The frontman of thrash metal band Powersurge and a lifelong fan of legendary singer-songwriter Ronnie James Dio, Jamshed Chowdhury, sounded overwhelmed on hearing Dio's name. Jamshed has a few cover recordings of his songs, but he says he lacks the guts to release them, given the extent of Dio's musical prowess.
Dio is one of the names in rock music that resonates with excellence and nostalgia. And today would have marked the trailblazing musician's 75th birth anniversary if he were alive to see the day.
"Undoubtedly, Dio is one of the greatest vocalists of all time. And not only is he a very good songwriter but he also has an incredible vocal range and his musical abilities are absolutely incomparable," Jamshed said.
Born on July 10, 1945, in Portsmouth, US, Ronald James Padavona, better known as Dio, took an interest in opera as a child. While still in high school, Dio formed his first rock-n-roll group "The Vegas Kings", decades before he rose through the ranks of the 1960s heavy metal scene as one of heavy metal's pre-eminent vocalists, and eventually became the man who pioneered the genre.
Dio is also known for popularizing "the sign of the horns" - the hand gesture that signifies one's devotion to rock music as a whole.
Fronting the English heavy metal band Black Sabbath, Dio came into the limelight with his remarkable prowess as singer-songwriter. He joined Black Sabbath in 1979, replacing the original vocalist Ozzy Osbourne.
With Dio, the band released three highly successful studio albums - Heaven & Hell (1980), Mob Rules (1981) and Dehumanizer (1992). But he left the band in 1982 to form his own band "Dio". A decade later, he appeared with Black Sabbath as the vocalist to record Dehumanizer.
To Jamshed, the shift in sound from Ozzy Ousbourne to Dio's vocal is very evident in Mob Rules. "Most importantly, heavy metal was uncharted waters for Black Sabbath but Dio guided the band into the heavy metal territory, and his contribution to the band's success is unmatched," he added, as he spoke about the master songsmith's gift of timeless music with classic favourite bands - Black Sabbath, Rainbow, Dio and Heaven & Hell.
Within the span of almost five decades, Dio breathe life into numerous songs namely Heaven & Hell (1980) - which was also Black Sabbath's first album to feature Dio after replacing Ozzy, Mob Rules (1980) and Turn Up The Night (1981) with Black Sabbath; Man On The Silver Mountain (1975) and Rainbow Eyes (1978) with Rainbow; Children of The Sea (1980), Rainbow In The Dark (1983), Hungry For Heaven (1985) and Stargazer (2010) with Dio.
Dio had his last concert over a decade ago, on August 29, 2009, with his band Heaven & Hell at the House of Blues in Atlantic City. Three months later, he was diagnosed with stomach cancer, from which he died the following year.
But within the hearts of his uncountable number of fans, Dio's music is forever forged in his flames of lapsed faith, a cynicism of those who seek power and an unprecedented supremacy over the dominion of heavy metal music.