Did Led Zeppelin Plagiarize ‘Stairway’?

So I’m happily cruising through my day today, when suddenly this article pops up on my radar. Being a trained librarian and all, I’m a sucker for anything plagiarism-related, and something this well known would make an awesome example. Led Zeppelin ripping off the music to one of the group’s best known songs? So I give the song a listen:

Okay . . . There’s the same chord progression in spots. I’ll grant them that. But here’s Stairway (in case you need a little live Zeppelin for your Tuesday. And who doesn’t?)

I’m sorry. There’s no story here. Chord progressions doth not plagiarism make. Otherwise, ol’ Johann Sebastian might come looking for a few lawsuits of his own. Now, if you want to see actual ripping off at work, let’s stop, collaborate and listen:

Calling Mr. Bowie and Queen. Mr. David Bowie and Queen! Please report to the front desk to pick up your ripped off material.

That’s sampling without permission there, folks. That’s got some lawsuit potential. (Word is they settled out of court.) But this Zeppelin thing? It seems like a good way to get a lot of people to listen to that first video up there and hope that other people start loving your music. So let’s not end on that note. How about some Zeppelin/Sabbath mashup goodness to give an ironic parting shot across the plagiarism bow this fine day? Enjoy, peoples. And don’t mess with Zeppelin unless you’ve actually got a leg to stand on.

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