Every now and then we like to look back on the music we grew up with; not only for the nostalgic purposes, but also to examine just how much music has changed. It’s not very often, however, that we can identify the shift in popular music by following just one musician’s career path. Such is the case with the late rock legend Ronnie James Dio. Known for his powerful vocal range, Dio was the frontman for several bands including Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Dio, and Elf. And while his metal career spanned several years, there’s one thing many of his fans might not be familiar with: Dio was once part of a doo-wop group called Ronnie & The Prophets.
For a few years in the early ’60s, Ronnie Dio and The Prophets released a number of doo-wop songs, before adding a keyboard player in 1968. The band then changed its name to The Electric Elves (which was shortened to The Elves and eventually just Elf) and, in 1972, released their first album. They would rise to fame during the next few years, and the rest is music history. Whether or not you were a fan of Dio’s metal, it’s hard to deny that he was an extremely gifted vocalist. Check out one of Dio’s doo-wop songs, 1963’s “I Told You So”, below. Talk about a rainbow in the dark!