Def Leppard’s Vivian Campbell Has No Regrets About His Feud With Ronnie James Dio
Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell says that he has no regrets that he didn’t get a chance to put aside his differences with the late Ronnie James Dio prior to Dio’s death in 2010.
Campbell tells Radio Metal, “Even when I was in the band with Ronnie [James Dio] back in the days, we never had a very strong relationship beyond music. That was what brought us together: we were on stage together, recording and writing songs... It was a very strange relationship between he and I. It was a lot of miscommunication, of misunderstanding and I think a lot of it was generational.”
With the age difference between the pair, Campbell says that he found it “difficult” to communicate with Ronnie, and that he thinks the same was true for Dio’s communication with him.
According to Campbell, there is a common misconception that he left the Dio band on his own terms, but the truth is that he was fired. Explaining his departure, the Def Leppard guitarist says “I never wanted to quit the Dio band.”
As for why he and Dio never communicated after that, Campbell says “I didn't have any reason to contact him again after he fired me. It had been 25 or so years since Ronnie had fired me from the band. I've never seen him again, I've never spoken to him again, he never contacted me. It is what it is. I'm very proud of the records that we recorded together, but you can't go back. You gotta keep moving forward.”
Dio himself had some direct commentary about Campbell that he expressed in the following exchange with a fan that was captured on video after Heaven & Hell performed in New York City a few years back. Be warned, Dio uses a lot of very direct and foul language in this clip.