The ‘Stairway To Heaven’ case is now underway and it’s getting messy…
Yesterday was Jimmy Page’s turn to take the stand in the ‘Stairway To Heaven’ case. Page’s main claim since the beginning has been that he had never heard ‘Taurus’ — well not until recently anyway. According to Page he only heard the Spirit song when his son-in-law found it on the internet and apparently brought the song to his attention.
Francis Malofiy (the opposing attorney) finds this hard to believe, considering Page had a copy of the Spirit album with the ‘Taurus’ track on it. Page doesn’t deny that this very album has been in his personal collection.
Page didn’t waver from his initial claim of not hearing the track at the time, but he did proclaim that he has over 10,000 albums in his collection, many of which he has never listened to (Spirit album being one of them). But, things got a little interesting when Malofiy probed Page on this claim. Malofiy fired back, stating that Led Zeppelin covered the Spirit track ‘Fresh Garbage’ in a medley during early shows.
Why is this important? Well, ‘Fresh Garbage’ was on the exact same album as ‘Taurus’. Surely the band didn’t skip through every song on the album to listen to just one song, and how did they select this one song to cover?
Malofiy continued probing, questioning whether Led Zeppelin played the Spirit medley in the early days. But Page simply answered with “I don’t know…I don’t have a stopwatch”. Malofiy had Page in a situation where he was unable to answer questions strongly, and Malofiy continued by mentioning a 1969 show in Denver in which Led Zeppelin supported Spirit and Vanilla Fudge.
It was another inconvenient detail, though Page claimed that he wasn’t really aware Spirit were co-headlining the show. “I was excited about opening for Vanilla Fudge,” he added, “because I was a big fan of theirs”.
Malofiy laughed and claimed that Page was a fan of Spirit too. Malofiy then went on to present an old audio interview in which Page said “Spirit is a band I really love.” But, Page quickly stumbled and said that it was too long ago to remember why he would have said such a thing.
There are obviously some pieces missing to the puzzle here. Complicating matters is a judge that doesn’t think too highly of Malofiy after the attorney disregarded the rules of the trial by playing a video in court on Tuesday (June 14th) that was not previously approved to be played. The clip wasn’t on the joint list of exhibits submitted prior to the trial. Regardless, Malofiy continued to play the video, and as a result the case may lead to a mistrial.
The case continues.
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