also now sued them for allegedly lifting what may be one of the most famous riffs in rock history — the opening notes of “Stairway to Heaven.”

“It’s been a long time coming,” attorney Francis Alexander Malofiy said in Bloomberg Businessweek. Malofiy is representing a trust for writer Randy California, the deceased Spirit guitarist who wrote “Taurus,” the instrumental track that appeared on the band’s eponymous 1968 debut album and from which the chord progression is allegedly lifted.

Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page allegedly wrote “Stairway to Heaven” in 1970, two years after “Taurus” was released and a year after the band shared stages at gigs across the U.S. in 1969. According to the band’s bass player, Spirit always included “Taurus” in their sets. “It was such a pretty moment,” said Mark Andes to Businessweek. “It would typically come after a big forceful number and always got a good response.”

In 1997, California went public with his claims about the origins of “Stairway to Heaven.” “I’d say it was a ripoff,” California said in Listener magazine. “And the guys made millions of bucks on it and never said ‘Thank you,’ never said, ‘Can we pay you some money for it?’ It’s kind of a sore point with me.” However, California and Spirit never sued, even though fans had noted the similarity between the songs for years. “Nobody had any money, and they thought the statute of limitations was done,” Mick Skidmore, who manages California’s trust, explained to Businessweek.

Now, as Led Zeppelin prepares to release remastered deluxe versions of their original albums, including “Stairway to Heaven,” California’s trust is finally springing to action with a copyright-infringement suit and an injunction that would block Led Zeppelin IV’s reissue.

“The idea behind this is to make sure that Randy California is given a writing credit on ‘Stairway to Heaven,’” Malofiy said. They are most likely seeking monetary reparations as well. Businessweek quotes an estimate that by 2008, “Stairway to Heaven” had earned at least $562 million.

Led Zeppelin and Warner Music had no comment on the story.

Take a listen and judge for yourself:



It sounds familiar, right?

[Businessweek]


http://time.com/105016/led-zeppelin-is- ... to-heaven/

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May 21st, 2014, 10:07 am
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
45 years later???? REALLY?????


This smells worse than the Flint River on a hot summer day!

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May 21st, 2014, 10:29 am
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
Led Zeppelin stole virtually all of their songs. They're total hacks.



May 21st, 2014, 11:48 am
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
Blueskies wrote:
Led Zeppelin stole virtually all of their songs. They're total hacks.




Im not debating that at all, but how do you wait 45 years THEN say "I should sue"


Garbage I say!!!

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May 21st, 2014, 12:28 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
Guy's family wants money.

They'll get a million bucks to go away.


May 21st, 2014, 1:34 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
I'm sure there could be lots of reasons to bring it up now, but per the article
Quote:
In 1997, California went public with his claims about the origins of “Stairway to Heaven.” “I’d say it was a ripoff,” California said in Listener magazine. “And the guys made millions of bucks on it and never said ‘Thank you,’ never said, ‘Can we pay you some money for it?’ It’s kind of a sore point with me.” However, California and Spirit never sued, even though fans had noted the similarity between the songs for years. “Nobody had any money, and they thought the statute of limitations was done,” Mick Skidmore, who manages California’s trust, explained to Businessweek.
In the end, if the riff really is Spirit's, shouldn't they receive the credit?

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May 21st, 2014, 2:37 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
TheRealWags wrote:
I'm sure there could be lots of reasons to bring it up now, but per the article
Quote:
In 1997, California went public with his claims about the origins of “Stairway to Heaven.” “I’d say it was a ripoff,” California said in Listener magazine. “And the guys made millions of bucks on it and never said ‘Thank you,’ never said, ‘Can we pay you some money for it?’ It’s kind of a sore point with me.” However, California and Spirit never sued, even though fans had noted the similarity between the songs for years. “Nobody had any money, and they thought the statute of limitations was done,” Mick Skidmore, who manages California’s trust, explained to Businessweek.
In the end, if the riff really is Spirit's, shouldn't they receive the credit?


If they didnt care 40 years ago, then I say no!

Im curious as to how this isnt in a statute of limitations...

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May 21st, 2014, 3:13 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
regularjoe12 wrote:
TheRealWags wrote:
I'm sure there could be lots of reasons to bring it up now, but per the article
Quote:
In 1997, California went public with his claims about the origins of “Stairway to Heaven.” “I’d say it was a ripoff,” California said in Listener magazine. “And the guys made millions of bucks on it and never said ‘Thank you,’ never said, ‘Can we pay you some money for it?’ It’s kind of a sore point with me.” However, California and Spirit never sued, even though fans had noted the similarity between the songs for years. “Nobody had any money, and they thought the statute of limitations was done,” Mick Skidmore, who manages California’s trust, explained to Businessweek.
In the end, if the riff really is Spirit's, shouldn't they receive the credit?


If they didnt care 40 years ago, then I say no!

Im curious as to how this isnt in a statute of limitations...
So you're saying its ok to steal as long as you don't get caught or that someone doesn't care? So much for integrity and morality, eh? ](*,)

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May 21st, 2014, 3:23 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
Almost every song some sort of rip off from another earlier song/songs. I believe there is a website or app that can dissect the songs and tell you what songs the components come from, I just don't recall what it is.

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May 21st, 2014, 3:37 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
TheRealWags wrote:
regularjoe12 wrote:
TheRealWags wrote:
I'm sure there could be lots of reasons to bring it up now, but per the article
Quote:
In 1997, California went public with his claims about the origins of “Stairway to Heaven.” “I’d say it was a ripoff,” California said in Listener magazine. “And the guys made millions of bucks on it and never said ‘Thank you,’ never said, ‘Can we pay you some money for it?’ It’s kind of a sore point with me.” However, California and Spirit never sued, even though fans had noted the similarity between the songs for years. “Nobody had any money, and they thought the statute of limitations was done,” Mick Skidmore, who manages California’s trust, explained to Businessweek.
In the end, if the riff really is Spirit's, shouldn't they receive the credit?


If they didnt care 40 years ago, then I say no!

Im curious as to how this isnt in a statute of limitations...
So you're saying its ok to steal as long as you don't get caught or that someone doesn't care? So much for integrity and morality, eh? ](*,)


where did you come up with that??? The guy who wrote the song that was "ripped off" (I agree with Pablo BTW) didn't care enough to say a single word about it. this lawsuit isnt done by someone who felt their work was ripped off, or by someone who felt like they had been wronged. thsi lawsuit is set up by the TRUST of a dead songwriter.

If Randy California REALLY felt that way he had a whole lifetime to act on it, but guess what...he didnt. (I personally have to ask why not??) Now the trust fund babies come along and say, "hey that song sounds like my dads" and they get to sue?!?!??

you were questioning integrity...where is the integrity of that? the trust fun babies had nothing to do with the song.....from 45 YEARS AGO! Where is the integrity of THEM proffiting off of others?

this is just rediculous IMO.

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May 21st, 2014, 4:24 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
I agree that this is absurd. Not to mention the fact that the statute of limitations on copyright infringement for songs is 3 years. There is a loophole that says something about new releases or versions of a song also being subject to claim for infringement. And what do you know, there is a June 3, 2014 re-release of Led Zeppelin's first 3 albums. What a coincidence that this lawsuit is coming up at the same time! :roll:

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May 21st, 2014, 7:30 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
The guy called them out on it years ago, he just never did anything about it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taurus_(instrumental)#cite_note-3

The "Zeppelin are a bunch of thieves" meme has been around for a long, long time. This is not the first time they've been accused of stealing songs. More:

http://www.warr.org/zep.html#Thieves


May 21st, 2014, 7:47 pm
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Post Re: Led Zeppelin Is Getting Sued Over ‘Stairway to Heaven’
It's not ridiculous, lawsuits cost money. If you're not as famous as Led Zeppelin, chances are you can't afford to sue them. Their lawyers would just tie it up in court until you couldn't afford to continue. It's the same reason a lot of lawsuits never see the light of day. PLUS 40 years ago, there was no twitter or internet that spread news like wildfire. It was just word of mouth and unless someone really wanted to smear LZ, it wasn't going to get covered by Rolling Stone or any other noteworthy music media. You think this is the only case of Big band stealing songs from others? It's just swept under the rug. And yes, the new re-release of the albums allows the limitations to be reset. All those sampling lawsuits against rappers in the 90's set the precedent that will make this a legitimate case.


May 22nd, 2014, 4:05 am
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