Unforgettable Moments: El Paso’s Deep Connection with Dio
On May 16, 2010, the metal world lost one of the greatest singers of all time: Ronald James Padanova. Aka...Ronnie James Dio. In his honor, let's look at the memorable times he's ever come to El Paso. Starting with the band that arguably CREATED metal: Black Sabbath.
When did Dio first come to El Paso?
The first time he ever came to El Paso in 1980 during his time with Black Sabbath. The date was July 2, 1980. And the place...was none other than El Paso's County Coliseum as it was posted on the official Ronnie James Dio Facebook page. It was also revealed that this was the FIRST date on that tour; meaning this was the first time Ronnie came to the United States while playing with Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler & Bill Ward
That's right. The VERY FIRST stop while Ronnie James Dio fronted for Black Sabbath was none other than El Paso.
That wouldn't be the last time we would see Ronnie in El Paso
El Paso would have to wait a bit longer but he WOULD return shortly in 1983. He would return to the El Paso County Coliseum on October 11th, 1983. And the audio DOES exist...and you can hear it in its entirety.
Dio would make repeat appearances in El Paso; a total of 8 times between 1983-2003. Including on New Years Eve in 1984 (not a bad way to bring in the new year) This wouldn't be the first time a former Black Sabbath singer would play El Paso. Ozzy would do the same in 1981 & you can see that story that Dubba G wrote here.
The love for Dio never left El Paso
Sadly Dio never came back to El Paso after 2003; Dio was diagnosed with stomach cancer in September 2009 & would sadly pass away in 2010.
Years after Dio's passing, fans never forget about Dio. In fact there IS a Ronnie James Dio TRIBUTE band called Sacred Heart. Proving that the love for Dio is still present in El paso after all these years.
R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio. You'll be forever missed & loved in El Paso & around the world.