Dion Francis Dimucci

EXCITING NEWS FOR THE BUDDY HOLLY EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATION.

We are honoured and thrilled a very special music legend is joining our other great International artists and musicians as an Ambassador and Lifetime guitar recipient.

The original New York Street Poet and Rock & Roll Hall of Famer, Dion as all Buddy/Cricket fans know, was one of the last to talk to Buddy,Richie and Big Bopper before they boarded the plane that led to the fatal tragedy.

It’s appropriate therefore,that the guitar Maria Elena will present to Dion will be “THAT MAKES IT TOUGH”,one of the final songs Buddy wrote and recorded in their NY apartment.

A VERY WARM WELCOME INTO TBHEF FAMILY DION

YO!

Dion and his music will always represent a special time and place… a moment when a song could mean so much and a singer could sum up what it means to be young, in love and on top of the world.

Yet Dion is more than simply a cherished memory of a more innocent time. A singer, songwriter and performer of extraordinary versatility, range and resonance, Dion is fashioning music as relevant and revealing today as in the heydays of the 50’s when, along with a handful of other innovators, he defined rock ‘n’ roll for a generation.

That mastery began at a very early age on the mean streets of the Bronx, New York. It was in the bars and on the street corners of his Bronx neighbourhood that Dion’s musical skill and style really began. R & B, blues, doo-wop and rock ‘n’ roll all influenced his approach to music, but it was country’s great singer songwriter Hank Williams who first sparked Dion’s singing ambitions. Whatever the reason, Williams’ hard driving lonesome sound attracted the city boy. By age twelve, Dion had collected a hundred of Hank’s singles and could sing as many by heart. It was his surprising feel for pure country that led to his first professional appearance on Paul Whiteman’s radio and television shows, singing Jambalaya.

Dion’s natural affinities and abilities were further honed on the stoops and on the street corners of Cartona Avenue, where he rounded up other local singers, inventing acapella licks. Then in 1957 he brought the best of the neighbourhood rockers together, Freddy Milano, Angelo D’Aleo and Carlo Mastrangelo to form Dion & The Belmonts, named after Belmont Avenue, in the heart of the Bronx.

“I Wonder Why” was Dion’s first hit with The Belmonts and over the next two years the group earned a reputation not only for topping the charts but for creating some of the most vital and exciting doo-wop music on the American scene. With songs such as “A Teenager In Love” and “Where Or When”, Dion & The Belmonts earned their place in the history books, while the group’s pioneering role in the development of rock ‘n’ roll underscored their enduring accomplishments. A national sensation, they toured extensively and were featured artists on the star-crossed Winter Dance Party, the tour that took the lives of Buddy Holly and other musical greats. Dion was, in fact, scheduled to fly in the fateful plane that went down “the day the music died”.

But the vitality of the music lived on when Dion , venturing out as a solo artist in 1960, racked up a string of #1 hits that many still consider to be the best of that, or any other, era. Over an incredible four year run Dion cut one quintessential rock classic after another, from the rollicking “Runaround Sue” to the driving “Lovers Who Wander” to the anthemic “The Wanderer”- it was an unparalleled musical feat that elevated him to the top ranks of recording artists. As the first rock and roll artist ever signed to Columbia Records, he continued his streak with such smashes as “Ruby Baby”, “Donna The Prima Donna” and “Drip Drop”. When not in the recording studio, he could be found frequenting Greenwich Village, New York, listening to roots music, the blues, folk styling’s that were shortly to sweep the music scene.

In 1968, Dion had matured as an artist, a more contemplative songwriter and performer and also discovered some hard-won answers and, in the process, found new reasons for living. And singing. That same year he shot to the top of the charts once again with “Abraham, Martin and John”, a song that was as much an anthem for that era as his early hits had been in theirs. What followed was a string of acclaimed Lps including such moving and deeply personal offerings as “Sit Down Old Friend”, “You’re Not Alone” and “Sanctuary Suite For Late Summer”. The titles told all: Dion had come of age.

Suring the following fifteen years, Dion devoted himself and his music to folk, blues and Gospel, again earning a reputation as an innovator. He also recorded a series of albums that reflected an enduring faith in God, and was nominated for a Grammy in 1985.

Through his intent on always looking forward, it was the repeated requests of friends and fans that he agreed to do a concert of his HIT material at Radio City Music Hall in New York City in the summer of 1987. It was an historic music event, one that tied up loose ends of a legacy and, in many ways, freed Dion to celebrate both his past and his future.

The Radio City shows were also the beginning of yet another career phase for Dion, leading to a series of special appearances, including a 1988 fundraiser for homeless medical relief. There he shared the stage with such renowned Dion fans as Bruce Springsteen, Paul Simon and Lou Reed, all of whom cited the originator of the Bronx blues as one of their prime influences.

A subsequent autobiography titled ‘The Wanderer’ published by William Morrow, and his recent induction into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame further highlighted Dion’s contribution to the state of the musical art , helping, at the same time, to set the stage for his active return to recording. “ Yo Frankie”, “Dream On Fire” and “Rock and Roll Christmas” are a collection of CD’s showcasing the inexhaustible creativity and sheer exuberance that has made this artist one of rock music’s most authentic legends.

Today Dion’s songs grow more importantly and valuable to his fans, himself and to a new generation of believers. His works being reissued on Sony, Warner Brothers, Rhino, Ace Records and Capitol.

His songs, his music are continually impacting people worldwide.

DION’S ALBUM DISCOGRAPHY

PRESENTING DION AND THE BELMONTS LAURIE 2002
ALONE WITH DION LAURIE 2004
WISH UPON A STAR LAURIE 2006
RUNAROUND SUE LAURIE 2009
LOVERS WHO WANDER LAURIE 2012
DION’S GREATEST HITS LAURIE 2013
LOVE CAME TO ME LAURIE 2015
TOGETHER ON RECORDS LAURIE 2016
SINGS TO SANDY LAURIE 2017
15 MILLION SELLERS LAURIE 2019
MORE GREATEST HITS LAURIE 2022
RUBY BABY COLUMBIA 8810
WONDER WHERE I’M BOUND COLUMBIA 97773
TOGETHER AGAIN ABC
DION LAURIE 2047
DION’S GREATEST HITS COLUMBIA 31942
SIT DOWN OLD FRIEND WARNER BROS 1826
YOU’RE NOT ALONE WARNER BROS 1872
SANCTUARY WARNER BROS 1945
SUITE FOR LATE SUMMER WARNER BROS 2642
REUNION WARNER BROS 2664
BORN TO BE WITH YOU (U.K) PHIL SPECTOR INT’L
TEENAGER IN LOVE (TV PACKAGE) JUKE BOX RECORDS
STREETHEART WARNER BROS 2954
RETURN THE WANDERER LIFESONG JZ 35356
FIRE IN THE NIGHT (UNRELEASED) LIFESONG
INSIDE JOB DAYSPRING 4022
ONLY JESUS DAYSPRING 4027
I PUT AWAY MY IDOLS DAYSPRING 4109
DION AND THE BELMONTS ARISTA AL9 8206
SEASONS DAYSPRING 412901 5
KINGDOM IN THE STREETS MYRRH 682106 4
DION AND THE BELMNTS (REISSUE RHINO 70228
VELVET AND STEEL DAYSPRING
YO FRANKIE ARISTA AL8549
DION BRONX BLUES: THE COLUMBIA RECORDINGS COLUMBIA 46972
DREAM ON FIRE VISION
ROCK ‘N’ ROLL CHRISTMAS THE RIGHT STUFF
BRONX BLUES II COLUMBIA

DIONS CHART SINGLES

DION & THE BELMONTS

I WONDER WHY 1958 LAURIE 3013
NO ONE KNOWS 1958 LAURIE 3015
DON’T PITY ME 1958 LAURIE 3021
A TEENAGER IN LOVE ** 1959 LAURIE 3027
EVERY LITTLE THING I DO 1959 LAURIE 3035
A LOVER’S PRAYER 1959 LAURIE 3035
WHERE OR WHEN ** 1960 LAURIE 3052
WHEN YOU WISH UPON A STAR 1960 LAURIE 3052

DION

LONELY TEENAGER * 1960 LAURIE 3070
LITTLE MISS BLUE 1960 LAURIE 3070
HAVIN’ FUN 1961 LAURIE 3081
RUNAROUND SUE ** 1961 LAURIE 3110
THE WANDERER ** 1961 LAURIE 3115
THE MAJESTIC 1961 LAURIE 3115
LOVERS WHO WANDER ** 1962 LAURIE 3123
(I WAS) BORN TO CRY 1962 LAURIE 3123
LITTLE DIANE * 1962 LAURIE 3134
LOVE CAME TO ME* 1962 LAURIE 3145
RUBY BABY ** 1963 COLUMBIA 42662
SANDY 1963 LAURIE 3153
THIS LITTLE GIRL 1963 COLUMBIA 42776
COME GO WITH ME 1963 LAURIE 3171
BE CAREFUL OF STONES THAT YOU THROW 1963 COLUMBIA 42810
DONNA THE PRIMA DONNA * 1963 COLUMBIA 42852
DRIP DROP * 1963 COLUMBIA 42917
JOHNNY B. GOODE 1964 COLUMBIA 43096
ABRAHAM, MARTIN AND JOHN ** 1968 LAURIE 3464
PURPLE HAZE 1969 LAURIE 3478
BOTH SIDES NOW 1969 LAURIE 3495
YOUR OWN BACKYARD 1970 WARNER BROS 7401
THE NIGHT STOOD STILL 1989 ARISTA

** Denotes TOP 5
* Denotes TOP 10