It’s probably impossible that you haven’t heard Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven” by now. The opening sequence is one of the most recognized guitar riffs in the world, but did they snake it from someone else?
In 1968, the band Spirit released a song called “Taurus”, and the intro sounds suspiciously similar to “Stairway to Heaven”. Both songs were released years ago but it’s just now that a Pennsylvanian judge allowed a lawsuit to move forward.
Randy California, the late lead singer of Spirit and the songwriter for the song “Taurus”, passed away in 1998 and his heirs are now seeking compensation for the “plagiarism”.
Eriq Gardner of The Hollywood Reporter tells NPR’s Arun Rath that “the judge will basically hear both songs, both sides will bring forth musicologists, and they’ll debate whether the songs are really similar.”
So it looks like we will have to wait and see how this plays out. In the mean time, listen for yourself and you be the judge: