It is with a great deal of sadness that I’m writing these words: At 7:45 am, metal music legend and iconic frontman, Ronnie James Dio lost his battle with stomach cancer at the age of 67. I don’t think I need to rehash things that have already been said, suffice to say, he was one of the most influential and distinct voices in the history of heavy music. Whether it was his time with Rainbow, Black Sabbath, DIO, or Heaven and Hell, his voice held a power and character that will likely never be seen again.
Dio’s wife Wendy made this statement on RJD’s official website: “Today my heart is broken. Ronnie passed away at 7:45 am, (on the) 16th May. Many, many friends and family were able to say their private goodbyes before he peacefully passed away. Ronnie knew how much he was loved by all. We so appreciate the love and support you all have given us. Please give us a few days of privacy to deal with this terrible loss. Please know he loved you all and his music will live on forever.”
Dio’s connection to horror may be indirect but his subject matter, lyrically, was dark-basically, the things that we all love as fans. He was known as a great guy and he was always very loyal to his fans. This love was returned as fans backed him year after year, with each project he was a part of. He seemed to make bands better. Need an example? Look no further than the Dio-era Black Sabbath. Point is, he was loved by a lot of folks that write for this website, adored by millions of people, and wrote great, timeless rock and roll music. He’s one of the guys that seemed invincible-like he’d live forever. Now that he’s passed on, the music world will be less interesting and definitely less pure. Rest well, Magic Man…the world will catch up to you someday.