Tag Archives: Taurus

Update to blog from 10/29/2011 Spirit is sueing Led Zeppelin over “Stairway to Heaven”!

When I first wrote about the question of Led Zeppelin ripping off Spirit’s song “Taurus” as the basis for “Stairway to Heaven”, I got a number of very heated comments.  The opinions split right down the middle of pro and con.  Now the question will be settled in court.

The heirs of Randy California (Lead Guitar and founding member of Spirit) are suing Led Zeppelin to gain co-song writing credit for the song “Stairway to Heaven:.  The suit alleges that Jimmy Page copied the opening of the Spirit song “Taurus”  and used it as the basis of “Stairway to Heaven”.  The band’s original bass player has also joined the suit.

There is no doubt that Jimmy Page and Randy California were friends and that Page admired the music and performance ability of Spirit.  The instrumental “Taurus” was a staple of Spirit’s live shows.  There can be no doubt that Jimmy Page watched Spirit perform the song several times.  Zeppelin opened for Spirit on Zep’s first American tour.

The stakes are very high.  “Stairway to Heaven” has grossed at least $600 million dollars for the surviving members of Zeppelin.

“Stairway” also bears a striking resemblance to a song by The Chocolate Watch Factory.  They had a song called “And She’s Lonely”.  Page would have heard this song when “The Watch Factory” toured with his band “The Yardbirds”.  The plot thickens… Now the courts will decide.

I’ll keep you posted.  If you’d like to make your own comparison, check out my blog from 10/29/2011.  You can hear the song “Taurus” and draw your own conclusion.

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Posted in Life Events, Rock Music | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Did Led Zeppelin Rip Off Spirit???? The Story of Spirit Continued…

 

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So my Spirit posting last week brought out some great comments from my faithful readers.  First my brother brought up the story that Jimmy Page and Led Zeppelin ripped off the guitar intro to “Stairway to Heaven” from Spirits song “Taurus”.  I had left this story out because I could not find the song and hear it myself.  My brother sent me the song by Dropbox so I’ll share it with you now and let you decide for yourself.

Taurus

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So what do you think? Pretty obvious isn’t it?

Next I received a comment from a reader who goes by the name realgreecer.  He is circulating an on-line petition to get Spirit inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  I think this is long over due so I signed the petition immediately and I am posting the link to the petition below.  Please sign it and tell others you know to do so as well.  Let’s get this terrible oversight corrected as soon as possible.

http://www.petitiononline.com/12dreams/petition.html

Wouldn’t be funny to have Neil Young be the inductor for Spirit.  He and Randy California used to be friends.  There is a famous story about one of the reunion tours of Spirit where Neil Young tried to walk out on stage to sing “Like a Rolling Stone” with the band.  The keyboard player John Locke had invited Neil to join the band for the encore but Randy didn’t know anything about it.  Randy felt Neil was trying to upstage him on his comeback tour so he punched out Neil Young and pushed him off the stage!  John Locke got so angry about it that he stood up and announced that he was leaving the band and walked off stage.  That ended the 1975 come back tour of Spirit.  Last is the synthesizer that Randy California introduced to Jimmy Page called the Theremin.  Several readers weren’t sure what I was talking about so I am posting a photo of a Theremin below.


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Thanks for all the great comments and keep ’em comin’!

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Posted in Life Events, Vinyl | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments