The legendary career of the late Ronnie James Dio just recorded another milestone, as Dio’s self-titled band’s 1983 album Holy Diver has reportedly been certified double platinum by the RIAA for over two million copies sold.
We say “reportedly” as the RIAA website has yet to update with the new certification, though the official Ronnie James Dio twitter account posted the news of the new certification complete with a framed photo of the artwork with the double platinum certification included.
According to the RIAA, Holy Diver was initially released on May 25, 1983, went gold (500,000 copies sold) on Sept. 12, 1984, and was officially certified as a platinum seller (1 million copies sold) on March 21, 1989. The certification date for the double platinum status has not been determined.
Holy Diver was the debut album for Dio’s self-titled band, coming about shortly after his first stint with Black Sabbath. The album topped out at No. 56 on the Billboard 200 album chart, but yielded the title track and “Rainbow in the Dark” as singles, two songs that remain staples in the metal community. “Rainbow in the Dark” actually charted at No. 14 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Chart. The album also includes the opening track “Stand Up and Shout” which was later used to name Dio’s cancer fund that aids cancer research and education.
Though the album is approaching 39 years old, there is still part of its legacy in use today. In a recent interview with Guitar World, guitarist Vivian Campbell revealed that he’s been using the Les Paul guitar he used for Holy Diver to work on music for Def Leppard’s Diamond Star Halos album and he’s used it frequently with the Dio-era spinoff Last in Line as well.
“I’ve just gotten really comfortable with it again,” says Campbell. “I like the closure of going full circle, starting my career with it and coming back to it.”
In addition to Dio and Campbell, the band for Dio’s debut included bassist Jimmy Bain and drummer Vinny Appice. Dio would go on to release 10 studio albums in total before Ronnie’s death from stomach cancer in 2010.
As we salute Dio’s Holy Diver going double platinum, check out two of the album’s biggest songs below.
Dio, “Holy Diver”
Dio, “Rainbow in the Dark”
80 Rock + Metal Acts With Multiple Platinum Albums
Selling a million copies of an album is a big deal and these acts did it more than once.