Dio Newcastle City Hall 1983

Dio Newcastle City Hall 1983
Support from Waysted
I first saw the late Ronnie James Dio when he fronted the band Elf. Elf were support act on the Deep Purple Burn tour of 1974, which I caught at Newcastle Odeon. My mate John also reminded me that we saw Elf as support for Johnny Winter at the New Victoria Theatre, London, also in 1974. I them saw him several times in Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow, and also in Black Sabbath. Ronnie was a great rock singer, with a tremendous range, his style mixing heavy metal with an almost operatic approach. Ronnie was also tremendously charismatic and powerful on stage, with a great stage presence which transcended his diminutive stature. I can picture him now leading the crowd on, his hands making the devil’s horn salute. A great talent, who is much missed. By 1984 Ronnie was of sufficient stature to be able to front his own band Dio. Playing alongside him were the three other great rock talents of Vinny Appice on drums; Jimmy Bain on bass and Vivian Campbell on guitar. Dio’s music drew heavily from his previous bands, retaining Ronnie’s distinctive style, and some of the dark satanic imagery of Sabbath. The set was a mix of track from the the new Dio lp, Holy Diver, and rainbow and Sabbath songs: Stand Up and Shout; Straight Through the Heart; Shame on the Night; Children of the Sea (Black Sabbath); Holy Diver; Stargazer (Rainbow: a great favourite of mine at the time; I’d forgotten this one!); Heaven and Hell (Black Sabbath); Rainbow in the Dark; Man on the Silver Mountain (Rainbow: another great song); Starstruck (Rainbow). Encore: Evil Eyes; Don’t Talk to Strangers. Support came from Waysted, Pete Way of UFO’s side project, which also featured fellow UFO member Paul Raymond.

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