Two years ago today 05-16-2010 we lost one of the best voices in music. I say music because his voice transcended the genre of heavy metal even though that proved to be his high point.
I am speaking of course of Ronald James Padavona AKA Ronnie James Dio. He started his band Dio in 1982, the same year I started working here. However he started singing and performing a long time before that.
Yes there was his great work with Richie Blackmore’s Rainbow and Elf and Black Sabbath and others but even before all that, his awesome voice gave life to songs our parents grew up on.
In the late ‘50’s early ‘60’s Ronnie sang in bands like The Vegas Kings, Ronnie and The Redcaps. The later becoming Ronnie Dio and The Prophets when Ron adopted the “Dio” after mafia man Johnny Dio.
Sadly Ronnie died of stomach cancer shortly after a strong outing with Heaven and Hell which was essentially Black Sabbath. Ronnie was a gentleman and a gentle man. His kind endearing nature and warm openness drew you into him and made you comfortable immediately upon meeting him. I will always be grateful for being in his presence on and off the air as well as his community activeness with projects like Hear ‘n Aid and Children of the Night.
Thankfully the music lives forever. Please enjoy a selection of tunes spanning his career below and visit his site and make a contribution to the Stand Up and Shout Cancer fund which was started by his wife Wendy. We love you Wendy and miss you Ronnie. Horns Up! Watch Ronnie James Dio - Push f/Tenacious D here.