I got hold of Dio's European Tour dates for fall 1993 and I immediately bought plane ticket to Munich and back from Vienna. I also bought an interrail ticket for the trip, so I was quite broken after that. Never mind the money, it is Dio that counts.
I waited quite anxiously for the tour. On one Saturday morning I took off from Helsinki-Vantaa Airport and headed for the tour with my backpack full of change of clothes. Here is included the tour report:
20.11.1993: Jurahalle, Neumarkt, Germany
This place was next to some sporthall - I guess that also the Jurahalle had previously been a sporthall too. I saw no Dio tour promotion anywhere in Neumarkt, not even at Jurahalle itself. There were about 1000-1500 people there anyway, with at least some people from Czech Republic, too.
I don't remember the concert too well, probably because I was so happy to be there. I remember that the audience wasn't into the show in the beginning but towards the end of the show, they started to get warmed up. ...Except maybe some short, fat lady on my left side (I was in the first row near the left speakers), who smoked pot almost all the time ;).
After the show, we (some local fans, one girl who had been at a couple of shows before this and me) waited outside at the back door for about an hour. It was quite freezing cold but luckily Dio's tour bus had engine running and it was warmer there near the engine.
Then, eventually, Ronnie's personal 'guardian' Willie (I don't know his exact title, he just takes care of everything Ronnie asks him to take care of) came to let us in. The band was there and gave people autographs. I talked with Ronnie for some time and when I looked around next time, almost everyone had gone away, I was there just with Ronnie, Willie and two fans who took me to Nurnberg in their car after the show (thanks to you, if you happen to read this some day;). And, of course, there were some other Dio fans who were travelling with Dio. They were Mary, Giulio and Claudia (Mary & Giulio are an Italian couple who both are great Dio fans, and Claudia is a German girl who is also a really great Dio fan).
Ronnie was really nice guy, he consider his fans as true friends and listened what they had to say and so on. I've said this several times during last year, but I say it again... Ronnie really doesn't place himself above the fans, he is just like you and me there at the backstage. He seemed to have time for every fan (I wasn't talking all the time there at Neumarkt, he talked with other fans, too;).
22.11.1993 Halle Gartlage, Osnabruck, Germany
This place looked like some market hall. Part of the hall had been closed off with a curtain and about 1/3 of the hall was the concert area. There were bit more people there, maybe around 1700. The overall feel was much better here than in Neumarkt, people were into the music right from the beginning. For Dio's music, that is, since the Freak Of Nature got a very, very little response from the audience.
After the show I met one Dio fan from Holland, Trudy. She joined Mary, Giulio and Claudia and travelled with them for most shows. We waited together for some time at backstage - there was someone's boombox playing some rave music (I was told it was rave music, I only know that it was horrible). So, after some time, Ronnie came in dancing to the music - it was quite an interesting experience to see him doing that ;). Well, it didn't last too long since he danced to the boombox and shut it.
23.11.1993 Stadthalle, Offenbach, Germany
This was quite a nice place, too. The audience was really into the show... I was in the first row just in the middle and I really had to fight to keep that place. Dio gave second encore here, he hadn't done it before this anywhere on this tour. Freak Of Nature got quite much feedback here too, although someone behind me was yelling 'Dio - Dio - Dio' all the time. When Dio came on the stage, I didn't hear a single word from him.
There I met one American soldier, Dan, who was a captain in US army in Germany. I didn't have any place to sleep and he took me at his home in Stuttgart and let me sleep there (thanks, Dan, to you too if you ever read this).
24.11.1993 Forum, Ludwigsburg, Germany
This place was quite interesting. It was rather new building and very big. The concert hall was on the second floor and it wasn't all that big any more. The rest of the building was used as theatre and concert hall, too, if I understood correctly. This place was quite near some castle - I went there to ask the doorman where I could find Dio but unfortunately the doorman didn't speak English ;).
The concert was very, very intense too. Probably even more intense than Offenbach gig. I was first in the front row but in the middle of the Dio show I gave up my place because I started to feel sick. Well, I was about two meters from the front row for about two songs and I had to get back to there ;). It was quite difficult though, and I made it only for the last song - Dio gave another encore here too.
At backstage I met two guys from California or Canada (sorry, but I really don't remember which one it was;). I understood that they were in Europe to see concerts here because they were interested in European metal bands.
25.11.1993 Terminal 1, Munich, Germany
This was quite interesting place too, although I didn't like it right from the beginning. This was an old airport and at least part of the terminals were bit modified and used as concert halls and discos. The place was quite far from Munich centrum (and actually, I'm not sure if it was in Munich at all, it might've been a town called Riem too).
There were not that many people there and they really weren't into the show either. Although everyone stood there, only about 100 people stood up and shouted. Dio noticed this too and when he came back to do the first encore, he said to microphone 'We came back only because of very few people there, the rest of you - blah'. The audience somehow got really well into the show during the encore and Dio did another encore there, too.
This time thanks definitely don't go to that idiotic doorman who had about 2 teeth in his mouth. Definitely no thanks to you, whoever you were.
27.11.1993 Mehrzweckhalle, Birkelbach, Germany
I've titled some places above there as interesting, but this was definitely the most interesting place for a concert... There was only one train / day which stopped there. The town had about 500 inhabitants. The 'downtown' consisted of about 30-40 houses. There were lots of fields and forests around, lots of sheep and cows all over the place and so on. The place was very beautiful, but it definitely didn't look like a place for a heavy metal concert.
Anyway, there were lots of Dio posters everywhere, much more than anywhere else on this tour. When I talked with different people there, everyone knew about the concert, including small kids and 70-years-old people.
I was at backstage before the show talking with Ronnie and those fans who also followed Dio (Mary, Giulio, Claudia and Trudy). We all thought that we will have a private party in the evening - we know that at least six people will be there. We spent the whole day at backstage and when we (only us fans, not Ronnie;) came out of there, we only could look around to see the place FULL of people. There were people from about 4 to about 70 years old. The place was quite small in size but after the show I heard from the band that there were around 1500 sold tickets. Three times as many people as there was in the whole town.
There was also second warming-up band. It was called 'X Wilder' and it came from Siegen, the nearest bigger city. They played only about 30 minutes, but the audience was wild with them. Then Freak Of Nature came on stage and the audience was even wilder. After the show I talked with Freak Of Nature guys and they said the concert was definitely the best gig they've ever had. When Dio played, just about everyone there really rocked with them. I saw those old people dancing there, too, and people around 50 throwing their fists and evil eye signs into the air. The concert was almost perfect, I think, the only negative point was that the most of the people there were drunk. Not as drunk as normal Finnish summer festival audience, but drunk anyway.
And now comes the thanks section, again. This time the people in question might read this on the net... I slept at one small hostel there in Birkelbach. In the morning I met a young couple there who drove me to Dortmund railway station. Without them I'd have arrived late to the next show, but with their help, I managed to get there in time. Thanks to you!
28.11.1993 Music Hall, Hannover, Germany
This place was an old factory hall, which had a big tent inside it. The concert was held in that tent.
The concert was quite good, although Freak Of Nature received nearly no feedback from the audience. In the beginning of the Dio show the front row was quite nice place to be, but in the middle of the show people started rushing around and you had to fight to keep your place there...
This time thanks go to those two girls and one guy who drove me to Hannover railway station after the show.
30.11.1993 Dampfblaserhalle, Augsburg, Germany
The place was some old warehouse about three kilometres from the downtown Augsburg. It took me quite a while to find the place, since it was behind some quite big supermarket and I didn't know the exact street address for the place.
The audience in Augsburg was bit quiet for the whole concert. Me and Claudia were in the first row in the front of Ronnie and no-one was pushing us from behind or from sides. Anyway, Ronnie liked the show and they played two encores here too.
Ok, this time thanks go to those guys who drove me and Claudia to the downtown in the night, as well as to that guy at Augsburg youth hostel who let me in at 2 am.
01.12.1993 Volkshaus, Zurich, Switzerland
This venue was the same venue where Dio played almost exactly 10 years before on Holy Diver tour (on Holy Diver tour he played at Volkshaus on November 27th, 1983). Good place.
Freak Of Nature were received bit better here than normally. For Dio's show, the audience was bit quieter than usually. Great show anyway, although Dio gave only one encore there. It might have not been because of the audience, but because of some problems with Italian promotor.
After the show, when we were at the backstage, we heard that the next concert was cancelled because the Italian promotor had goofed up. Everybody felt really sad, especially because Ronnie really wanted to play there. They called the promotor in the night but he didn't want to take Dio to Italy. So, Milano concert was cancelled, it was supposed to be on 02.12.1993 at Palasesto, Milano, Italy.
Well, something funny happened there in Volkshaus, anyway. The band and crew members started to draw pictures on the top of the table. They draw pictures of band members, as well as some guys from the crew. Willie, Ronnie's 'guardian', was a real artist, he draw many really funny pictures of their bus drivers etc... It was also rather funny to notice the Volkshaus' owner's face when he noticed what was happening ;). Luckily he didn't say anything....
Anyway, thanks go to Mosh, who showed me some record stores and Zurich university (and let me to log in to my account from there;). The crazy Finn is back home, even in one piece....
04.12.1993 Bank Austria Zelt, Vienna, Austria
This was the last concert for me, and this place was definitely the most difficult one to find. Eventually, following my ears, I found the place. Thanks drum tester, I wouldn't have found the place without your help ;). This venue was a tent at some parking lot (I think it was a parking lot, but because of the snow, I can't say for sure).
The concert itself was really great. There was about 2500 sold tickets, which means that this was the biggest concert on this tour I took part of. The audience was quite quiet during Freak Of Nature, but went wild when Dio came on stage. I had bought some flowers before the show and threw them to Dio during the first encore. Unfortunately the bouguet (spelling????) got splitted up when I threw it to the stage... Ronnie's cook Rachel had her birthday on this day and Ronnie took her on stage before first encore. The tour manager gave Rachel a bottle of champagne and a birthday cake and the whole audience sung 'Happy Birthday' to Rachel ;).
At the backstage after the show it was really difficult to say goodbyes to Ronnie and to the rest of the band. I really, really enjoyed the tour and would've liked it to last forever. Anyway, Ronnie said that they might come to Europe to tour festivals in the summer, so now I have a money-saving operation going on again... I gotta be there if he comes to Europe in the summer ;).
Thanks go to Matthias (who has a tattoo on his shoulder, the tattoo has Murray showing the evil eye sign, as well as who has Murray painted on his ex car's hood) who helped me to get to the hostel...
In total, this tour was a really great experience for me. Although it ate all my money, it was well worth of it. Ronnie was a really great person, he had time for his fans after every single show, he spent hours and hours in the night talking to them and writing autographs. Thanks, Ronnie, for this tour.
This page is maintained by Tapio Keihänen,
The page has been updated on 10.05.1999
URL: http://www.dio.net/tour/reviews/931120_TapioKeihanen.html, the front page http://www.dio.net/.