Carmine Appice Compares Led Zeppelin’s Copyright Lawsuit To Ozzy Osbourne’s
Rock music history is full of rip-offs, legal conflicts, and dramas. Led Zeppelin was accused of ripping off their famous hit ‘Stairway To Heaven,’ while Ozzy Osbourne got into legal trouble with his former bandmates for his debut solo album ‘Blizzard Of Ozz.’ In a recent interview with Misplaced Straws, Carmine Appice made a comparison between the two legal battles.
“That was all baloney,” said Carmine Appice about the ‘Stairway To Heaven’ lawsuit. “Those chords are a stock set of chords. There’s not anything amazing about the chords. The melody on top, the lyrics, and the way they arranged it really made the song happen. So it’s just, I guess, some guys trying to make some money because maybe they’re hurting.”
He continued, “Randy California died. Who else is in the band? Randy’s father died. The surviving members probably didn’t go on to do anything, so they thought, ‘Well, maybe we could sue Led Zeppelin?’ Other lawsuits meant more, like when Ozzy Osbourne got sued by Bob Daisley and Lee Kerslake for the first Ozzy solo album ‘Blizzard Of Ozz.’ That was legitimate. And they lost when they shouldn’t have lost.”
Led Zeppelin was sued by Spirit’s Randy Wolfe, who claimed ‘Stairway To Heaven’ was a rip-off of their song, ‘Taurus.’ However, the jury stood by Zeppelin’s side. Even though the songs’ similarities were pointed out, it was concluded that the track was inspired by a tragic incident that had impacted Rober Plant and was not a rip-off.
On the other hand, Ozzy Osbourne’s former bandmates Bob Daisley and Lee Kerslake sued him for unpaid royalties in the early 2000s, but their lawsuit was dismissed. According to Carmine Appice, the lawsuit against Osbourne made more sense and shouldn’t have been dismissed, but Spirit had clearly sued Zeppelin for money.