To commemorate the 5 year anniversary of the passing of Ronnie James Dio, Jimmy Kay from Canada’s ‘The Metal Voice’ recently caught up with guitarist Rowan Robertson (Dio, Bang Tango, DC4) who played and co-wrote on the Dio Classic ‘Lock up the Wolves’ Album.
In the interview Rowan talks about the unreleased Ronnie James Dio songs and the‘Lock up the Wolves’ writing and recording sessions plus the new Bang Tango Documentary called ‘Attack of Life’
When asked about the song writing process on Lock up the Wolves.
“Ronnie used to like to work from a Riff first which usually he came to his guitar player for, so what I would have to do come up with loads of riffs and play them one by one. Then what we would do is play, jam the riff and sit there and stand and go where can we take it anyone got any ideas? We would record them on a boom box and Ronnie would take them home overnight and come up with let’s say a vocal melody or might already have titles sitting around. I remember he came in once and he said, I’ve got it title of the album LOCK UP THE WOLVES.
Ronnie wrote with the band all the time, he used to say this type of music comes from a band in a room.”
When asked about why Jimmy Bain, Vinny Appice and Claude Schnell left the band after the writing of the album.
“As far as the reasons for it you really have to talk to Wendy Dio cause Ronnie’s not here. It was a difficult time for Ronnie cause you could feel the change in the industry. Looking back it was obvious it was coming to an end and I think Ronnie felt the pressure in that. For some reason that Ronnie needed to make a change with the exception of Vinnie. “
When asked if there was any material recorded with Dio that has not yet surfaced during the Lock up the Wolves Sessions?
“There are two songs that I got that are Boom box recordings that didn’t make the record but I ‘ve played them for Wendy and that she said the quality isn’t good enough to release them. One was called ‘Hell wouldn’t take her’ and the other ‘The river between us’ and neither of them made the album and I know that Craig Goldy has rehearsal stuff that didn’t make the albums that he made with Ronnie I think out of respect he is not gonna be putting them out there.”
When asked about the new documentary about Bang Tango
“I watched the movie with Joe Leste the singer and Drew Fortier the director at the Chicago premier and Joe got up at one point and stormed out of the room . And then afterwards he had his arm around Drew Fortier, man I was only kidding. So I think Joe feels ok with the movie but he also feels a little bit frustrated that he feels a little bit misrepresented. I thought the movie was very good
Watch the interview here: