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Led Zepplin Getting Sued By Spirit


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Led Zeppelin to be sued over Stairway to Heaven

1:56 PM Wednesday May 21, 2014

page_620x310.jpgJimmy Page accepts an an honorary degree of Doctor of Music at Berklee College of Music in Boston. Photo / AP

A lawyer in Philadelphia is gearing up to sue Led Zeppelin for allegedly pilfering another band's music when it composed and recorded its 1971 classic song Stairway to Heaven.

Francis Alexander Malofiy confirmed a report in Bloomberg Businessweek saying a copyright lawsuit is in the works, but declined to give details.

According to the magazine, the plaintiffs in the pending case allege Led Zeppelin lifted the opening riffs of Stairway to Heaven from a 1968 instrumental called Taurus recorded by the Los Angeles psychedelic band Spirit.

The plaintiffs include Spirit's founding bassist Mark Andes and the trust that manages royalties for the band's guitarist Randy California, who died in 1997.

Spirit and Led Zeppelin shared the stage during a US tour in 1969.

Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page is said to have started writing Stairway to Heaven in 1970 in a remote cottage in Wales.

Released the following year, it is widely regarded as one of the greatest rock tunes of all time.

Bloomberg Businessweek said the eight-minute song had earned US$562 million (NZ$656.24 million) as of 2008.

Earlier this month Led Zeppelin unveiled two previously unheard recordings ahead of the re-issue in June of its first three albums.

Page, now 70, scotched rumours of a reunion concert.

- AFP

Edited by Micmac
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It's dated tomorrow because I got it out of the New Zealand Herald. I did not time travel.

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It's dated tomorrow because I got it out of the New Zealand Herald. I did not time travel.

That's not to say you can't...you just didn't in this case.

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50 seconds in....

 

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That's not to say you can't...you just didn't in this case.

I choose not to on this day. I will do so the 1st week of June

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It's dated tomorrow because I got it out of the New Zealand Herald. I did not time travel.

 

I choose not to on this day. I will do so the 1st week of June

How was my week in the Bahamas? 1st of June

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funny how it takes ALL THIS TIME for the suit to come out....or is it coincidence someone is broke or looking to make some money off their deceased family members. Dont you think the band would have done it years earlier if they were really concerned or convinced of this? Not like nearly everyone in the world with a radio, turntable or local dance hall has heard Stairway to Heaven if they listen to rock or have in past 40 years. haha

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It's dated tomorrow because I got it out of the New Zealand Herald. I did not time travel.

 

I choose not to on this day. I will do so the 1st week of June

How was my week in the Bahamas? 1st of June

 

You had a wonderful time, and bought your friend MicMac a Rolex at duty free.

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From Wikipedia (I know, lazy googling according to parrot lovers)

 

Cases[edit]

Most cases of alleged plagiarism are settled out of court. Most artists try and settle for costs that will be less than defending costs. Since the 1850s federal courts have published fewer than 100 opinions dealing with this issue.[10] The Columbia Law School Library's Music Plagiarism Project provides information on many cases over the decades, with a few dating back to the 19th century.[11]

Successful suits and settlements[edit]
  • In March 1963, The Beach Boys released "Surfin' U.S.A." When the single was released in 1963, the record listed Brian Wilson as the sole composer although the song was published by Arc Music, Chuck Berry's publisher. Later releases, beginning with Best of The Beach Boys in 1966, listed Chuck Berry as the songwriter. Later releases list both writers although the copyright has always been owned, since 1963, by Arc Music. Under pressure from Berry's publisher, Wilson's father and manager, Murry Wilson, had given the copyright, including Brian Wilson's lyrics, to Arc Music.[12]
  • John Lennon's use of a line from Chuck Berry's "You Can't Catch Me" ("Here come up flat top / He was groovin' up slowly") in the 1969 Beatles' song "Come Together" ("Here comes ol' flat-top / He come groovin' up slowly") led to a lawsuit from Berry's publisher, Big Seven Music Corp. In 1973, a settlement was reached whereby Lennon agreed to record three of Big Seven's songs on his next album. Big Seven Music Corp. again sued Lennon for breach of contract, when his 1974 album, Walls and Bridges, failed to contain all three of the songs, with the court awarding the company US$6,795.[14]
  • Led Zeppelin's song "Whole Lotta Love" contained lyrics that were derivative of Willie Dixon's 1962 song "You Need Love." In 1985, Dixon filed a copyright infringement suit, resulting in an out-of-court settlement. Later pressings of Led Zeppelin II credit Dixon as co-writer.[18]
  • According to the book Sharp Dressed Men by former ZZ Top stage manager David Blayney, who was with the band for 15 years, sound engineer Linden Hudson co-wrote much of the material on the ZZ Top album Eliminator album as a live-in high-tech music teacher to band members Frank Beard and Billy Gibbons. Despite continued denials by the band, it settled a five-year legal battle with Hudson in 1986, paying him $600,000 after he proved he held the copyright to the song "Thug" which appeared on "Eliminator."[22]
  • American musician Les Paul was successfully sued for plagiarizing Romanian composer Richard Stein's "Sanie cu zurgălăi" (1937) as "Johnny (Is the Boy for Me)" (1953).[28]
  • A lawsuit filed by Tommy Dunbar and James Gangwer of the 1970s power pop band the Rubinoos alleged Avril Lavigne stole their song "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" and reworked it into her best-selling single "Girlfriend." The case was settled for an undisclosed sum in January 2008.[29]
  • The Black Eyed Peas were successfully sued by Ohio disc jockey Lynn Tolliver, claiming that his song "I Need a Freak" was sampled without his permission in the Black Eyed Peas song "My Humps." Lynn Tolliver won $1.2 million.[30]
  • In 2009, Norman Lurie, then the head of Larrikin Music, successfully sued the members of the disbanded Australian group Men at Work on the basis that "a pattern of notes in five bars of a 93-bar song"[31] in their hit "Down Under" sounded too much like the song "Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree," to which Larrikin owned the rights.
Unsuccessful suits[edit]
  • During the mid-1930s, Ira Arnstein became convinced that major pop songwriters had been illegally copying his work. During 1936–46 he brought forth five plagiarism lawsuits though none proved successful.[36][37]
  • The song "Thunderbird" was originally written and performed by the Nightcaps, a band formed in the 1950s when the members were teenagers. The Nightcaps performed the song and distributed it on their album Wine, Wine, Wine but never applied for copyright. ZZ Top began performing its version of the song in 1975, and has conceded that its version is lyrically and musically identical to the Nightcaps' song. The Nightcaps sued ZZ Top for, among other things, copyright infringement, but their claims were dismissed (in 1995) because, in part, ZZ Top had registered a copyright on the song in 1975.[40]
  • In 2003 Michael Cottrill and Lawrence E. Wnukowski claimed that Britney Spears’s "Can’t Make You Love Me," from her 2000 album Oops!... I Did It Again, misappropriated substantial melodic material from their "What You See is What You Get". The court was skeptical on the question of defendant's access to the plaintiff's work.[41]
  • Elton John, Bernie Taupin, and Big Pig Music, have been accused of plagiarism by South African photographer and songwriter Guy Hobbs. Hobbs wrote a song in 1982 entitled "Natasha," about a Russian waitress on a cruise ship, who was never allowed to leave it. The song was copyrighted in 1983, and sent to Big Pig Music (John's publisher) for a possible publishing deal, but Guy never heard back from the publisher. In 2001, Guy came across the lyric book to "Nikita" and noticed similarities with his song. Despite repeated attempts by Guy to contact John over the issue, he never heard from him, and commenced legal action in 2012.[48][49] On 31 October 2012, a federal judge granted John and Taupin's motion to dismiss, finding that the song did not infringe Hobbs's copyright because the only similar elements were generic images and themes that are not protected under copyright law.[50][51]
Unsettled, alleged, and forgiven incidents[edit]

The following are accusations of plagiarism appearing in notable media:

  • Ritchie Valens' 1959 song "Ooh! My Head" is a thinly veiled cover of Little Richard's 1958 single "Ooh! My Soul."[52] Richard was never credited in the Valens song.
  • Peter Meaden, manager of the High Numbers (before the band changed their name to the Who), has been accused of plagiarising a 1963 recording of "Misery" by the Dynamics, for their debut single B-side "Zoot Suit".[55] The A-side "I'm the Face" guitar and harmonica riffs are also very similar to Slim Harpo's "I've Got Love If You Want It". Both songs are credited only to Peter Meaden on the single.
  • The song "Babe I'm Gonna Leave You" by Led Zeppelin was thought to be a traditional song and was credited as "Trad. arr. Page" but it was actually written by folk singer Anne Bredon. Since 1990, the Led Zeppelin version has credited with Bredon, who received a substantial back-payment in royalties.[56]
  • Coldplay were briefly accused of copying portions of "Viva la Vida" from "The Songs I Didn't Write" by American alternative band Creaky Boards.[58]Creaky Boards later retracted the accusations and speculated that both songs may have been inspired by the video game The Legend of Zelda.[59]

The truth is, I seriously doubt that there is any negative intent there. And a lot of rock & roll songs sound alike. Ask
.
took "
" [for their song "
], and I saw an interview with them where they actually admitted it. That made me laugh out loud. I was like, "OK, good for you." It doesn’t bother me.

  • Korean pop artist G-Dragon has been accused of plagiarism by Sony Music, as his tracks "Heartbreaker" and "Butterfly" are similar to Flo Rida's "Right Round" and Oasis's "She's Electric", respectively.[63][64]
  • iTunes has found cases of musical plagiarism using software that automatically identifies a CD's track information when it's loaded, most notably the many instances with pianist Joyce Hatto.[65]
  • The Black Eyed Peas were charged in January 2010 by Ebony Latrice Batts (known on stage as Phoenix Phenom), claiming that "Boom Boom Pow" is just a copy of her song "Boom Dynamite," which she sent to Interscope Records, the Black Eyed Peas' record label. The suit is ongoing.[66]
  • Madonna has been accused of plagiarism by record label Vallejo Music Group (VMG).[69] VMG claims Madonna stole samples from the 1977 single "Ooh I Love It (Love Break)" by Salsoul Orchestra, for her 1990 charting song "Vogue". In the lawsuit, VMG allege that horns and strings were taken from the earlier track and used in "Vogue" without permission, and intentionally hidden within the mix.[70] The lawsuit was filed in July 2012 with the company seeking damages in addition to royalties gained from "Vogue".[71]
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lots of copying and borrowing all the time it appears.....just wonder why they wait so long to make a fuss about it.

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"The wheels of justice move slowly", or I finally found a lawyer who will take my absurd case.

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That song that LZ allegedly stole from (Taurus) pretty much sucks. A couple of notes that are similar doesn't count as plagiarism (in my opinion...I ain't no ambulance chaser, so what do I know?).

I think this lawsuit should be thrown out.

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well wouldn't they have to PROVE Led Zepplin actually HEARD this song before recording theirs?

 

I would say 1 song was 1968 & the other 1971......2014 you missed the boat trying to panhandle any cash off LZ for it

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Spirit & Led Zep toured together in '69.

 

Spirit played Taurus during those concerts & the melody got in J Pages head then.

 

I think they will settle as they have manyXs in the past.

 

LZ ~ claiming ownership of the work of others is nothing new.

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*Stairway To Heaven

Written by Jimmy Page, inspired by Randy California

 

 

 

 

$2,5000,000 to the estate of Randy California who died rescuing his teen-age son from a rip current in 1997 while surfing.

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Randy C. was quoted long ago as saying he was pissed that LZ stole his idea - that they could have at least called and said thanks. So the idea was there long ago.

 

But speaking as both an ambulance chaser and a musician, I don't hear enough similarity in the tunes to found a successful claim. That descending riff has been used in countless tunes. But that's just my useless opinion.

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Spirit & Led Zep toured together in '69.

 

Spirit played Taurus during those concerts & the melody got in J Pages head then.

 

I think they will settle as they have manyXs in the past.

 

LZ ~ claiming ownership of the work of others is nothing new.

They played that song in concert?!

Why?...Were they trying to put the audience to sleep or get them to leave?

 

Randy C. was quoted long ago as saying he was pissed that LZ stole his idea - that they could have at least called and said thanks. So the idea was there long ago.

 

But speaking as both an ambulance chaser and a musician, I don't hear enough similarity in the tunes to found a successful claim. That descending riff has been used in countless tunes. But that's just my useless opinion.

I uselessly agree with your useless opinion. :rasp:

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Will the insanity never stop?

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"Let's kill all the lawyers Kill em tonight" :)

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Okay I'll let Don Henley know ;)

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Plain stupid! 40+ years after the fact.

 

Q: What's the difference between a vacuum cleaner and a lawyer on a motorcycle?

 

A: The vacuum cleaner has the dirt bag on the inside.

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