Ride for Ronnie James Dio @ Los Encinos State Park – 05/06/2018
The 4rth annual Ride for Ronnie motorcycle ride & concert benefiting the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund was held on Sunday May 6, once again beginning at Glendale Harley Davidson and ending at Los Encinos State Historic Park for an afternoon of live music. The famed vocalist who fronted Rainbow, Black Sabbath and Dio passed away May 16, 2010 of stomach cancer and his legacy has been going strong thanks to his wife and manager Wendy Dio who is at the forefront of The Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund.
Now in its fourth year, the Ride for Ronnie has motorcycle riders assemble for a continental breakfast at Harley-Davidson of Glendale and then kickstands up for a scenic ride through Los Angeles ending at Los Encinos Park in Encino, where there is live music, raffles, live auctions, food trucks, vendor booths and more. The 2017 Ride for Ronnie event raised over $50,000 for the cancer charity, with the 2018 totals forthcoming.
Celebrity riders that gathered at Glendale HD included Gilby Clarke formerly of Guns n Roses, famed Rock photographer Neil Zlozower and had Wendy Dio strapping on a helmet to be the second rider for a lucky biker. Once at the park, live music was provided by Railgun, Classless Act, One More from the Road, Beasto Blanco, Dio Disciples and headlined by former Guns n Roses drummer Steven Adler and Adler’s All-Stars. Eddie Trunk and Melissa Maxx emceed the event and provided commentary and helped with all the auctions and giveaways.
To donate to the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund check out www.diocancerfund.org.
From Long Beach, CA, these shred metal strapping young lads are up and coming thrashers that have proven themselves worthy in the local SoCal metal scene over the last two years. They successfully got the day off to a raging start at 11:30am to begin the afternoon of music at Encinos State Park. Led by the powerful guitar shredding of Luke Man, each of these boys (Cole Jones – vocals/guitar, Brice Snyder – bass and Paul Gehlhar – drums) are very talented musicians.
Classless Act made their live debut at this event and certainly made an impact and created a buzz. The band founded by drummer London Hudson (son of guitar legend Slash) with childhood friend Nico Tsangaris (guitar) along with vocalist Derek Day (vocals), Dane Pieper (guitar) and Franco Gravante (bass) delivered a high energy set of driving rock anthems.
This band definitely has a future as Day is a great vocalist with an even more impressive stage presence and the hard-hitting drum attack of London Hudson is impressive for a 15 year old. Classless Act’s next live performance is at The Whisky A Go Go on Thursday night May 10 opening for Steven Adler.
One More From the Road
A Lynyrd Skynyrd tribute band these guys and gals played all the classics. With a piano player, three guitarists, backup singers, One More From the Road is the real deal.
The most high-octane and theatrical band you may have never heard of, Beast Blanco rocked the stage for 45 minutes with their set of raw rock n roll debauchery. Led by Alice Copper bassist Chuck Garric on guitar and vocals along with Calico Cooper (yes Alice Cooper’s daughter) on vocals and theatrics as well as Chris Latham on lead guitar this band is what you would get if you took Rob Zombie and Alice Cooper and put them in a blender . . . you would pour out Beasto Blanco.
The show consisted of hard rock music with various stage props as Garric and Cooper traded off vocals with the result being an intense performance that was the highlight of the day. Garric is a great vocalist and Cooper is quite the performer as it is obvious that with Calico the apple does not fall far from the tree. The band did an epic cover of Alice Cooper’s “Feed My Frankenstein” as well as songs from their two albums Live Fast, Die Loud and Beasto Blanco.
Dio Disciples, the band created to keep the music and spirit of Ronnie James Dio alive is made up of primarily former members of Dio (Craig Goldy-guitar, Simon Wright-drums, Scott Warren-keyboards) as well as some other established musicians including Tim “Ripper” Owens and Oni Logan on vocals and Bjorn Englen on bass. The band is fully supported and endorsed by Wendy Dio.
Having performed at all previous Ride for Ronnie events, Dio Disciples take great care and pride in honoring the legacy of one of Heavy Metal’s greatest vocalists. Songs included “Holy Diver”, “Stand Up and Shout”, Egypt (The Chains are On)” as well as “Long Live Rock n Roll” and “Heaven and Hell”. Logan and Owens would trade off songs and occasionally share vocals as they both are incredibly talented vocalists and the perfect fit to sing these songs. The crowd showed the biggest response of the day throughout the Dio Disciples set as it is clear Dio has some of the most dedicated fans in the world. A group of Dio fans came all the way from Sweden to attend this event.
Adler’s All-Stars made their Ride for Ronnie debut in 2017 with a star-studded performance that included Steven Adler on drums, Lita Ford, Paul Shortino (Rough Cutt), Ace Von Johnson (Faster Pussycat), Jeff Pilson (Dokken) and many more. This year Adler’s All-Stars return with Steven Adler again anchoring the stage on the drum-kit along with Ira Black (I Am Morbid), Robbie Crane and Ricky Warwick (Black Star Riders), Joe Retta (Dio Disciples), Patrick Stone (Budderside) and many more.
The group of All-Stars blasted through songs from Guns n Roses, Thin Lizzy, Black Sabbath, Steppenwolf among others. It is always a good time seeing musicians getting to jam with other musicians that you wouldn’t normally see them play with. Everyone was certainly having a great time and this was a great way to end a day of fantastic music for an amazing cause.