For The Metal Voice former singer of Anthrax, Neil Turbin spoke with The Rods Guitarist David “Rock” Feinstein and Cousin of Ronnie James Dio on Thursday, November 7 2019 at the “Bowl For Ronnie” event at PINZ Bowling Center in Studio City. Feinstein recalls Ronnie’s sense of humour, powerful voice and how he developed as a writer.
When asked about the early years playing gigs with Ronnie Dio And The Prophets
” Ronnie was something special, when you hear Ronnie sing you know he was singing from his heart and from his soul and his lyrics are so meaningful. In the early days when we when we started out before we made records I was in a club band with Ronnie called ‘Ronnie Dio and the Prophets’ we were a cover band. Because we had Ronnie’s voice we were capable of doing any cover song. When we would go and play bars we would blow people’s minds because we were able to do so many different types of songs. I can remember one time we played a college when we came out on stage we could hear chuckling from the audience because of our height. I mean people were actually laughing at us when we walked out on stage but as soon as the first note was struck and when Ronnie started singing there was no more laughing it was just like jaw-dropping. Ronnie was a powerhouse vocalist.”
When asked about Ronnie’s sense of humour
“Ronnie had a great sense of humour there were just times I would laugh or I would be crying because he would do impersonations of people and talk like just so funny. It’s one of the things I really miss about him. Ronnie used impersonate Ed Sullivan all the time or Alfred Hitchcock, those type of people he would talk like.”
When asked about opening for Elton John during his first tour
“We opened for Elton John at the University of Massachusetts on his first tour of the United States. This was in a cafeteria and the stage was about 12 inches high. We played and then Elton John came on and we’re standing next to the stage watching saying who is this guy? We listened to two or three songs and we left. History tells you now that Elton john was a super star. Some of the most amazing songs ever and we got to be there from the very beginning.”
When asked about Ronnie’s inspiration for lyrics
“Ronnie was a very smart guy I can vouch for that because when I went to visit him nothing would happen the whole day until he finished the crossword puzzle in the newspaper. He had a brilliant mind, he read a lot, his vocabulary was incredible and he had the imagination to create these songs, the scenarios in the songs. Family Feud was a big deal and so were sports.”
The “Bowl For Ronnie” is an evening of fun, food, a raffle drawing for prizes and memorabilia. and, of course, bowling with rockers and celebrities competing for trophies kicks off at 6:30 p.m., with open bowling and a VIP pre-party for lane sponsors, celebrities and their guests. Music for the pre-party will be supplied by DJ Will.100% of the net proceeds from the “Bowl For Ronnie” will go to the Dio Cancer Fund, which is now in its tenth year of raising awareness and much-needed funding for cancer research. Individual tickets and lane sponsorships are now on sale, and participants are encouraged to gather friends, family and co-workers for the ultimate bowling team.