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Folk singer sues Led Zeppelin

on June 30, 2010, 11:40am

What’s not new: Led Zeppelin “borrowed” plenty of material for some of its classic songs. “Bring it on Home” was taken from a Sonny Boy Williamson recording; “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” was written by Berkeley folk singer Anne Bredon. And “Dazed and Confused” was adapted from the original song by San Francisco songwriter Jake Holmes. This is all common knowledge by now.

What is new: 41 years after Jimmy Page credited himself with the song on 1969’s Led Zeppelin, Holmes is finally taking legal action against the guitarist, according to TMZ. Of course, thanks to a little thing called a statute of limitations, Holmes can’t sue for damages from any infringement beyond three years ago, but any royalties Page (or Super Hype Publishing, Atlantic Recording Corporation, or Rhino Entertainment Company) has collected during those last three years are fair game.

Holmes, whose other credits include jingles like the Gillette “Best a Man Can Get” commercials, is asking for $150,000 per infringement, plus court fees. It’s hard to imagine why he wouldn’t win this suit, but if you’re curious, compare the tracks below and read the text of the suit in this PDF. Hopefully, this doesn’t mean any setbacks to Page’s new material.