Before Ronnie Dio was RONNIE JAMES DIO, he was a baby-faced crooner in a 1950s boy band.
In Cortland, New York in 1957, Ronnie Dio (on bass guitar), Billy DeWolfe, Nick Pantas, and Tom Rogers, formed the band The Vegas Kings. Later adding Jack Musci and changing their name to Ronnie and the Rumblers after the Duane Eddy song ‘Rumble’. They played dances every weekend, and in 1958 they became popular enough that they were offered a bigger gig in Johnson City, New York under one condition, they had to change their name. The promoter felt the word “Rumblers” was too violent for a band and didn’t want to encourage fighting. So Ronnie and the Rumblers became, Ronnie and the Red Caps.
Ronnie and the Red Caps only released two singles: The first was ‘Conquest’/’Lover’, and the second was ‘An Angel Is Missing’/’What’d I Say’ which featured Ronnie Dio on lead vocals for both tracks.
Listen to a teenage Ronnie Dio sing ‘An Angel Is Missing’ above.
19 years later, he was invited to replace Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath and 3 years after that, Dio was formed.