By Radio.com Staff
Led Zeppelin have beaten a lawsuit claiming they lifted the intro to “Stairway to Heaven.”
The lawsuit, filed by the estate of late Spirit guitarist Randy California, claims that Zeppelin copied the opening of Spirit’s 1968 track “Taurus” for the beginning of their 1971 hit “Stairway to Heaven.” The estate filed the suit in 2014 over alleged similarities between the two songs and was seeking royalties from the track.
Both Jimmy Page and Robert Plant were called to to testify in the proceedings, each denied having heard the track, or copying it.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the jury believed Spirit did own the copyright to “Taurus,” and that the members of Led Zeppelin had heard it, but that “there was no substantial similarity in the extrinsic elements of ‘Taurus’ and ‘Stairway to Heaven.’”
Page and Plant released a joint statement after the verdict. “We are grateful for the jury’s conscientious service and pleased that it has ruled in our favor, putting to rest questions about the origins of ‘Stairway to Heaven’ and confirming what we have known for 45 years. We appreciate our fans’ support, and look forward to putting this legal matter behind us.”