In a new interview with Danny Stoakes, Wendy Dio talked about Ronnie James Dio‘s experience in Black Sabbath as Ozzy Osbourne‘s successor.
After Ozzy Osbourne’s departure, Black Sabbath replaced him with Ronnie James Dio for vocals. While it was hard to capture the same essence as Osbourne, Dio’s efforts to get Black Sabbath on the right track, which included the landmark record ‘Heaven and Hell,’ which was released in 1980, showed fans his determination.
Dio lived in the spotlight as Black Sabbath’s frontman for three years before he wanted to work on his solo project. Although it was a rough journey for Dio to be accepted by Black Sabbath fans, he was able to accomplish what Osbourne had achieved.
Wendy Dio stated that it was hard for Ronnie James Dio to fill Osbourne’s shoes. However, she added that they both created different sounds for Black Sabbath. While Osbourne was an innovator, Ronnie James Dio was more melodic. However, Wendy mentioned that it was tough for Ronnie James Dio in the beginning because the fans didn’t accept him as the frontman, but eventually, he was loved by many.
Wendy Dio‘s thoughts on Ronnie James Dio as Ozzy Osbourne’s successor:
“[Ozzy’s shoes were] very hard shoes to fill, definitely. Ozzy, when Ozzy was on top form, was one of the best frontmen ever, along with David Lee Roth. He wasn’t a great singer. Ronnie was a great singer, so the band, when [Ronnie] went into the band, the music changed a little; it was more melodic and completely different.
I’ve always said: there’s Black Sabbath [with Ozzy], and there’s Black Sabbath [with Ronnie], and they’re both as good. One is not better than the other; it’s just they’re different, they’re totally different. I mean, Ozzy was an innovator, and that’s music that was the innovations of the start of heavy metal, and I would never put that down. But Ronnie made a difference; he was different. He was more melodic; his songs were different, and his stage performance was different.
But it was very hard. He got spat on, and he got booed and a lot of things in the beginning, but Ronnie, carried on and did his thing. And then I think the kids started to really accept him. And, in fact, some kids I talk to don’t even know about Black Sabbath before ‘Heaven And Hell,’ but that’s the younger generation.”
Ronnie James Dio sadly passed away on May 16, 2010. To remember Ronnie’s memory and celebrate his 80th birthday, Rhino has released a 4-CD Collection featuring remixed and remastered versions of producer Joe Barresi’s ‘Holy Diver.’