Ronnie James Dio

A Tribute to Ronnie James Dio
10 July 1942 - 16 May 2010

In Memorian   -   In Memorian pt 2   -   Geezer Butler   -   Memorial Serice News   -   Memorial Service   -   Public Memorial   -   Memorial Program

Memorial Service Photos   -   Photos Pt 2   -   Photos Pt 3   -   Catclub Tribute   -   Fanclan Tribute   -   Rata Blanca Tribute   -   Other Tributes

Public Memorial Highlights
Forest Lawn grounds, Los Angeles, CA - May 30th, 2010

2:10 pm: Single spotlight appears as keyboardist; Scott Warren (Heaven and Hell, Dio) plays the instrumental to "This Is Your Life", written by Ronnie James Dio The original track appeared Dio's Angry Machines (1996).

Opening remarks by host, Eddie Trunk (host of That Metal Show at VH1 Classic), "(We are here today to) pay tribute to a Legend, Icon, and One Hell of a Singer" Then he encouraged the audience, inside and outside the Forest Lawn grounds (Los Angeles, CA), to celebrate him Rock'n'Roll style.

-The first chants of DIO, DIO are heard.

First Songs performed: From Butterfly Ball, a concept album by bassist, producer Roger Glover, (Deep Purple, Solo, Rainbow, and Deep Purple(again) since 1984)

  • "Sitting In a Dream"
  • "Homeward"
  • Key musicians on this track: Claude Schnell (Dio) and Oni Logan (Lynch Mob).

  • Early photos of Dio are shown.
  • Trunk: mentions Dio's early musical beginnings From the playing of the trumpet, at the age of 7, to which Eddie explained, "Dio felt in knowing that instrument, (it) helped his breathing technique when he was singing"

  • Then stills of the following bands: The Vegas Kings, Ronnie & the Red Caps, and Ronnie Dio &s; The Prophets, were shown on the large video screen on stage and on the JumboTrons and smaller small screen televisions, stationed outside the Hall Of Liberty grounds Ronnie was a part of these bands growing up in the mid '50s and well into the early '60s, in and around the New York area.
  • Speaker: Harold Hide, Ronnie's childhood friend.

  • Memorable Remarks: Harold told the audience of a surprise birthday party that was held for Ronnie last July in NY, which of course Ronnie enjoyed very much He also made mention of RJD having to miss his 50th class reunion in Cortland, NY later this year At the end of his speech, Harold put his head down and then made the signature 'devil horns' salute (\m/) to the audience as the crowd cheered.
  • - More chants of DIO, DIO are heard.

    He then apologized to Wendy (Ronnie wife and longtime manager), before bringing up to the podium, 'The Biggest Dio Fan", he called him, his son Greg.

    Then he and his son left the stage together.

    Trunk: Introduces Dan Padavona, Ronnie's son, to the stage.

    Speaker: Dan Padavona, RJD's son.

  • Memorable Remarks: Well, (at least) I got my Dad's height" (laughter from the crowd as this almost completely bald man was standing at the podium)…"(There's a) hole in my heart, one I know I cannot fill ", and later, "For Dad, the show had to go on"…The cancer grew into a monster, even Dio couldn't slay."… "You know what the worse (thing a) doctor can say? You could have come sooner."
  • Final Remark by Dan: "Dad, I Love You", as he looked up to the sky and made the signature 'devil horns' salute (\m/).

    Trunk: Introduction of ELF.

  • Live video clips and pictures (stills) of the band are shown on the large screen.
  • Speaker: David "Rock" Feinstein (RODS - guitarist), RJD's cousin, and early band mate in The Electric Elves and ELF.
  • Memorable Remarks: "In order to be in the band, the first step was to be 5' 4" or under (laughs heard from the audience)….Fans (to Ronnie) "(were to him) one of THE most important (in his life)" He also recounted a story in which he was backstage and it smelled like eucalyptus and a humidifier was in the room Dio was not feeling well at the time Dio turned to his cousin and said, "I would NEVER disappoint the fans, unless I had to." Dio promptly went on to perform later that night.
  • Final Remark by Rock: "(Dio) left us with a wealth of music and words".. "Listen to his music, listen to his words because it was magic It was his life, his whole life."

    Trunk: Introduction of RAINBOW.

    Trunk briefly mentions that he hails from the state of New Jersey and that the first ever Rainbow album that he had bought was entitled, Difficult To Cure Although he liked what he heard, he then discovered, a totally different Rainbow, as he started to collect the back catalogue of the band's recordings He then picked up an album entitled Rising, thereupon he heard a song called 'Stargazer'.

    See the fan's clip here of Trunk's Rainbow introduction:

  • Video clip of "Gates of Babylon".
  • ุ Video clip and stills shown during the playing of "Long Live Rock'n'Roll"
  • Video clip of Man On A Silver Mountain - Live".
  • Before handing the microphone over again to the next speaker, Trunk mentions the late Cozy Powell.

    Speaker: Neil Warnock, Overseas Booking Agent For Dio.

    Memorable Remarks: "Connection to the audience was genuine"... (You always got from his performances) value for the money".. "(He was a) consummate professional"...

    Final Remark by Neil: "Cheers for (his) life, talent, and friendship."

    Songs performed:

  • "Catch The Rainbow"
  • "Rainbow Eyes" - Before playing it, guitarist Stuart Smith, mentions that this song was written by Ronnie, especially for Wendy Dio.
  • Key musicians on these tracks: Stuart Smith (g)(Heaven and Earth, Sweet), Scott Warren (k), Dyna Shirasaki (bv)(Thunderstruck), Rudy Sarzo (b)(Quiet Riot, Ozzy Osbourne, Whitesnake, Dio).

    Trunk: I have been handed note here from Councilmember Paul Koretz, whose a Los Angeles councilmember...

    "I would like to adjourn in memory of Ronnie James Dio Born Ronald James Padavona, in Portsmouth New Hampshire in 1942 He had an amazing career in music, marked by tremendous success with heavy metal bands ELF, RAINBOW, BLACK SABBATH, and DIO He began his career playing with rockabilly bands in the late 1950s, and gained wide exposure in 1972 while his band, ELF, was the opening act for DEEP PURPLE In 1979, he replaced Ozzy Osbourne as the front man of BLACK SABBATH He toured with BLACK SABBATH until 1982, and by then he had formed his own group, DIO

    "Ronnie's charisma on stage was complemented by his compassion offstage As an organizer for the non-profit organization, Children of the Night, he was dedicated to the cause of assisting children who were forcefully subjected to prostitute themselves on the streets Since 1979, this organization has provided victims of forced prostitution with intervention and counseling, as well as a roof over their heads and a place to sleep.
    [Cheers from the audience]

    Trunk: And last, but certainly the best part in all this, Councilman Paul Koretz
    has proclaimed, May 30th, Today, Ronnie James Dio Day in Los Angeles.

    Chants of DIO, DIO are heard.

    Trunk: Introduction of BLACK SABBATH.

    Eddie recalls a story when he was at the boardwalk in New Jersey one afternoon; as he picked out this one particular album, just to "piss off his parents" That album, he remembered, had some "angels smoking cigarettes" on the cover.

  • Video clip of Ronnie talking about his signature 'devil horn' salute "Did I invent it? No But I perfected it, by doing it".
  • Video Clips of "Heaven & Hell" and "Neon Nights".
  • Speaker: Nick Jackson, Pyrotechnics guy, Hammersmith Odeon.

    Memorable Remarks: Nick recounts Ronnie's reaction to the "Hammersmith Odeon incident" which apparently blew a hole in the stage and caused Nick to be picked up and interrogated by police for hours before being brought back to the venue Upon his eventual return to the venue, the first person he encounters was Ronnie.

    RJD's reaction: "Brilliant! The press has been calling us for hours.".....

    Final Remark by Nick: "(Ronnie had a) Huge heart and a wicked sense of humor"

    Speaker: Willie Fyffe, Dio's Personal Assistant on the road.

    Memorable Remarks: I called him "Gov", short for the "Governor" Then he proceeded to tell the audience, an example of Ronnie's humor ...Beginning at the 3:52 mark of this video..

    Final Remark by Willie: "He'll Always Be My Man On The Silver Mountain."

    Songs performed:

  • "Heaven And Hell" (Acoustic version) performed by John Payne (Asia).
  • Trunk: Introduction of DIO (the Band)

    Trunk talks about the "Evolution of Dio" - The Band And emphasizes to the audience below, even though the band graced his name, it was always a band He then mentions the band's first album, Holy Diver (1983) "Dio, Trunk added, was truly a BAND and always kept a level of class."

  • Stills of the band with Jimmy Bain, Vinny Appice, and Vivian Campbell.
  • Video clips of "Rainbow In The Dark (live), "Holy Diver", and "We Rock".
  • Speaker: Craig Goldy (Dio)

    Memorable Remarks: "The first and last of his own kind.. I'm just like you, I'm a fan of Ronnie James Dio" Then he quoted Horace Mann - "Be ashamed to die, until you have won a victory for (mankind)."

    Final Remark by Craig: "I thank you for sharing the honor he deserves."

    Trunk: mentions the importance of the stage production in the Dio shows from the Dragons to the laser shows Continuing the 'Evolution of Dio", he noted that Dio won countless awards for his stage productions.

  • Video clip of "King Of Rock'n' Roll" and "Sacred Heart".
  • Trunk: Before Belladonna performs, Trunk recalls the story of how Belladonna calls the host at his home and instead of leaving a voice message; a singing message was left instead Belladonna, on the other line, was performing the beginning lyrics to 'Man On A Silver Mountain' Eddie then told the audience, he knew who it was by virtue of his caller ID.

    Song Performed (3:58 pm):
  • "Man On A Silver Mountain" (Acoustic version) - Joey Belladonna (Anthrax, Belladonna)
  • Trunk: talks briefly about the DIO Lock Up The Wolves (1990-91) period.

    Speaker: Simon Wright Drummer for AC/DC and Dio.

  • Video clip of "Angel" - showing Ronnie in the studio recording this track.
  • Memorable Remark: WRonnie asked him (after he was diagnosed with cancer in Nov 2009), "I'm going to need your help, Simon."...Later, Simon recalled that" We tried to be positive and encourage him (that everything was going) to be ok.".. "Wendy (is a) tower of strength."

    Final Remark by Simon: ..."caring, generous, smartest man I know."

    Trunk: briefly mentions to the audience of the Castle in Birmingham (UK) as being the birthplace of "Heavy Metal" He then he introduces "Big Scott" to the stage.

    Speaker: "Big Scott"or "Turbo", as he was also known Part of the Dio crew member/roadie staff for 14 years.

    Memorable Moment: Instead of taking the podium like all the other speakers, Big Scott takes one of the microphones from the location where the other performers had stood and then goes directly in front of the casket carrying RJD and then spoke to the audience.

    Memorable Remarks: We were "Ronnie's Boys" "(We were) never behind or beneath him, (but) always near his side."..."We were rewarded every night by a Dio show."

    Final Remark by Big Scott: "Your heart has a huge hole in it, but the memories remain."

    Song performed:
  • 'In My Life', by The Beatles Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney Performed by Paul Shortino (Rough Cutt, Quiet Riot) Shortino before going into the song, remarked as his voice was breaking (prior to his performance), "He's (meaning Dio) a hard person not to love."
  • Final Lyric sung (with emphasis): "In My Life, I've Loved You More."

    Trunk: comments that Dio was "Way beyond his music with his Generosity and Kindness One of the themes in the "Evolution of Dio" was his association with Deep Purple, for whom ELF was the support act.

  • Video clip of Deep Purple with the London Symphony Orchestra and guest vocalist, Ronnie James Dio in 2007.
  • The clip shown at the memorial began at the 1:49 mark.

    Then Eddie read a statement from Roger Glover which said:

    "To say the news hit me hard would be an understatement I am devastated that such a force of nature that Ronnie was could be felled by such an insidious disease Destiny brought him into my life at a point where ELF was reaching a higher level and I was in need of him; his talent and wit fortified me through a very difficult time His was the strength that sustained me whilst writing and recording The Butterfly Ball and I will be forever in his debt that he served me so well."
    Trunk: then told the story of when he asked Ronnie, "Who is YOUR favorite vocalist?" Without hesitation, Dio said his favorite vocalist was Glenn Hughes (Trapeze, Deep Purple, Hughes/Thrall, Hughes Turner Project, Solo, Black Country Communion)

    Glenn is introduced on stage.

    Memorable Remark: Before Glenn sang the track, he described Ronnie as the "nicest, kindest, soul brother, we ever had"

    Song performed:
  • "Coast To Coast" by Trapeze (from the LP, You Are The Music... We're Just The Band, 1972).
  • Final Lyric sung: (Glenn had added the following lyric), "I'll remember you, Will you remember me in heaven?"

    Trunk: Introduction of HEAVEN AND HELL.
  • Video clip of H&H's Radio City Music Hall performance from 2007 playing the songs 'Mob Rules' and 'Heaven And Hell'.
  • Memorable Moment:The audience inside the Hall of Liberty joined in singing the latter track during the audience participation portion of the song.

    Trunk: tells the audience of the 'Timeless, Ageless Brilliance Of Ronnie James Dio" just before he introduces Scott Warren.

    Speaker: Scott Warren, longtime Dio and Heaven and Hell keyboardist.

    Memorable Remarks: Quoting from the song, "This Is Your Life", Scott mentions to the audience that the subtitle for this song should now be, 'The Voice Is Gone'…"Goodbye, I will deeply miss you my dear friend, Ronnie James Dio" "Sing a new song (called) Heaven."

    Final Remark: "Rest In Peace, Rock In Peace."

    Trunk: reads a statement from actor Jack Black (this statement was in the Memorial Program given out to all the well wishers in attendance).
  • Video Clip from Jack Black's movie Tenacious D - The Pick Of Destiny (2006) is shown In it, Dio makes a brief cameo appearance, singing to the character of 'Lil JB (a young Jack Black look alike).

    'Lil JB: [singing to the poster] 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 cock / Rock is not the Devil's work, it's magical and rad / I'll never rock as long as I am stuck here with my dad

    [the poster comes to life]

    Ronnie James Dio: [singing] I hear you brave young Jables, you are hungry for the rock / But to learn the ancient methods, secret doors you must unlock / Escape your father's clutches in this oppressive neighborhood / On a journey you must go to find the land of Hollywood / In the City of Fallen Angels, where the ocean meets the sand / You will form a strong alliance and the world's most awesome band / To find your fame and fortune, through the valley you must walk / You will face your inner demons, now go my son and ROCK!

    [JB jumps out the window and runs away from home]
    Source: ฉ 2006 IMDB.
  • Trunk: introduces as one of the other themes of the "Evolution Of Dio" was the love Dio had for his musician peers.

  • Video clip of Lemmy (Motorhead) clowning around as Dio and him talk a little about the We Wish You A Metal Xmas And Headbanging New Year (2008) release the two (as well as a host of other artists performing Christmas songs) Both Lemmy and Dio lent their vocals to a track on the CD.
  • ุ Video clip of Lemmy and two of his current band mates in Motorhead saying their final goodbyes to Ronnie.
  • Trunk: Introduces to the stage Geoff Tate (Queensryche).

    Song Performed:

  • "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen.
  • Other key musicians on that track were Scott Warren (k), Stuart Smith (g), and Dyna Shirasaki (bv).

    Trunk: mentions Dio's Charitable work over the years beginning with The Children Of The Night Foundation

    Speaker: Dr Lois Lee , President and Director of the Children Of the Night Foundation is introduced.

  • "The goal", Ms Lee remarks, "of this non-profit organization is in rescuing children from the ravages of street prostitution.".. "The organization, she tells the audience, "is currently celebrating its 30th year anniversary Ronnie James Dio and his wife Wendy have been a part of the organizational efforts of this foundation for the past 25 years".
  • Memorable remark: "I owe my successes to them."

    Trunk: "after the "USA For Africa - We Are The World" video came out in 1985, one glaring thing that was missing from this video was the lack of musicians from the hard rock, heavy metal genre".

  • Video clip of Dio talking about his involvement in HEAR 'N' AID, mentioning that along with band members, Jimmy Bain (Rainbow, Dio) and Vivian Campbell (Dio, Def Leppard) and with the help and radio station KLOS in Los Angeles, HEAR 'N' AID was formed and the subsequent song, 'We're Stars' was recorded and released.
    Dio is quoted as saying; this was a "Vehicle To Help Another Human Being."

  • Trunk: introduces Dr Sandeep Kapoor to the stage.

    Speaker: Dr Sandeep Kapoor, Ronnie's personal physician who recommended to Wendy and Ronnie, the MD Anderson Cancer Institute in Houston, Texas for Ronnie's cancer and chemo treatment.

    Memorable Remarks: Dr Kapoor spoke of the day he informed Wendy Dio of her husband's diagnosis That was November 13, 2009 He told the audience of Ronnie asking him to 'figure out, how to beat this.".. Dr Kapoor added, "He made me a better doctor, to listen more.".. (Ronnie) told me how he could taste the metal (from his chemo treatments) and how he wanted to 'kick the hell out of this cancer.".. The Ronnie James Dio, Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund's GOAL is in "stopping cancer before it starts."

    Final Remark by Dr Kapoor: "Make sure family and friends get checked for cancer.. Stand Up and Shout!"

    Trunk introduces Mr Adam Parsons.

    Speaker: Mr Adam Parsons, for the Stand Up & Shout Cancer Fund, soon to be Foundation (as he eloquently points out).

    Memorable Remarks: "Inspiration in Life, Inspiration In Death." The first news of two memorial concerts in honor of RJD will be held in the fall 2010 "One will be in London, England and the other in Los Angeles, California More information", Mr Parsons' points out, "will be updated on with information of venues, dates, artists appearing The plan is to have an annual event."

    5:33 pm : Wendy Dio is seen walking up to the podium.

    Memorable Moment: Wendy Dio, Ronnie's widow, has made her way on stage with the help of an unknown family member or friend, as the audience below, rises to give her a standing ovation One of the speakers, (I believe it was Mr Parsons) had mentioned that Wendy, within 4 hours after Ronnie's death (on May 16th) had arrived to the Forest Lawn (Cemetery) grounds to began preparations for this Public Memorial Event.

    So, as she appeared with her head tilted slightly down, her voice, slightly cracking, she spoke with a British accent, as she thanked the audience for being apart of the celebration of her husband's life Tears are seen streaming down her face.

    Wendy leaves the stage And then, a Video Clip of 'Stand Up And Shout' is shown.

    Final Song Performed:
  • "Catch The Rainbow" by Rainbow Music by Ritchie Blackmore, lyrics by Ronnie James Dio From the album Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow (1975) Sung by Glenn Hughes.
  • Other key musicians on performance of this track: Scott Warren and Craig Goldy.

    Trunk: Final thoughts on the musical legacy of Ronnie James Dio, "Consistency", "Quality", "Incredible" as his recordings (from over) 30 years ago." "He gave back", "Respect" He also briefly mentions a reception given in honor of Ronnie, the day before (May 15th) at the Rainbow Bar and Grill.

    5:50 pm Trunk: He was "Simply The Best".

    The ceremony officially ends.

    Then all in attendance were able to pay their final respects to the late musician A line was formed near the casket, beginning with those who were in the hall with either their silver, white, or blue wristbands, followed by those standing outside the Hall of Liberty auditorium.


    Although Scott Warren performed an instrumental version of Dio's 'This Is Your Life' at the beginning of the ceremony; I thought this video, in a some respects, mirrored some of the material shown during the entire ceremony with the exception of the excerpts from his final interview with a Houston, Texas (39 News - KIAH) television station which aired on March 29, 2010.

    \m/   R.I.P Ronnie (1942-2010)   \m/

    Show notes provided courtesy of Julie Barela Mills.