Led Zepplin frontman Robert Plant.
Led Zepplin frontman Robert Plant. AP

Led Zeppelin rockers to face Stairway to Heaven trial

LED Zeppelin's lead singer Robert Plant and guitarist Jimmy Page will face a US jury trial next month over whether they stole the opening chords for their 1971 hit Stairway to Heaven.

District Judge Gary Klausner ruled that Stairway and the 1967 instrumental Taurus by the band Spirit, were similar enough to let a jury decide whether Plant and Page were liable for copyright infringement.

A trial is scheduled for May 10.

The lawsuit was brought by Michael Skidmore, a trustee for the late Randy Wolfe, also known as Randy California, who was Spirit's guitarist and the composer of Taurus.

Mr Skidmore said Page might have been inspired to write Stairway for Led Zeppelin after hearing Spirit perform Taurus while the bands toured together in 1968 and 1969, but that Wolfe never got credit.

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