Ronnie James Dio penned metal classic Holy Diver for Black Sabbath originally
Ronnie James Dios widow has claimed the late metal legend penned his 1983 hit ‘Holy Diver’ for Black Sabbath originally.
The seminal musician – who died from stomach cancer aged 67 in 2010 – replaced Ozzy Osbourne as frontman of the ‘Paranoid’ group after he was fired by his bandmates in 1979.
Former Rainbow bandleader Dio appeared on three Sabbath studio albums, 1980’s ‘Heaven and Hell’, 1981’s ‘Mob Rules’ and 1992’s ‘Dehumanizer (1992).
He quit in 1982 to form Dio and took their drummer Vinny Appice with him. He later formed Heaven and Hell with Sabbath’s axe-slayer Tony Iommi.
And during an interview on ‘Full Metal Jackie’ to mark what would have been Dios 80th birthday, his wife Wendy revealed ‘Holy Diver’ and ‘Don’t Talk to Strangers’ were both written by Dio when he was still in Sabbath.
Both tracks appeared on Dios debut studio album ‘Holy Diver’.
She spilled: “Ronnie always did what he wanted to do. He never listened to what the record label wanted or anyone else. He always stuck to his guns in making the album. He hoped it would be successful. None of us realised how successful it was going to be. We really had been toying around with things and he had written Holy Diver and Don’t Talk to Strangers during the time he was in Black Sabbath, so they were supposed to be Sabbath songs.
“When he left Sabbath, we had a solo deal for him and he just put those songs [on the album] and got the band together, wrote more songs and it came out. Everyone was blown away about the reception that we got and how great the album was and how it’s stood [the test] of time. It’ll be 40 years next year.”
Elsewhere, Wendy spoke about giving ‘Stranger Things’ a vintage Dio jacket for Joe Quinn’s Eddie Munson to wear in the hit Netflix sc-fi series.
She said: “It’s amazing. I think Ronnie would be so happy and so proud that all this time later there’s new generations listening to and wearing his stuff. Before the pandemic, they asked me if they have permission to license the logo and they were going to buy some Dio stuff for the series.
“I said, ‘I have vintage stuff, why don’t I send you some?’ They were very appreciative, but then I didn’t hear anything for [a while] and I thought it must have been forgotten or not used. All of a sudden, the series is on and Eddie [Munson, one of the main characters] is wearing Ronnie’s The Last In Line T-shirt on his denim jacket and I thought it was so amazing. I was so happy and I just wish Ronnie could have been here to know that. I’m sure there’s a big smile on his face up in the sky.”