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jim6225

Lawsuit over Stairway to Heaven

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One song is a descending sequence of notes and the other song is an ascending sequence of notes, in quick passing to an ear not paying attention the acoustic bit might sound the same, but to anyone giving it any real attention can clearly hear different order in the sequence of notes. This is such a stupid lawsuit...

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On Thursday (2/25/16), Led Zeppelin guitarist and songwriter Jimmy Page gave a remarkable declaration in court where he admits to discovering a copy of Spirit's first album in his record collection. "I had not previously seen it in my collection and do not know how or where it got there," states Page. "It may well have been left by a guest. I doubt it was there for long, since I never noticed it before. But, again, I know I did not hear Taurus until 2014."

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blabbermouth

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Did Spirit ever play Taurus live when they toured with Zep?

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3 hours ago, IpMan said:

Did Spirit ever play Taurus live when they toured with Zep?

Spirit never toured with Led Zeppelin. They played a total of three shows, two of them music festivals.

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I've discounted a Lot of Page's "borrowing" over the years; but now : to say in court that he "never heard Taurus"; didn't own any  Spirit records; nor  ever hear Spirit play live-is just a lie. I have a cassette interview of Page that was recorded off the radio in 1976 or 77, and he clearly states that Spirit and Kaleidoscope were 2 of the "best bands" he ever saw in the States. Now he denies all this. He lost me this time.

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4 hours ago, RIP-IT-UP said:

I've discounted a Lot of Page's "borrowing" over the years; but now : to say in court that he "never heard Taurus"; didn't own any  Spirit records; nor  ever hear Spirit play live-is just a lie. I have a cassette interview of Page that was recorded off the radio in 1976 or 77, and he clearly states that Spirit and Kaleidoscope were 2 of the "best bands" he ever saw in the States. Now he denies all this. He lost me this time.

  So playing three shows at a music festival 47 years ago means Page should absolutely remember Spirit?

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Page claimed in the interview, as I stated above, that" Spirit was one of the best bands" he ever saw "in the States". This interview was done shortly after TSRTS, because a lot of the questions during the broadcast interview pertained to the movie.   However, the point is that a full 7+ years after playing shows with Spirit/ and or seeing Spirit live (i.e. 1969)-he still said this years later.  Over the years, Page must have seen dozens of bands in the States from the 60's right thru to the time of this interview. And he still chose  to point out Spirit as a favorite.    So , yes he clearly remembered Spirit.  No one would state a band as one of the best if they didn't remember them, yes? ( I won't even go into the fact that Zep put part of Spirit's "Fresh Garbage" tune into their live cover of "As long as I have you" medley, as documented via bootleg in the famous San Francisco 04/27/69 concert.)

Edited by RIP-IT-UP

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I wonder what he'd say today if he heard an actual audio recording of himself saying that.  I suppose
he could say he was bull-shitting with the interviewer. Haha
:lol: talk about a little fib coming back to
bite you eh.  I  do get the feeling it can't be used as evidence though.  Still I'm sure R C's side is digging
up that stuff.

One thing I will say is, before this case I myself had never heard of Taurus, Spirit or Randy California
How many people would be Googling this band if this was Spirit VS the band Blah Blah and the song
Blah Blah Blah.  There mere fact it involves Led Zeppelin and Stairway gives Spirit some major plugging
that's free - minus legal fees.

If this actually goes to trial how sad that besides the Kennedy Honors in 2012 this would be what brings
Jimmy,  Plant and Jones to the same place  on U S soil together. Never mind a cool interview or something
really good.  Nope  a joke of a plagiarism case in a the state of California. 

I think it will be tossed out.

 

Edited by KellyGirl

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2 hours ago, KellyGirl said:

I wonder what he'd say today if he heard an actual audio recording of himself saying that.  I suppose
he could say he was bull-shitting with the interviewer. Haha
:lol: talk about a little fib coming back to
bite you eh.  I  do get the feeling it can't be used as evidence though.  Still I'm sure R C's side is digging
up that stuff.

One thing I will say is, before this case I myself had never heard of Taurus, Spirit or Randy California
How many people would be Googling this band if this was Spirit VS the band Blah Blah and the song
Blah Blah Blah.  There mere fact it involves Led Zeppelin and Stairway gives Spirit some major plugging
that's free - minus legal fees.

If this actually goes to trial how sad that besides the Kennedy Honors in 2012 this would be what brings
Jimmy,  Plant and Jones to the same place  on U S soil together. Never mind a cool interview or something
really good.  Nope  a joke of a plagiarism case in a the state of California. 

I think it will be tossed out.

 

I first heard "Spirit" their first album forty-ish years ago, I've always thought there was "some" similarity  between the opening of STH and Taurus.  Spirit were always more of a cult band and as their leader, Randy California died almost twenty years ago there has been no new product to keep them on the radar. They've been almost forgotten  until Mark Andes brought up this spurious lawsuit, Similar does not mean the same.

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23 hours ago, RIP-IT-UP said:

I've discounted a Lot of Page's "borrowing" over the years; but now : to say in court that he "never heard Taurus"; didn't own any  Spirit records; nor  ever hear Spirit play live-is just a lie. I have a cassette interview of Page that was recorded off the radio in 1976 or 77, and he clearly states that Spirit and Kaleidoscope were 2 of the "best bands" he ever saw in the States. Now he denies all this. He lost me this time.

I think you are reading that wrong. He said he never heard Taurus and did not own the first Spirit album until recently. That can in fact be 100% true and still be consistent with his statement from 1976. For the longest time I never owned a Cure album yet I knew many of their songs and was a big fan. I also played and continue to play Cure songs when I perform, however I do not know nor have heard every single Cure tune. The two statements do not have to be exclusive in any way. So, they played a total of three gig's together and it stands at 50 / 50 that Spirit performed Taurus during one of those three sets. Then, there is the added likelihood that even if they did perform that tune all three nights, too, or one night, Jimmy could have been getting blown backstage while coked up and the last thing on his mind was what the fuck was being played by who the fuck. 

By that logic Jimmy should be able to play I am Eighteen by Alice Cooper because they performed together in 69', maybe he can, maybe he cannot recall if they played it, maybe he did not even hear the song until 1975...who knows?

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Taurus was not played at any of the three shows that they played together according to witnesses and existing set lists.

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I find Michael Skidmore's claim that Page asked California to teach him the chords to Taurus when they toured together very hard to believe.

Edited by timothy5151

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What I find funny is the obvious fact the Davey Graham's Cry Me a River released in 1959 is virtually identical to the riff structure of Taurus, however Stairway differs substantially from both compositions. I truly feel if the defense points this out both through an audio example & through sheet music comparison, the lawsuit is dead. Then again, in this day and age, anything is possible.

Frigging vampires.

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3 hours ago, IpMan said:

What I find funny is the obvious fact the Davey Graham's Cry Me a River released in 1959 is virtually identical to the riff structure of Taurus, however Stairway differs substantially from both compositions. I truly feel if the defense points this out both through an audio example & through sheet music comparison, the lawsuit is dead. Then again, in this day and age, anything is possible.

Frigging vampires.

Totally agree re. Cry Me a River, this would seem to be the definitive proof that the lawsuit has no merit.  Yet, here it is, going to trial.  Make no mistake, this latest development is very bad for the Zep camp.  At this stage, Page et al. need to start making some serious offers (i.e. more serious than the ones they've doubtless already made) to settle, while they still have room to spin things.  There is now a very good chance they lose this thing in court. 

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Oh. Ugh. I was hoping it wouldn't get this far. I can't believe they haven't presented some
of the song examples you are all naming off as a way to prove how redonk
:wacko: this case is.
Maybe that stuff will be used as evidence at the actual trial, because what's been presented
so far has not been good enough...apparently.. Sigh...

A trial by jury. How does this work in song writing cases? Who makes up the jury? Are these
just random chosen American citizens of Los Angeles being summoned? That could be both
scary and awesome.  I assume it's a panel/group of people who understand and grasp both
music composition and copyright laws. People who know specifically what to look for in these
kinds of cases. Well damn I hope it's the latter. A bit weird if it's 12 people hanging out in a room
listening to fan made Youtube clips of the opening to Stairway and a song that  the "average"
person on the street has never heard of.

I really can't imagine anybody but Jimmy Page and Robert Plant's names going down for the
writing of Stairway To Heaven.  A sad day in music if that was to change.  It won't.  I'm going
with a Pollyanna attitude. The jury will get this right!  Zep will win this one way or another 
:banana:

Thanks for the updates :)

Edited by KellyGirl

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6 minutes ago, Versus said:

Plaintiffs prevailing?? I think you got that wrong. Led Zeppelin in this case are the defendants not the plaintiffs.

I understand that, of course.  Perhaps I phrased things awkwardly, although it seemed clear enough;  you think there is a very low probability the plaintiffs will win, I think that belief is unfounded.  The recent court decisions certainly don't make this look like an annoyance anymore. 

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On 2/27/2016 at 1:37 PM, luvlz2 said:

On Thursday (2/25/16), Led Zeppelin guitarist and songwriter Jimmy Page gave a remarkable declaration in court where he admits to discovering a copy of Spirit's first album in his record collection. "I had not previously seen it in my collection and do not know how or where it got there," states Page. "It may well have been left by a guest. I doubt it was there for long, since I never noticed it before. But, again, I know I did not hear Taurus until 2014."

link

blabbermouth

 

Just now, timothy5151 said:

I find Michael Skidmore's claim that Page asked California to teach him the chords to Taurus when they toured together very hard to believe.

Wouldn't the above be considered "heresay"?  Is heresay admissible in civil trials?  Randy California is dead so Zep's lawyers can't take his deposition or cross examine him.   

Edited by Disco Duck
addition

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If Robin Thicke's appeal pf the Marvin Gaye family lawsuit is successful, then the Stairway lawsuit stands a better chance of going away. How much do we agree as music listeners that "He's so fine" by the Chiffons sounds like "My Sweet Lord" by George Harrison?  This listener hears the similarity but disagrees with the outcome of that lawsuit. This music listener likes a legal landscape that allows for innovative re-interpretations as imagined by the likes of The Beastie Boys on Paul's Boutique and Tribe Called Quest on Low End Theory. I support innovation, parody, re-interpreation, and standing on the shoulders of giants. I hope the law chooses not to strangle creativity or create new legal hassles for musicians. It's a little frustrating watching non-originators fight over their dead relatives publishing rights. At least the Jimi Hendrix family has some kind of eye on quality.

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As a professional musician and current law-student, I must say I'm puzzled how this "case" is admitted into court in the first place.

To me these songs sound nothing alike. If you really want to, you could hear a resemblance . But where does it end? 

First off, I'd say sue Eric Clapton as well. His song "Let it Grow" (461 Ocean Boulevard) has more resemblance to "Stairway to Heaven" than

the latter to "Taurus". Especially the ending of "Let it Grow". 

Don't get me wrong, I really love that song, but that's what happens in art; we get inspired by it. And if you're an artist, you could find yourself creating something out of that inspiration.

And than one has to tread carefully. I remember once writing something which I thought was cool. When I played it before my teacher though, he said it sounded exactly like another song. He was right. It happened to be an instrumental

I heard only once and at least a year before. So yeah, our brain is a strange place. I could imagine something like this happening to Jimmy Page in respect to this Taurus song. Or it's just b.s.

And like I said, where does this end? Ed Sheeran might think that Adele's "Hello" resembles his "I See Fire" a little too much and I might agree with him. And so on, and so on....

 

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What a BS...Always those incapable to rise to fame will find a way to compensate for their mediocrity. If some sculptor takes a rock and makes a masterpiece worth 20 millions, those who owned that $2 rock will ask for a cut from what that rock became.
 

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