Samiksha Jaiswal

Taurus (instrumental)

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Released  January 22, 1968
Length  2:37
Writer(s)  Randy California
Recorded  November 1967
Label  Epic Records
Genre  Psychedelic rock, progressive rock

"Taurus" is a rock instrumental by American rock band Spirit, originally released on their self-titled debut album in 1968. The track, composed by guitarist/singer Randy California, was recorded in November 1967. It has been alleged that Jimmy Page borrowed the descending guitar figure from "Taurus" for Led Zeppelin's signature tune "Stairway to Heaven". Led Zeppelin opened for Spirit in an early American tour, providing the possibility that Led Zeppelin had heard the Spirit song before "Stairway to Heaven" was written. In the liner notes to the 1996 reissue of Spirit's debut album, songwriter Randy California writes:

People always ask me why "Stairway to Heaven" sounds exactly like "Taurus", which was released two years earlier. I know Led Zeppelin also played "Fresh Garbage" in their live set. They opened up for us on their first American tour.

In May 2014, an attorney hired by Randy California's estate announced plans to file a copyright infringement suit that will seek a co-writing credit for California on "Stairway to Heaven." In April 2016, district judge Gary Klausner ruled that there were sufficient similarities between the songs that Jimmy Page and Robert Plant (who is credited as co-writer of "Stairway to Heaven") would stand trial by jury for copyright infringement. The trial began on June 14, 2016. On June 15, 2016, Jimmy Page spent hours on the witness stand testifying. The trial concluded June 23, 2016 with the jury finding that Led Zeppelin was not guilty of plagiarism. The jury was not allowed to hear original recordings of the songs; instead they heard an expert perform both songs in court using original sheet music.

References

Taurus (instrumental) Wikipedia


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