Led Zeppelin Could End “Stairway To Heaven” Lawsuit For $1
Led Zeppelin are facing a jury trial for alleged copyright infringement of their seminal hit "Stairway to Heaven." A District Court Judge has ruled that the hit was similar enough to the '67 instrumental "Taurus" by Spirit to warrant a trial. But the plaintiff's have offered Led Zep an easy way out.
Attorneys suing Robert Plant and Jimmy Page over the the origin of "Stairway To Heaven" say they and their client are willing to settle the lawsuit for just $1. The catch is that Plant and Jimmy Page would have to give Spirit's Randy California a writing credit. That could mean millions to California's estate going forward.
"It's always been about credit where credit is due," Spirit's attorney Francis Alexander Malofiy told Bloomberg.
Should Page & Plant Settle?
Musicologists differ somewhat on the strength of the accusations against Led Zeppelin, though most feel it is weak given that the intro to the song is based on a common chord progression. And early rulings by the judge have limited the scope of California's case and the evidence to be presented.
But the decision of guilt or innocence is not being made by the judge. A jury of average citizens will decide; and jury's are notoriously unpredictable.
Just ask Pharrell and Robin Thicke.
Listen and compare here.