Stairway to lawsuit?

What do The Doryphoros and Led Zeppelin have in common? Both classics took inspiration from other artists—at least, so a lawsuit filed against the U.K. rock band claims. 

The Doryphoros is a Roman copy of an earlier Greek work. No problem there. But the “descending chromatic four-chord progression” that starts the song “Stairway to Heaven” may have been lifted from another song, “Taurus,” written by Randy Wolfe for the band Spirit. A trustee for Wolfe’s estate is now suing the band members of Led Zeppelin for copyright infringement. Previous plagiarism charges against the band have resulted in a revision of credits on its albums to include the names of the accusing songwriters.   —Diane Richard, writer, June 8, 2016


Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty Images

News source: Ben Sisario, “Led Zeppelin’s ‘Stairway to Heaven’ to Be Scrutinized in Court in Copyright Case,” The New York Times, June 5, 2016