Led Zeppelin - Stairway to Heaven - Meaning of the song
Robert Plant recalled writing the lyrics in a flash of inspiration:
"I was holding a pencil and paper, and for some reason I was in a very bad mood. Then all of a sudden my hand was writing out the words, 'There's a lady who's sure all that glitters is gold/And she's buying a stairway to heaven.' I just sat there and looked at the words and then I almost leapt out of my seat."
Robert Plant spent much of the '70s answering questions about the lyrics he wrote for "Stairway." When asked why the song was so popular, he said it could be its "abstraction," adding, "Depending on what day it is, I still interpret the song a different way - and I wrote the lyrics." The lyrics take some pretty wild turns, but the beginning of the song is about a woman who accumulates money, only to find out the hard way her life had no meaning and will not get her into heaven. This is the only part Plant would really explain, as he said it was "a woman getting everything she wanted without giving anything back."
The most famous rock song of all time, "Stairway To Heaven" wasn't a chart hit because it was never released as a single to the general public. Radio stations received promotional singles which quickly became collector's items.
On Tuesday November 13, 2007, Led Zeppelin's entire back catalogue was made available as legal digital downloads, making all of their tracks eligible for the UK singles chart. As a result, at the end of that week the original version of "Stairway To Heaven" arrived in the UK singles charts for the first time.
Stairway to Heaven - Lyrics
There's a lady who's sure all that glitters is gold And she's buying a stairway to Heaven When she gets there she knows, if the stores are all closed With a word she can get what she came for Ooh, ooh, and she's buying a stairway to Heaven There's a sign on the wall, but she wants to be sure 'Cause you know sometimes words have two meanings In a tree by the brook, there's a songbird who sings Sometimes all of our thoughts are misgiven Ooh, makes me wonder Ooh, makes me wonder There's a feeling I get when I look to the west And my spirit is crying for leaving In my thoughts I have seen rings of smoke through the trees And the voices of those who stand looking Ooh, it makes me wonder Ooh, really makes me wonder And it's whispered that soon if we all call the tune Then the piper will lead us to reason And a new day will dawn for those who stand long And the forests will echo with laughter Oh-oh-oh-oh-whoa If there's a bustle in your hedgerow, don't be alarmed, now It's just a spring clean for the May queen Yes, there are two paths you can go by, but in the long run There's still time to change the road you're on And it makes me wonder Oh, whoa Your head is humming and it won't go, in case you don't know The piper's calling you to join him Dear lady, can you hear the wind blow? And did you know Your stairway lies on the whispering wind? And as we wind on down the road Our shadows taller than our soul There walks a lady we all know Who shines white light and wants to show How everything still turns to gold And if you listen very hard The tune will come to you at last When all are one and one is all To be a rock and not to roll And she's buying a stairway to Heaven