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Ronnie James Dio Awards Gala 2014: Gnarly Charlie's Chat With HALESTORM's Lzzy And Arejay Hale

By Charlie Steffens aka Gnarly Charlie, Writer/Photographer
Tuesday, March 25, 2014 @ 10:24 AM

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A rockstar-studded affair took place at the Avalon in Hollywood on Monday, March 17th as some of hard rock's finest performers gathered for the 3rd Annual Ronnie James Dio Awards Gala and listening party for Ronnie James Dio 's tribute album, This is Your Life.

The songs performed at the event featured "super collaborations" of musicians:

  • “I” - Oni Logan, Rowan Robertson, Mike Orlando, Jimmy Bain and Brian Tichy
  • “Straight Through the Heart” - HALESTORM
  • “Stargazer” - Tim Ripper Owens, Oni Logan, Mike Orlando, Craig Goldy, Bjorn Englen, Simon Wright and Scott Warren
  • “Neon Knights” - Corey Taylor, Christian Martucci, Scott Ian, Duff McKagan and Roy Mayorga
  • “Rainbow in the Dark” - Corey Taylor, Christian Martucci, Scott Ian, Jason Christopher and Roy Mayorga
  • “Stand Up and Shout” - All Star Jam
Before awards were presented and performances began, Charlie Steffens of KNAC.COM spoke with HALESTORM's Lzzy Hale and Arejay Hale. HALESTORM is featured on the This is Your Life album, covering "Straight Through the Heart". Here is a snippet of the conversation:

KNAC.COM: I'm here with Lzzy Hale and Arejay Hale, who are here for the Ronnie James Dio tribute party. What songs are you going to perform?

LZZY: We're performing "Straight Through the Heart"and I think there's an end-all jam where we're just going to get up and sing "Stand Up and Shout".

AREJAY: Yeah, I think we're just gonna bum rush the stage. It's gonna be a free for all. It's going to be fun.

KNAC.COM: As kids, were you BLACK SABBATH, RAINBOW, DIO fans?

LZZY: The first thing we heard from Ronnie--his solo career--was Holy Diver, the record. And then we ended up digging in to the Sabbath years. And then back into RAINBOW. We did the whole loop-around. I mean, honestly, we had some awesome rock and roll parents. When we got interested in music, they were like, "Here. Listen to this. This is good music."

AREJAY: Our dad, he's a bass player, so he was into a life of music. So it was really helpful for us, I think, starting that early, having parents that knew good music. That's what we were raised on. The music back when it was great.

KNAC.COM: You signed with Atlantic early on. How old were you then?

LZZY: It was 2005.

AREJAY: I think I was 17 and you were probably 21. Something like that, yeah. So we've been performing for a long time. Well, not that long. I won't give away our age (laughs). We've been with it for a while, yeah.

KNAC.COM: What is your heart's response to being here?

AREJAY: So many things. Not only with Dio and how great he was and how incredible it was to meet him, but also everybody else that's here. These are the people that we look up to. And for them to consider us peers? What's so cool about the rock community is we're all about helping each other out. Then on top of that, you know, both of us have experienced a lot of things, having lived with cancer in our family. So everything stacked on top of each other makes it absolutely incredible.

LZZY: And like we were saying before. I think that all these people just being touched by Ronnie and his personality and his legacy, not just as a musician but as a person. Everybody here has kind of taken us under their wing. We're new kids on the block. We shouldn't be allowed in the door, technically. And everybody has kind of welcomed us with open arms.

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