Thursday, May 7, 2015

Led Zeppelin: Stairway To Heaven lawsuit moves to US federal court

A Philadelphia judge is allowing a copyright infringement suit against Led Zeppelin over “Stairway To Heaven” to proceed after denying a request by the group’s lawyers to have it dismissed.

Bloomberg reports the suit - brought by the estate of Spirit guitarist Randy California and members of the band – claims the acoustic introduction to “Stairway” was lifted from their 1968 instrumental, “Taurus.”

The two bands crossed paths during Zeppelin’s first US tour, which saw the future rock legends open for Vanilla Fudge and Spirit, and that’s where the Los Angeles band claims Jimmy Page was exposed to “Taurus.”

The Philadelphia judge has ordered the case to be transferred to federal court in Los Angeles.

The new venue, the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, Western Division, is the same court where a jury ruled in March that Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke should pay $7.4 million for infringing on Marvin Gaye's 1977 track “Got To Give It Up” with their 2013 hit, “Blurred Lines.”

Spirit guitarist Randy California drowned while rescuing his 12-year-old son from a rip current in Hawaii in early 1997.

Last year, Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page called the lawsuit “ridiculous.”

See also:

Led Zeppelin premiere Trampled Under Foot interactive video
VIDEO: Robert Plant and Jack White perform Led Zeppelin classic
Led Zeppelin US theater event song list unveiled
Robert Plant announces North American tour
Search Led Zeppelin at hennemusic