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Dio

For a brief spell during the mid-'80s, the heavy metal quintet Dio were one of the top U.S. concert attractions, boasting one of the most over the top stage acts of its time loaded with props and special effects (lasers, explosions, a giant dragon, etc.). The group's leader was singer Ronnie James Dio, who had previously become acquainted with the metal masses as the frontman of Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow from 1975-1978 and Black Sabbath from 1979-1982. Come the early '80s, Ronnie James was ready to finally head out on his own, forming Dio and recruiting a stellar backing band, consisting of a few former bandmembers, ex-Rainbow bassist Jimmy Bain and ex-Black Sabbath drummer Vinny Appice (Carmine Appice's brother), in addition to ex-Sweet Savage guitar shredder Vivian Campbell. Lyrically, the group would retain the same subject matter that Ronnie James specialized in with his previous outfits (dungeons and dragons, swords and sorcery, damsels in distress, etc.), but musically, Dio were more melodically based than Rainbow or Sabbath. The group scored a hit right off the bat with its 1983 debut release, Holy Diver, which spawned such popular MTV videos as "Rainbow in the Dark," as well as its title track.

For their sophomore effort, 1984's The Last in Line, the band expanded its lineup to include keyboardist Claude Schnell, as the album would become the biggest hit of Dio's career (on the strength of another MTV-approved video, for the album's anthemic title track) and the group became an arena headliner. Although Dio's next release, 1985's Sacred Heart, was commercially successful, Campbell had become disillusioned by the group's direction and split from the group a year later. Just prior to Campbell's exit, the entire Dio band helped organize Hear n' Aid, an all-star assembly of heavy metal artists that recorded a track called "Stars," which helped fight world hunger (a subsequent album was issued as well, collecting previously unreleased live tracks from a few of the day's top hard rock acts). Former Giuffria guitarist Craig Goldy took Campbell's place, resulting in such releases as 1986's live EP Intermission and 1987's Dream Evil, which retained the group's headbanging audience, but failed to expand upon it as its previous releases had.

By 1990's Lock Up the Wolves, Ronnie James Dio was the only original member of Dio left in attendance as the band's lineup continued to fluctuate throughout the '90s on such releases as 1994's Strange Highways, 1996's Angry Machines, and 1998's Inferno: Last in Live (Ronnie James took a brief break from Dio in 1992 to rejoin Black Sabbath for a lone release, Dehumanizer). In 2000, a pair of Dio releases emerged; first was Dio's first new studio album in four years, the concept album Magica (which saw past members Bain and Goldy return to the group), as well as a 16-track compilation titled The Very Beast of Dio. His medieval-themed metal returned two years later, when the Killing the Dragon album arrived in the spring of 2002. The album was a serious endeavor, but Dio also learned to make fun of his image after years of defending it, inviting comedy duo Tenacious D to star in the video for "Push" and even including the clip on the fall re-release of Killing the Dragon.

In the mid-2000s Dio the man and the band returned with the studio album Master of the Moon and the live Evil or Divine, but by 2006 the band had been sidelined upon the announcement that Ronnie James would be joining Heaven & Hell, a group reuniting the singer with his late-era Sabbath brethren Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler, and Vinny Appice and named after the first Sabbath recording (released in 1980) that featured him as frontman. Heaven & Hell toured in the late 2000s and released a live (Live from Radio City Music Hall) and a studio (Devil You Know) recording, but by November of 2009 it was announced that the singer was suffering from stomach cancer, and Heaven & Hell subsequently canceled their summer 2010 touring plans. Ronnie James Dio succumbed to the disease on May 16, 2010, in Houston, TX. ~ Greg Prato, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

God Bless Ronnie yes his voice and music will last till the end of time
My dad's first concert was dio at sixteen years old he said he never partied so hard in his hole life like that night he's 47 now rip dio ronnie
The new metal is terrible - EXCEPT Stained (Not Metal) - Avenged Sevenfold
THE TWO most underrated albums of ALL time Heaven & Hell & The Mob Rules
In order Greatest Vocalists (Metal Genre) - Dickinson, Tate, Dio, Halford - Don't laugh (non metal) Steve Perry - although he lacked Dickinson & Dio's deep romps
RIP R.J.D..... I am sure you captured your rainbows on the Silver Mountain By Now. My eyes are bleeding Mr. Stargazer... . . . M i s s ya much brother!!!!
The day at the cottonbowl in DALLAS TX .Will always be in the universe as we will RONNIE LONG LIVE ROCK AND ROLL .! L4TM !!! ! 7
69 not with Bon Scott, ya dumb f**k!
Dio is much better than ozzy
Here's to you One More For The Road!
DIO!?
Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. However if you don't post this you will die in 2 days. Now you started reading this so don't stop. This is so scary. Put this on at least 5 songs in the next 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lovers name will appear on the screen in big letters this is so scary because it actually works.
msilvermerli n
HOLY DIVER LIVE! RIP R.J.D. LOVED YOU IN RAINBOW, SABBATH, AND DIO. MISS YOUR VOICE... :(
Dio is way better than that ozzy character... Dio > ozzy
Holy Diver!! \m/
I would put rjd up against any singer yes singer not screaming a hole
Nobody came close to a live show like Dio. His show was the best I have ever seen. Maiden's shows are spectacular, too. But RJD will always be the best shows in the 80's that I ever saw! \m/
Holy diver.exelen t concert.it is what we r and want 2 b.D.D.kiss my a**.rock on america..... .
What a kick a$$ song. I scream this one in my car every time. Great times
Great song from Dio
The first time I saw DiO was 1980 Oakland CA day on the green. Sabbath was doing there latest. Heaven and Hell tour it was unreal

sporack7
Unquestionab l y the most underrated singer of all-time! I would argue that his debut album with Black Sabbath is the greatest rock-n-roll album ever! I saw Dio a bunch of times but was fortunate enough to see him with Heaven and Hell about a year before he past. The passion, the admiration he had for his fans, there will never be anyone like him!
vnm_666
Rip Dio...
what do you think?
yes its awsome
Class act all the way. Rip Ronnie.
A master of metal a very distinctive heavy metal voice we will all miss you Ronnie
My absolute favorite singer to have ever walked this Earth! He is the most unique voiced man ever
Dio Rules!!!
Dio is awsome.
I mean i named mu dog after him.
RIP DIO! !We miss and luv ya. .Ur music lives on in all our hearts. .ROCK ON EVERYONE
gotta love dio, am i right?
RIP DIO! ! We miss and luv u...
markbuerck68
Seen Rainbow in 85. Unbelievable ! Long live Did!
Isn't the first time saying this, won't be the last either... R.i.P. RJD
Amazing artist, miss him all the time.
I love him and not just for his voice, but as a person.
He'll never be forgotten
Dam I miss Ronnie D
All hail dark Lord Dio
U rock Dio!

RIP dude \m/
R I p dio
I seen all the best bands of the 80's a great time indeed ., when rock was on top ., this new s**ts trash
Greg Prato,
He died in LA, not Houston! Somehow you received the wrong info.
just because you say you say you can sing and play guitar doesn't mean you can. Plus, you're such a momas boy.
kingsmash1
R.I.P
Tenacious D ^
Dio, can you hear me? I am lost and so alone. I'm asking for your guidance, won't you come down from your throne? I need a tight compadre, who will teach me how to rock! My father thinks you're evil, but man he can suck a c**k! Rock is not the devils work, it's magical and rad!!
Vinnie Appice is all you need to know
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