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The Ronnie James Dio Story 5 Dio   

Go to Dutch   Tour dates   Dio Disciples   Last in Line

Here we go into 1982 with the last part of the Ronnie James Dio Story, about his own band "Dio".

After his departure from Black Sabbath with plans to form a new band with fellow and former Black Sabbath member, drummer Vinny Appice . Dio's name was chosen because it was logical from a commercial point of view, because the name was already known at that time.

The band released ten studio albums and had numerous lineup changes over the years with Ronnie James Dio as the sole constant member. The guitarists were through the years, Craig Goldy (latest guitar), Doug Aldrich, Vivian CampbellTracy GJake E. Lee and Rowan Robertson.

The hand gesture on the photo of Ronnie James Dio called the "maloikand is the evil eye, and is used by every metal band. It was launched into the metal culture by Ronnie James Dio himself, which traditionally is a curse, or is used to ward off a curse.

The origins of the band and Holy Diver (1982-1983)

In 1982, with disagreements about the mixing of Black Sabbath's Live Evil resulted in the departure of Ronnie James Dio and Vinny Appice  from Black Sabbath. They wanted to continue together as a band. The two formed Dio in October 1982 in the United States with Vivian Campbell (guitar) and Jimmy Bain (bass). The following May, the band released their debut album, Holy Diver. It featured two hit singles, "Rainbow in the Dark" and "Holy Diver", which gained popularity through MTV. Ronnie James Dio and Jimmy Bain played keyboards in the studio, but they hired keyboardist Claude Schnell for the live shows in 1983 before the Holy Diver tour. Claude Schnell played at the side of the stage on the first two tours before he came forward in 1985. Dio had the following to say about the origin of the band:

It was a good time that the band formation. It was perfect for us. Everything just fell into place. Ethics in rehearsal were great. The effort in the shot was just as good. Everyone wanted it would be great. We believed in what we were doing and could not wait to bring that product and for the people to hear it.

The Last in Line and Dream Evil (1984-1989)

The band was now a quintet with Schnell on keyboards, the band released their second studio album, The Last in Line, on 2 July 1984. It was followed by their third album, Sacred Heart, which was released on August 15, 1985.

In 1985, Ronnie James Dio, Vivian Campbell and Jimmy Bain also wrote the song "STARS" for the Hear 'n Aid  project (for Band Aid) with many other heavy metal greats of that time. (Or click Hear N' Aid - Stars for the complete version of 47.04 minutes), Cooperation with Vivian Campbell did not go well, and the gap resulted in Campbell was fired. Campbell was then invited to participate in Whitesnake. A few songs were recorded live during The Secred Heart tour for the 1986 EP Intermission  with Campbell still on guitar, but the EP also contained the studio track "Time To Burn", which served in 1987 for the fans to introduce Craig Goldy  as the new guitarist.

On July 21, 1987 they released their fourth album Dream Evil . After Dream Evil, Craig Goldy pursued a solo career, and left the band. In June 1989 the 18 year old Rowan Robertson  was announced as Goldy's successor, but there were further changes with Schnell, Bain, and Appice leaving the band.   

Changes (1990-1999)

Schnell, Bain, and Appice were replaced respectively by Jens Johansson, Teddy Cook and former AC/DC drummer Simon Wright . The new band released the album Lock Up the Wolves, in the spring of 1990. During the tour, Ronnie James Dio had a chance meeting with former Black Sabbath bandmate Geezer Butler , which led to a brief reunion of the band, and produced an album, Dehumanizer . After this period, Ronnie James Dio started, Dio again, retaining only Appice on the drums. In early 1993 guitarist Tracy G, keyboardist Scott Warren of Warrant and bassist Jeff Pilson of Dokken joined to the band. During this era, the band left the fantasy theme behind, to focus more on contemporary issues, with the result that some fans, albums as Strange Highways from 1993, and Angry Machines from 1996 and the live album Inferno: Last in Live consider as the worst Dio has ever made, while others viewed positively as a step away from outdated sound of the eighties. With a disappointing record sales for Angry Machines, the management wanted the band to return to their former style after the departure of Tracy G, it was announced that he´ll be replaced by the returning Craig Goldy.

Comeback (2000-2004)

Craig Goldy's return, facilitated the release of Dio's eighth studio album in 2000, Magica, which is widely regarded as the band 'comeback album "and reached number 13 on the Billboard  independent charts. It featured the return not only of Craig Goldy but of Simon Wright and Jimmy Bain as well, although, on the European tour Chuck Garric played bass. The concept album, Magica had a return to the band parent more successful sound, while increased use of keyboards, gave modern look. During the next tour, there were tensions between Goldy on the one hand and Jimmy Bain and Ronnie James Dio on the other hand, because of which Craig Goldy liabilities was related to his family. Goldy left the band in January 2002 and was replaced by Doug Aldrich, whom Bain had met, while recording a tribute album for Metallica. Because of his late arrival, Aldrich did not a lot for the ninth work of Dio, Killing the Dragon, which was mainly written by Ronnie James Dio and Jimmy Bain. Killing the Dragon was released in 2002 through Spitfire Records and was well received in the metal community, which made it to the Billboard top 200. Aldrich would stay in the band until April of the following year, when he, like Campbell before him, joined Whitesnake.

Master of the Moon, Heaven and Hell and the end of the band (2004-2010)  

Master of the Moon

Dio released their tenth studio album, Master of the Moon on August 30, 2004 in Europe through SPV Records, and on September 7, 2004 in the United States through Sanctuary Records. The album features multi-instrumentalist Jeff Pilson (formerly of Dokken) on bass, however, due to previous obligations with Foreigner, he was only available for the recording sessions, and so was replaced by Rudy Sarzo (formerly of Ozzy OsbourneQuiet Riot, WhitesnakeBlue Öyster Cult) during the tour.

2005 saw the release of Dio live album Evil or Divine – Live in New York City , which was the same show and was released on DVD in 2003. Dio toured  Zuid AmericaJapanEuropa en Rusland  In 2005 was their autumn tour entitled "an Evening with Dio" and featured a regular set, and then a second set of the band that played Holy Diver entirely. A DVD of the tour was filmed in London. The sound of this performance, a double CD named Holy Diver – Live was released in April 2006.

Ronnie James Dio's involvement with Heaven & Hell delayed the recording of the follow-up Master of the Moon, Magica II. The three year hiatus was briefly interrupted for 10 performances depicting European mini-tour, from May to June 2008, and was scheduled to be interrupted again from November to December 2009 with 22 concerts starting in the UK and ending in Germany. Doug Aldrich had to fill in for Craig Goldy on guitar on this data, who had other commitments. Dio wanted to release a new single, titled "Electra", to make it coincide with the tour. This would be their first studio material in 5 years. The band also wanted to record an album or two in 2010.   

Go to the second part of the story

Stu(dio) albums   

Holy Diver (1983)

The Last in Line (1984)

Sacred Heart (1985)

Dream Evil (1987)

Lock Up the Wolves (1990)

Strange Highways (1993)

Angry Machines (1996)

Magica (2000)

Killing the Dragon (2002)

Master of the Moon (2004)

Go to complete discography   


Album with Heaven and Hell   

The Devil You Know  (2009) 


Live in Concert (1984)

A Special from the Spectrum (1984)

Sacred Heart "The Video" (1986 – 2004)

Time Machine (1990)

Evil or Divine: Live in New York City (2003)

We Rock (2005)

Holy Diver: Live (2006)

Finding The Sacred Heart: Live In Philly 1986 (2013)

Live in London: Hammersmith Apollo 1993 (2014)

Other Languages   

Go to Dio Dutch  Go to Heaven and Hell English Dutch

Play all   

 Don´t Talk To Strangers    


Rainbow In The Dark   

The Last In Line   


Egypt (The Chains Are On)   

Sacred Heart   

Rock n´Roll Children   

Hungry For Heaven   

All The Fools Sailed Away   


I Could Have Been A Dreamer   

Between Two Hearts   

My Eyes   

This Is Your Live (the memorial video)   

Push! (feat. Tenacious D)   

Jorn - Song For Ronnie James   

Doro - Hero (song for Ronnie James Dio)   

Loudness - The Voice Of Metal   

Heaven and Hell, his last  performance  9 months before he died.      

Ronnie together with Yngwie Malmsteen - Dream On

Ronnie James Dio - Very Sad Video R.I.P.   

Ronnie James Dio´s Heavy Metal Funeral   

Wild One   

This Is Your Live (Tribute album)


Magic - A Tribute To Ronnie James Dio   (full album)   

Dio Live At Vredeburg 1983 (full concert)   

Dio Live Super Rock 1985 (full concert)   

Dio Evil Or Divine 2003 (full concert)

Dio Live Russia 2005 (full concert) 

40 videos, High Voltage festival 

    Interview with Ronnie James Dio

interview on religion and the Devil 2004