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Ronnie James Dio

Ronnie James Dio

Ronnie James Dio

Ronnie James Dio is one of heavy metal’s most legendary lead vocalists, and undoubtedly its most well-traveled, having fronted no less than three classic bands, including the one that took his last name. Ronald James Padavona was born to sing on July 10, 1942, and his amazing trajectory took him from late ‘50s doo woo groups, through ‘60s British Invasion and psychedelia, until detouring into the boogie-woogie-driven classic rock of his early ‘70s rock band, Elf. But Dio’s big break arrived in 1975, when he was hired to front Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow for a trio of seminal studio LPs. He then replaced Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath for a pair of equally lauded efforts. Come 1983, Ronnie was finally prepared to strike out on his own with Dio, and the band he recruited, featuring guitarist Vivian Campbell, bassist Jimmy Bain, drummer Vinnie Appice and keyboardist Claude Schnell, soon became a top concert draw, thanks to stellar albums like ‘Holy Diver’ and ‘The Last in Line.’ Dio’s popularity began to wane towards the end of decade, as a succession of lead guitarists (Craig Goldy, Rowan Robertson) passed through the group’s ranks, and Ronnie eventually put the band on ice for a couple of years to rejoin Black Sabbath for the ‘Dehumanizer’ album and tour. But this reunion, too, proved short-lived and typically acrimonious, so by 1993 Dio — the band — had been revived with the help of guitarist Tracy G, former Dokken bassist Jeff Pilson and the ever-dependable Appice. Over the ensuing decade, the group would record and tour in support of five well-received studio albums (weathering the occasional musician change up along the way), until Ronnie was lured back into the Sabbath fold yet again, this time under the Heaven & Hell moniker. After hitting the road to the delight of longtime fans, Heaven & Hell recorded three new songs for 2007’s ‘Black Sabbath: The Dio Years’ compilation, and then topped that with a complete album of new material in 2009’s ‘The Devil You Know.’ Tragically, Ronnie James Dio was diagnosed with stomach cancer later that same year, and would eventually pass away on May 16, 2010 — but not before leaving behind one of the most impressive legacies in heavy metal history.

   
Eddie Trunk Wendy Dio Tom Morello Tenacious D
Chad Childers, Loudwire

Ronnie James Dio Memorial Weekend Raises $155K for Cancer Research

The recent Ronnie James Dio memorial weekend events generated $155,000 in funds for cancer research and education.

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Category: Metal, News Tags:
dio holy diver featured

32 Years Ago: Dio Release ‘Holy Diver’

If Ronnie James Dio hadn’t been kicked out of Black Sabbath, one of the hallmarks of metal, 'Holy Diver,' might never have surfaced from the depths.

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Dean Schachtel
Chad Childers, Loudwire

Dean Schachtel, Niji Entertainment GM, Dies at 49

Dean Schachtel, the GM of Niji Entertainment and a Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund board member, has passed away at the age of 49.

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Lita Ford Dio Disciples Eddie Money
Chad Childers, Loudwire

Lita Ford, Dio Disciples, Eddie Money + More Play Ride for Ronnie James Dio Concert

Lita Ford, Dio Disciples and Eddie Money were among those on hand to perform at the Ride for Ronnie bike rally and barbecue honoring Ronnie James Dio.

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Ronnie James Dio portrait
Chad Childers, Loudwire

Ronnie James Dio’s Life and Music Celebrated at Los Angeles Memorial Service

Many of Ronnie James Dio's peers and loved ones gathered to celebrate his memory at a memorial service Saturday at Forest Lawn Cemetery.

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Eddie Trunk Wendy Dio Tom Morello Tenacious D
Chad Childers, Loudwire

Rockers Roll and Remember at Ronnie James Dio Bowling Fundraiser

Tom Morello, Tenacious D and a host of rock and metal vets turned out to bowl a few frames for a Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout fundraiser.

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Ronnie James Dio
Robert Cianflone, Getty Images

5 Years Ago: Ronnie James Dio Passes Away

We take a look back at the life and death of metal legend Ronnie James Dio.

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Remembering Ronnie James Dio
Loudwire

Remembering Ronnie James Dio – Musicians Pay Tribute to Metal Legend

To commemorate the incomparable career of Ronnie James Dio, we rounded up some of rock and metal's greatest musicians to speak about the late legend.

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Remembering Dio Sully Erna
Loudwire

Remembering Dio: Sully Erna Talks Opening for Dio Before Godsmack Had a Record Deal

Sully found inspiration in Ronnie's gigantic voice, which the Godsmack mainman credits with paving the way for future metal singers.

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Remembering Dio Korn
LoudwireMusic

Remembering Dio: Korn’s Munky Praises Ronnie as a Godlike Performer

Munky found Ronnie to be godlike onstage, and to this day, Ronnie is still the greatest heavy metal singer of all time, according to Munky.

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