Nige breathes huge sigh of relief as Led Zeppelin wins case

Led Zeppelin has won the case taken against them accusing the band of ripping off Stairway to Heaven.

It’s long, it’s classic and, a jury decided on Thursday, it’s an original.

Led Zeppelin did not steal the opening riff of its rock anthem “Stairway to Heaven,” a federal jury ruled here, giving the band a victory in a copyright case in which millions of dollars were at stake.

The case pitted an obscure song from the margins of rock history against one of the canonical hits of the genre. The suit was filed two years ago by Michael Skidmore, a trustee for the songs of Randy Wolfe, a member of the band Spirit. It contends that the Led Zeppelin members Jimmy Page and Robert Plant had lifted substantial portions of the Spirit song “Taurus,” from 1968, for the beginning of “Stairway to Heaven,” which was released in 1971 and, by some estimates, has earned more than $500 million.  

Mr. Wolfe died in 1997 and complained of the similarity in interviews but never brought a suit. The case was filed shortly after a Supreme Court ruling allowed copyright infringement cases to go forward even after long delays.

Lawyers for Mr. Skidmore presented evidence showing that the bands crossed paths while touring early in their careers, as well as testimony from music experts saying that both songs shared a similar chord progression and, most distinctively, a descending bass line in a chromatic scale.

Mr. Plant and Mr. Page both testified that “Stairway to Heaven” had been composed independently, and that while both bands had played on the same bill a handful of times, they did not recall ever seeing Spirit perform and had no familiarity with “Taurus” until the lawsuit was brought.

“I didn’t remember it then, and I don’t remember it now,” Mr. Plant said.

The jury found that, although Mr. Page and Mr. Plant had access to “Taurus” before the release of “Stairway to Heaven,” the two songs’ original elements did not contain enough similarities. Before reaching the verdict on Thursday, the jury asked to listen to audio recordings of the introductions to both songs twice.

Every bogan in West Auckland can now put their loved ones to rest without any problems. They’ll be relieved.

Nige is reported to be extremely happy and ate two pies for lunch in celebration, shelving plans to buy some crochet shorts.

 – NY Times


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.

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