Robert Plant

Both Robert Plant and Jimmy Page plan to be present for the Stairway to Heaven trial brought against the pair by the estate of Spirit songwriter Randy California. The suit alleges that Plant and Page, while part of Led Zeppelin, appropriated a guitar part from the Spirit instrumental Taurus for the intro of Stairway. Zeppelin had opened for Spirit during a 1968 tour and the lawsuit says they would have heard the song during that time. The trial was scheduled to start May 10 but was pushed to June 14 after the Zepplin’s lawyers claimed that the attorneys for California trustee Michael Skidmore were trying to taint the jury pool by claiming that none of the Zeppelin members were going to attend the trial, showing that they weren’t taking the suit seriously. While he wasn’t a songwriter for Stairway, the third surviving Zeppelin member, John Paul Jones, will also be attending the trial. As a result of the trial, Plant has been forced to cancel his appearance at “The Ship We’re In” benefit show, that was part of the Meltdown Festival, that was scheduled for June 19 at Royal Festival Hall. Plant’s representative said “It is with great disappointment that Robert must cancel his appearance. Robert has been enthusiastic to help in any way to the increased awareness and support of so many powerless and distraught peoples. Therefore the opportunity afforded at Guy Garvey’s Meltdown was an event that Robert was passionately drawn to.”