Luke Morley, Thunder / “The first time I saw Ronnie sing was in 1974 when he was in Elf”

The London premiere of the emotional documentary DIO: Dreamers Never Die was held in Soho on Monday. Thunder guitarist and songwriter Luke Morley told MetalTalk’s Kahmel Farahani that it’s a wonderful thing to be able to celebrate the life and work of Ronnie James Dio. “The first time I saw Ronnie sing was in 1974 when he was in Elf, so it’s amazing. That’s 48 years ago. Shit, I’m old.”

Does Luke remember the feeling when Dio joined Sabbath after Ozzy? “Well, that album Heaven And Hell is spectacular,” Luke says. “Neon Nights is the first track on side one, and like everybody else, I was thinking, this could be weird. And then that track kicks in, and you go fucking hell. Great, yeah, he’s a great singer. An absolute pioneer, and you can tell that because now there are so many imitators, so many singers that want to sound like him, and nobody, of course, will because he’s unique.”

Most are impressed by how Ronnie moved between bands, maintaining his defining character. “He was a great singer,” Luke says. “With a voice like you can fit anywhere. It’s about the songs. If you’re a rock band and you’re looking for a singer, who would your first call be to? For a Heavy Metal band, it’s got to be Ronnie James Dio.”

Luke’s abiding memory of Ronnie? “I couldn’t believe that such a big voice came out of somebody so small,” he says.

We were saying to Wendy that it seems like great music, whether it’s Dio’s or Thunder’s, is moving across generations and that for kids now, it doesn’t make a difference, whether it’s their parent’s music or their brother’s music or whatever it is.

“That’s the great thing about rock music,” Luke says. “it will always be slightly cultish, and that’s cult with an ‘L’. That’s why it’s still here, and it still survives.”


In Part One, Wendy discusses Ronnie’s severed thumb, those doo-wop recordings, her role as manager and her relationship with Sharon Osbourne and Mick Wall. You can read Part One at

In Part Two, they cover Rainbow and Black Sabbath. You can read Part Two at

In Part Three, the cover DIO, the band, the dragon and how Wendy is happy that people are still listening to Ronnie’s music. You can read Part Three at

You can read MetalTalk’s review of the film at

Tickets for Dio: Dreamers Never Die are available from

You can read about and donate to the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up And Shout Cancer Fund at

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