Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant admits he can’t read music or ‘remember the 60s’ as the jury retires in Stairway to Heaven plagiarism case

A US jury retired Wednesday to determine whether or not Led Zeppelin poached the iconic opening guitar riff in Stairway To Heaven from an obscure Los Angeles rock band.

Zeppelin songwriting duo Robert Plant and Jimmy Page have denied plagiarizing the introduction to the 1971 song from Taurus, an instrumental track by the long-defunct 1960s group Spirit.

The case was brought in federal court in Los Angeles by Michael Skidmore, the trustee and friend of Spirit guitarist Randy California, who drowned in 1997 having never taken legal action over the song.

Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant has testified that a serious car crash left him with no memory of watching Spirit perform.

Plant, 67, said he could not remember watching Spirit at Birmingham’s Mothers club in 1970 after he was involved in a serious car crash with his wife that night.

‘I can’t recall Spirit or anybody else playing there with the passing of time,’ he said.’I don’t have a recollection of mostly anyone I’ve met,’ Plant added, prompting laughter in the courtroom.

  • WalterBannon
  • Norman_In_New_York

    You want to hear plagiarism? Play the first movement of Mozart’s 25th Symphony and the first movement of Beethoven’s first piano sonata. It’s a good thing music copyright laws weren’t what they are now or old Ludwig would be in deep shit.

    • Justin St.Denis

      My music teacher used to rail on about that very issue. He hated Beethoven because of it. I just hate bombastic music. Mozart rules! Along with Debussy, Copeland and Scriabin. I’m eclectic…..

  • Clausewitz

    Musicians steal from one another. Who knew?

  • Justin St.Denis

    I found Jimmy Page’s testimony interesting. He admitted that he once had misgivings that he might have subconsciously lifted the opening of Stairway To Heaven from the opening chords of “Chim-Chim-Cheree” from the soundtrack of MARY POPPINS, a very popular film and Broadway show of the period. Page has a very good point…….

  • Minicapt

    “The day the music stopped …”