Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page, left, and Robert Plant (pictured in 2012) are being accused of stealing the famous opening of “Stairway to Heaven” from a 1960s California band called Spirit. (Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page, left, and Robert Plant (pictured in 2012) are being accused of stealing the famous opening of “Stairway to Heaven” from a 1960s California band called Spirit. (Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Scoop: Led Zep in court over ‘Stairway to Heaven’

The battle’s on over the Led Zeppelin classic “Stairway to Heaven.”

Rock royalty turned out Tuesday in Los Angeles federal court for the civil trial in which the estate of late guitarist Randy “California” Wolfe has accused Jimmy Page and Robert Plant of stealing what might be rock and roll’s most recognizable riff.

A trustee for Wolfe’s estate claims Page and Plant picked up the tune from the song “Taurus,” but attorney Peter Anderson said evidence will show that the English songwriters did not violate the copyright of Wolfe’s instrumental.

Rolling Stone reporter Matt Diehl described a fun scene on opening day, mentioning an interesting cast of characters — in addition to the legendary Plant and Page — expected to appear throughout the trial, presided over by Judge Gregory Klausner (who amusingly referred to the defendants as “the Led Zeppelin”).

In his statement to the court, the plaintiff’s attorney Francis Malofiy indicated that Spirit members Mark Andes and Jay Ferguson, Linda Mensch (wife of manager Peter Mensch), music biz legend Lou Adler and Guitar World editor Brad Tolinski, who wrote 2013’s “Light and Shade: Conversations with Jimmy Page,” would appear or testify in court.

The defense’s witness list included one name: Zep bassist and co-founder John Paul Jones.

Stay tuned!


LIL WAYNE’S OK

Despite what many are speculating, all is well with Lil Wayne.

On Tuesday, his representatives issued a statement to Entertainment Weekly, saying that the 33-year-old rapper, under treatment by his own doctors, is “in stable condition and good spirits” after suffering two “minor” seizures.

Derek Sherron, publicity director of The Chamber Group, said, “He thanks his fans for their everlasting support, prayers and well wishes.”

On Monday, TMZ busily reported that the entertainer had two seizures, prompting his private jet to make two emergency landings before he was hospitalized in Omaha, Neb. The site also mentioned similar incidences in 2012 and 2013 — one seizure on the set of a Nicki Minaj video — and that fact that the star had been seen “double-cupping a lot of codeine syrup” may have had something to do with his infirmity.

TREASURE ISLAND LINEUP

The 10th Treasure Island Music Festival on Oct. 15-16 (and its last on the island) features headliners Sigur Rós and Ice Cube, as well as James Blake, Purity Ring, ZHU, Glass Animals, Tycho, Duke Dumont, Mac DeMarco, Young Thug, Flight Facilities, Sylvan Esso, Christine and the Queens, Stormzy, Neon Indian, Wild Nothing, Kelala, HONNE, Hinds and Day Wave,

HAPPY BIRTHDAY

Former S.F. Giant Tim Lincecum is 32. … Actor Neil Patrick Harris is 43. … Actress Leah Remini is 46. … Rapper-actor Ice Cube is 47. … Actress Courteney Cox is 52. … Actress Helen Hunt is 53.

— Wire reports

Ice CubeJimmy PageLed ZeppelinLIL WAYNERobert PlantseizureSigur RosSpiritStairway to HeavenTaurusTreasure Island

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott leaves the scene of an officer-involved shooting at Brannan Street and Jack London Alley in the South Park area on Friday, May 7, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Chief Scott issues rare apology to man shot by SF police

Officer says he ‘did not intend for his firearm to go off’

Despite the pandemic, San Francisco has ended the fiscal year with a budget surplus. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Better than expected tax revenues leave city with $157.3M surplus for this year

As the fiscal year nears an end and Mayor London Breed prepares… Continue reading

Passengers board a BART train bound for the San Francisco Airport at Powell Street station. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
BART bumps up service restoration to August 30, offers fare discounts

Rail agency breaks pandemic ridership records, prepares to welcome more passengers

Ashley and Michelle Monterrosa hold a photo of their brother Sean Monterrosa, who was killed by a Vallejo police officer early Tuesday morning, as they are comforted at a memorial rally at the 24th Street Mission BART plaza on Friday, June 5, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
State Department of Justice to investigate Sean Monterrosa shooting by Vallejo police

Attorney General Rob Bonta steps in after Solano County DA declines case

Gov. Gavin Newsom, show here speaking at the City College of San Francisco mass vaccination site in April, faces a recall election due to anger on the right over his handling of the pandemic, among other issues. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Why Gavin Newsom’s popularity could work against him in the recall election

Top pollster: ‘We’re not seeing the Democrats engaged in this election. And that may be a problem…’

Most Read