Archive for Cancer

The Man On The Silver Mountain

Posted in music, photography, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on May 19, 2010 by Kevin Estrada

Ronnie James Dio

(July 10, 1942 – May 16, 2010)

Dressing Room

Los Angeles, CA

April 1, 2005

Just like the millions of Rock Fans around the world, I was stunned this past Sunday morning to hear the news that Ronnie James Dio had passed away a few hours earlier.  Just a few weeks ago I was excited to see him on stage at the Golden God Awards, throwing his metal fingers in the air – as it should be.

Metal and Hard Rock has truly lost an icon, an innovator, and a gentlemen.  I had the pleasure to work with Ronnie a number of times over the years, and every experience was memorable.  He had the heart of a giant and the vocal pipes of an even larger man than that.  The music world will never be the same.

I shot this photo  of Ronnie in Motorhead’s dressing room in Los Angeles a few years ago.  As always, RJD was in a great mood and really played it up for my camera.  I am really going to miss the Holy Diver.

RJD Memorial Info:

Wendy Dio has asked that in lieu of sending flowers, please make a donation to the Ronnie James Dio “Stand Up And Shout Cancer Fund.” You can send your check or money order to the Niji Entertainment Group, 12400 Ventura Blvd. #624, Studio City, CA, 91604. From all of us at the Niji Entertainment Group.

Lastly, there will be a Public Memorial Service for Ronnie James Dio on Sunday, May 30th at 2:00 PM at The Hall Of Liberty located at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills, 6300 Forest Lawn Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90068.

Stand Up And Shout!

Posted in music, photography, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 3, 2010 by Kevin Estrada

Dio

Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre

Laguna Hills, CA

July 26, 1986

Besides battling wizards and dragons, Ronnie James Dio has gone head to head with such heavy-weights as Ozzy Osbourne, Gene Simmons, and even his former and now current band-mates Tony Iommi and Bill Ward. Ronnie is currently involved in the biggest and most fierce battle he has ever had, and we need to send him our prayers.

Just before Thanksgiving of 2009, Ronnie James Dio was diagnosed with the early stages of stomach cancer.  He jumped right into his cancer treatments, and despite canceling his European Tour, Dio and Heaven & Hell will perform in July at the High Voltage Festival in London.

I have had the honor to have met and worked with Ronnie a handful of times, and I can honestly say that Dio is one of, if not THE, nicest and most down to earth people in heavy music that I have ever, ever met.  For a man who has helped to bring Heavy Music to the masses as well as spearheading numerous charities and community fundraisers, he is genuinely grounded and modest.

The first time I met him, I thought I was going to crush his bones when we shook hands…and I am not much bigger than he is.  Besides, if it weren’t for Dio, who knows what two fingers we would be sticking in the air!

You can send cards, letters, well-wishes, etc. to Ronnie at:

Dio Fan Club

12400 Ventura Blvd.

Suite 624

Studio City, CA  91604

A True Symbol Of Salvation – The R.I.P. Series

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 20, 2008 by Kevin Estrada

Dave Pritchard
Armored Saint

Date Of Death: February 27, 1990
Cause Of Death: Leukemia

One thing that you need to understand about my early teens is that local bands were just as big as arena bands to us. We had the great and unfair advantage of seeing many of our local heroes blow up and become some of the biggest names in rock – Van Halen, Motley Crue, Ratt, etc. Armored Saint was next in line and in prime position. Armored Saint went from being the biggest unsigned local band in the San Gabriel Valley to a household name around the country.

During Armored Saint’s rollercoaster of a career, the band faced some serious changes that challenged the future of the mighty rockers. In 1989, the band made a bold decision to replace guitarist Phil Sandoval, recruiting another local hero, Jeff Duncan of Odin. As the new Saint lineup began work on new songs and demos for their upcoming album, guitarist Dave Pritchard was diagnosed with Leukemia. Unfortunately, the aggressiveness of the disease would prevent Pritchard from taking part in the final recording sessions of Symbol Of Salvation.

In a heartfelt move, Sandoval returned to Armored Saint, replacing Pritchard and bringing harmony to the Saint Family. Armored Saint honored Pritchard’s memory by using his guitar solo that he recorded on the four-track demo version of Tainted Past for the final album version that was released on Symbol Of Salvation.

Photographed with my old Canon AE1 Program and a cheap, no name 70mm-210mm f 5.6 lens. Shot on Kodak Ektachrome film.

No More Tears – The R.I.P. Series

Posted in music, photography, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on August 13, 2008 by Kevin Estrada

Randy Castillo
Ozzy Osbourne Band
Motley Crue

Date Of Death: March 26, 2002
Cause Of Death: Cancer

It was on Ozzy Osbourne’s No Rest For The Wicked Tour that I first really noticed the greatness in Randy Castillo’s drumming. I am not a drummer or an drum critic by any means, but what I gathered was that Randy was not the greatest at copying parts that other drummers wrote, he was great at being himself and creating his own feel.

Castillo was plagued with serious ailments that forced the drummer to pop in and out of tours during his career. Just before he was set to tour with Motley Crue in support of New Tattoo, he was diagnosed with an extremely serious ulcer that had ruptured his stomach. While recovering from his surgery, Castillo found a small lump on his jaw. Within a month, the lump had grown to the size of a golf ball. The diagnosis was a common form of skin cancer. A few months later this monster got the best of him.

I was fortunate enough to have hung out with Randy just prior to his passing one night at The House Of Blues in Los Angeles. Mike Inez of Alice In Chains introduced me to Randy and they excitedly told me about a new band that they were working on together. Inez had always told me that Randy and I would get along great…and he was right. The moment Randy found out that my father also grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico we were instant pals. Shortly after that the Rock World was reading his obituary.

Photographed with my old Canon AE1 Program and a cheap, no name 70mm-210mm f 5.6 lens. Shot on Kodak Ektachrome film.

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