TONY IOMMI On RONNIE JAMES DIO: 'He Loved His Fans'
September 27, 2022
BLACK SABBATH guitarist Tony Iommi was among the attendees at the London premiere of the first-ever career-spanning documentary on the life and times of legendary metal icon Ronnie James Dio, which was held Monday night (September 26) at the Curzon Soho Theatre. Speaking to TotalRock on the red carpet of last night's event, Iommi said about his late SABBATH and HEAVEN & HELL bandmate (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "You know, the thing is he loved his fans. Many times we'd say, 'C'mon, Ronnie. We've gotta go.' And he'd always see everybody. I mean, you can't always because you have to leave; you've gotta get the flight or you've gotta do this and that. But he'd always give them time. And he loved his fans; it was everything to him. He loved what he did. And he was a real professional. And that's one of the things I really liked about him as well. You'd know he'd go on stage and he'd be able to do it and put it on. He wouldn't pull anything out; he wouldn't cancel anything. He'd go on and do it."
"Dio: Dreamers Never Die" will be presented in more than 500 cinemas worldwide by Trafalgar Releasing and BMG for two days only on Wednesday, September 28 and Sunday, October 2. Executive-produced by Dio's widow and longtime manager Wendy Dio and fully authorized by the artist's estate, "Dio: Dreamers Never Die" delves deep into the singer's incredible rise from a '50s doo-wop crooner to his early rock days in ELF and Ritchie Blackmore's RAINBOW, to replacing Ozzy Osbourne in BLACK SABBATH, and finally cementing his rock star status with his own band, DIO. The film incorporates never-before-seen footage and personal photos, as well as offering intimate scenes with his closest peers, family, and friends, among them Wendy, Iommi, Geezer Butler, Glenn Hughes, Vinny Appice, Lita Ford, Rob Halford, Sebastian Bach, Eddie Trunk and Jack Black, as they bring viewers inside the life of one of rock and roll's true heroes and one of the most beloved figures in rock.
Iommi previously reflected on his time recording and touring with Dio as his bandmate in both BLACK SABBATH and HEAVEN & HELL in an April 2021 interview with Rockin' Metal Revival. At the time he said: "The last tour we did with Ronnie was real precious, and we had such a great time. And we really bonded. The last generation of the period with Ronnie was really close — everybody was close. Yeah, Ronnie was such a really nice person.
"What I liked about Ronnie [is] he gave everybody time," Tony continued. "It was just remarkable. Before the show, he'd have people in his dressing room — 'cause we'd have separate dressing rooms — he'd have people in there talking away and drinking and whatever. And he never warmed up or anything; he'd never done any kind of warming-up procedure before he went on stage. And he'd walk on stage and he'd just [sound] unbelievable; his voice was spot-on. It was just amazing, really, how he could do that.
"He was a really nice, caring character. He'd call me up — even just before he passed, he was on the phone to me, calling me from the hospital.
"It was very sad, really, [when he died]," Iommi added. "But he thought a lot of everybody — he really did. And he loved his fans."
Dio replaced Ozzy Osbourne in BLACK SABBATH in 1980, recording the "Heaven And Hell" and "Mob Rules" albums, plus "Live Evil", before leaving in 1982. He rejoined the group 10 years later for an album called "Dehumanizer", and again teamed with the group under the HEAVEN & HELL banner in 2006. HEAVEN & HELL released an album called "The Devil You Know" in 2009.
Ronnie passed away of stomach cancer on May 16, 2010 at the age of 67.
Dio was renowned throughout the world as one of the greatest and most influential vocalists in heavy metal history. The singer was diagnosed with cancer in late 2009. He underwent chemotherapy and made what is now his final public appearance in April 2010 at the Revolver Golden Gods Awards in Los Angeles.
Ronnie's long-awaited autobiography, titled "Rainbow In The Dark: The Autobiography", was released on July 2021 via Permuted Press.
Interviews with Tony Iommi, Wendy Dio and Thunder at the Dio Dreamers Never Die film UK premiere tonight in London….
BLABBERMOUTH.NET uses the Facebook Comments plugin to let people comment on content on the site using their Facebook account. The comments reside on Facebook servers and are not stored on BLABBERMOUTH.NET. To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).