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The Latest: Testimony begins in Led Zeppelin 'Stairway' suit

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – The Latest on a copyright lawsuit over Led Zeppelin’s song “Stairway to Heaven” (all times local):

1:40 p.m.

A rock musician testifying in a copyright infringement case against Led Zeppelin says he spent time with singer Robert Plant and that a guitar riff from “Stairway to Heaven” sounds identical to one used earlier by his band.

Mark Andes took the stand Wednesday in Los Angeles federal court. A trustee for another member of his group Spirit is suing Led Zeppelin over the famous guitar intro to “Stairway.” The suit claims the riff was lifted from Spirit’s song “Taurus.”

Parts from both songs were played in court, and Andes said they sounded the same. Musical experts not involved with the trial have said the descending chord sequence is common.

Andes testified that his band played “Taurus” at a show in 1968 where Led Zeppelin was the opening act. He also said he drank beer with Plant in England in 1970.

A lawyer for the singer and guitarist Jimmy Page has said they didn’t hear “Taurus” until decades after it was recorded.