Holy Diver
by Dio

Album: Holy Diver (1983)
Charted: 72
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  • At its surface, this song is about Satan, and his descent to Hell (his "dive"). But according to Dio, there's a lot more to it, and the main character isn't really The Devil. "The song 'Holy Diver' is really about a Christ-figure, who on another place, not Earth, has done exactly the same as we've apparently experienced or were supposed to have experienced on Earth: dying for the sins of man so that man can start again and be cleansed and do it properly," he told Sam Dunn for the film Metal: A Headbanger's Journey. "So, the same thing happened on this other far-distant planet, and all the people on this planet are calling him the Holy Diver because he's about to go to another world to do what he did to the first: absolve them from their sins by having himself killed. And the people are saying to him, 'Don't go,' with innuendos of tigers and stripes and hearts and being eaten. It was meant to show just how selfish humanity is, that this one form of humanity on this one world said, 'No, don't go down there and save anybody else. Stay here, we need you, you are ours.'"
  • Dio is Ronnie James Dio, the replacement vocalist for Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath and the original lead singer in the band Rainbow. His solo career was far less successful than Ozzy's, and there was some animosity between the two, but when Dio died of cancer on May 16, 2010, Ozzy released a statement saying: "I was very saddened to hear of the passing of Ronnie James Dio. Metal has truly lost one of its greatest voices."
  • This song is an expression of Dio's rebellion against his Catholic upbringing, which he felt distorted the message of the religion. Instead of teaching by love, the nuns would keep order by smacking the kids with rulers and telling them they would go to Hell if they didn't behave.
  • The lyrics deal specifically with Revelations 12:9 where Satan is cast to the earth. The tiger is symbolic of the wild beast that comes out of the sea, as mentioned in Revelations 13:1.
  • The malevolent imagery in this song is something that goes along with the genre. "If you're gonna write a gothic song, you're probably not gonna write it about how your love affair broke up," Dio told Sam Dunn. "So, your subject matter becomes a little bit more narrowed and certainly evil is a great subject - evil is dark, evil is something that we know about but don't understand why it happens, and we don't really ever meet up with the devil. So it's kind of having to use your own imagination. The themes around evil are just so much more cognizant to the music that we make because minor keys are so prevalent in most metal music. It's hard to write a song in an entire minor key and talk about nice things. In my case, I've done it differently. I've always tried to be someone who has warned people that there is good and there is evil, and that you have a choice, and your best choice is probably not to be evil. This is what evil can do to you, this is what evil has done to the people that I know. It depends on your perspective of evil though. I mean, drugs are evil, too much indulgence in bad things is evil. Hanging around with evil people is gonna beget you to be an evil person. These are the themes that I've tried to deal with in a darker way. Not to say that the devil is lurking around the corner - I'm not one of those that goes to that kind of extreme. I think that has been a problem that people have taken metal music to that extreme socially. I have tried never to do that."
  • This song was featured in an episode of South Park where Dio (in crude cartoon form) appears performing at an elementary school dance with a monkey on drums. In the same NME interview, Dio said: "When I heard South Park wanted to use 'Holy Diver‚' I was like No way! You're gonna completely destroy me, I'll be so embarrassed to see it. But they said they wouldn't because they were big fans and they didn't. They were very kind to me - not so much the drummer - but very kind to me! Plus, if you want to be an icon of some kind, you have to be in an episode of South Park." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    DeeTheWriter - Saint Petersburg, Russia Federation, for above 2
  • The album cover depicts Satan whipping a priest with a chain, with the priest shackled and drowning in a turbulent sea. Predictably, this caused some controversy.
  • This was covered, ironically, by the gospel singer Pat Boone on his In a Metal Mood album. Acknowledging the subject matter, the song ends with Pat reciting Psalm 23:4. Dio sang the backup vocals - he thought it was hilarious. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Brett - Edmonton, Canada
  • In June 2009, Dio told the NME: "'Holy Diver' is the metal tune that will not die. For some reason, that album and the song really hit a chord with people. Killswitch Engage did a version of it and I saw them do it at a festival recently where the reaction to their version was wonderful. But it's not something that gets resurrected every once in a while, it's just always there. I guess it's because good songs always work. What usually happens when people in bands meet me for the first time and they're fans is that they'll sing [adopts a self-mocking high pitched voice] 'Hoooly Diiiiiver' at me! It happens all the time and it's very touching."
  • In 1989, Japanese video game company Irem made a game based on this song, featuring a protagonist who resembles Ronnie James Dio. The game was never released outside of Japan. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Douglas - Waterloo, England

Comments: 84

  • Idgaff from GermanyY'all are aware that "riding the tiger" is shooting up heroin, right? The song makes much more sense if you know that fact.
  • Russ Richter from Billings, MtEpistle based Christian theology is actually devil worship. They epistles are not hidden. They're in plane sight and written by only half the apostles and Paul. At John 13:18 Christ says indirectly, as usual, that some of the apostles were chosen and some not. And He said He came "to separate the wheat from the chaff". Thus if the epistles and their puritanical, unrealistic, bigoted, and Satanic evil teachings and theology were correct, it would make no sense for Christ to say "seek and you shall find", "you will know the truth and the truth will set you free", "we know the scripture can't be broken", "heaven and earth may pass away but my words will never pass away", and "Know this! Whoever does not receive the Kingdom of God like a child shall never enter it."

    See Matthew 23:13/Luke 11:52. Those cleverly hidden twin verses prove to those who understand and respect the rules of logic and deductive reasoning that christianity is a 2 level mystery religion and you need a "Key to a House of Knowledge" to enter the second level to unlock the meaning of all the parables and symbolism and to cue you to look up all the obscure and forgotten terms, mainly sadducee, Pharisee, the Amen and the Bright and Morning Star, thus finally providing a logical explanation for Matthew 13:10/Isaiah 6:9.

    Cannabis, whose natural shape is a Hannukah Menorah which comes from the Holy grail shaped Temple Menorah/Golden Lampstand that was seated at the right hand of the ark of the covenant, i.e. at the right hand of the Almighty coming on the clouds of Heaven, is a sacrament in Hinduism which can also can be loosely described as monotheistic Paganism which is who the Amen is at Rev 3:14 first described indirectly at Gen 1:26-7, which is the first palindrome (very significant symbolically - see Matthew 16, Joshua=Jesus in Hebrew) because the Hebrew Old Testament stories were redacted from older, original Pagan Egyptian, Mesopotamian, and Greek Mythological stories and scriptures.

    Look up the identity of the bright and morning star at Rev 22:16 BECAUSE ITS THE PLANET VENUS PAGAN ROMAN GODDESS OF LOVE, BEAUTY, FERTILITY, SEX, AND PROSITUTION AKA LUCIFER THE BRINGER OF LIGHT IN LATIN (for multiple reasons). Read 101 Myths of the Bible by Gary Greenburg President of the Archaeological Society of NY - How Ancient Scribes Invented Biblical History. Joshua = Jesus in Hebrew. Jesus' ministry is supposed to mirror the Book of Joshua and the story of Jericho. You have know the older original Pagan Egyptian Osiris the Good Shepherd ( He's a married adulterer like Zeus not a celibate virgin) to realize the younger Hebrew version of the story is obviously the evil version of the story i.e. the Devil's/SetBeast's version of the story. Knowledge of what is good/right and evil/wrong = a conscience which literally means "with knowledge" in Latin. There's multiple verses in the Old Testament, obviously hidden deliberately, that say God's wrath doesn't last forever because if it did the souls He mad would feint before Him. 1st Century historian records in his histories that the terms Sadducee and Pharisee were actually afterlife theologies in 1st century Judaea with Pharisee being the unbiblical and cruel afterlife theology of the epistles, written by only half the apostles plus Paul, and therefore organized Christianity. Sadducee means belief in no soul and no afterlife theology. The Greek word aionion doesn't have to mean eternal in the White Throne Judgment Parable at Matthew 25, it can also mean "life time enduring" which is the correct and biblical translation.
  • Dio Is God from Ottumwa IowaChristian God is not real. But a very entertaining and adaptable story for market.
  • Elizabeth from Springfield,missouri I find it funny they used Tiger for the beast, because Lyrans ( none Earth being ) who been helping us balance our malicious instincts with our benevolent instincts ( mind and heart ). So we do not feed into the lies by the mulniplating Fallen Dragons ( Dragconians). Both of these beings DNA is some of us. Many more none Earth beings species that in humanity. They are our sStar Seed family. I may sound crazy , but old sounds Unique and do not follow the herd like baby souls.
  • Andresfrd from Colombiahttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8Ln5GW-3as
  • David Cook from Southern CaliforniaMiss Ronnie
  • Gandolph The Priest from Phoenix.I appreciate Dio And Rainbow and just had to know what HOLY DIVER meant. Very interesting. Hey James. I am James also a a Christian Preacher. Did you know that the Roman Catholic Church is so evil that it is mentioned in the Book of The Revelation of Jesus Christ? If you are born again (accept Jesus the Christ as your Saviour) and read the Book of Revelation repeatedly you will find the verse for your self. King James Version Bible of course. All others are censored.
  • Evil Wizard from IndianaThere is a band called Liliac that done a cover of this song. They did an amazing job
  • Kakyoin from EgyptThis song was so good, I thought it punched a hole in my chest.
  • Pucci from FloridaThis song was [Made In Heaven]
  • Mark from SeattleThis may sound a bit weird, and I'm sorry for not getting into the whole nonsensical blackened tiger eyes holy diver room debate ... but I gotta say Heaven and Hell and especially Mob Rules were both basically perfect albums.
  • Joseph from HawaiiI always thought the priest on the cover was chained by a demon for being a 'pedophile priest'. "But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea." -Matthew 18:6 (KJV)
  • Cyril from BulgariaThis song is 100% satanic.
    Just look at the album art and tell me what you see.
    It's sad that so many mainstream bands are satanic...
  • Lester from NycReally like 'The Last in Line' Album much better. Also think 'All the Fools Sailed Away' is one of Ronnie's best.

    I saw RJD (then Ronald James Padanova) play for Elf as an opening act twice at the old Academy of Music on 14th St. in NYC.
  • Cyberpope from Richmond, CanadaWhy post s--t that's blatantly false? Jesus had exactly 40 lashes, not "over 50"; 40 was the maximum; the typical sentence was 39 for a most serious infraction.
  • Luke from Manchester, United KingdomThe lyrics are "you can hide in the sun 'til you see the light, oh we will pray it's alright"
    nothing about "Christ" and Dio was NOT a satanist - get lives, the lot of you.
  • Jeremy from North Hollywood, CaSomeone by the name of Nightrain50 came up with this interpretation on another website, I think he pretty much nailed it.

    Holy Diver is about Jesus Christ's descent into Hades after being crucified.

    1.Holy Diver= Jesus Christ descending into Hades, the realm of the wicked not the holy.

    2.You've been down too long in the midnight sea= Midnight sea is Hades, the absence of God, God is light so this place is void of it.

    3.Oh what's becoming of me= What are you doing here? You don't belong here, this is the realm of the wicked, you are holy, what are you planning to do to me(us)

    4.Ride the tiger= tiger is a symbol for a couple things mainly Jesus Christ, but also followers of Buddha ride tigers to show their supernatural ability to overcome evil, Shiva the destroyer rode a tiger, and also Islam believes tigers punish sinners for God.

    5.You can see his stripes but you know he's clean, Oh don't you see what I mean= Jesus Christ again, by his stripes we are healed, by his blood we are cleansed. Also they(those in hades) can see his stripes(his marks of crucifixion), the marks of a sinner, even though they all know he is clean(innocent)

    6.Gotta get away Holy Diver= You need to leave this place, you don't belong here. You are innocent this is the realm of the wicked.

    7.Shiny diamonds, like the eyes of a cat in the black and blue, something is coming for you= Jesus is a beacon of light in Hades, everyone can see him coming. Cats are a symbol of power and warfare, the black and blue is the absence of light and all encompassing pain. It stands for Hades.

    8.Race for the morning= Run to Jesus Christ he is the morning star, Rev 22:16 "I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star."

    9.You can hide in the sun 'till you see the light, Oh we will pray it's all right= Hide in the son(Jesus Christ) until you see the light.(God the Father is the Light) we'll put our faith in Jesus that he will take us out of this place(hades) and to the light(God)

    10.Gotta get away-get away= we have to get out of here, this place sucks

    11.Between the velvet lies= velvet is gentleness or caution, often concealing strength or determination and a profit or gain beyond what is expected or due. Jesus is the velvet lie. His intentions are not clear. Satan has been fooled, he thought he had won when he had Jesus crucified, in fact he has sealed his own fate. Jesus is here to claim what's his. All the souls of the fallen that will but believe in him can now be saved from Adam until now. Remember all fell short of the glory of God but one(Jesus), this means that all the prophets of the Old Testament were not reaching heaven. Not yet, but they are now.

    12.There's a truth that's hard as steel= Truth is the word of God. Steel is the sword of Jesus's mouth Rev 2:16 Repent of your sin, or I will come to you suddenly and fight against them with the sword of my mouth.

    13.The vision never dies= The vision is the law, Proverbs 29:18 Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained, But happy is he who keeps the law. The law will never die because Jesus has finally fulfilled the law, allowing us to have eternal life with God through him.

    14.Life's a never ending wheel= Death has been defeated. 1st Corinthians 15:56 "The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law." Romans *:2 "For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death."

    15.Holy Diver, You're the star of the masquerade, No need to look so afraid= Jesus played the part of the sacrificial lamb, allowing himself to be crucified for our sins. He was humiliated, mocked, beaten, and crucified when in reality he was God in the flesh, the lion, and could have called down the wrath of the heavens on his enemies. He didn't, he played the part of the masquerade(fooling Satan) allowing himself to fulfill the law and save mankind.

    16.Jump on the tiger= take a leap of faith and believe in Jesus Christ.

    17.You can feel his heart but you know he's mean= Jesus is the Lamb(Love and Forgiveness) be he is also the Lion(he will judge and punish the nonbelievers)

    18. Some light can never be seen= 2 Corinthians 4:18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

    19.Holy Diver, sole survivor, your honor's clean= Jesus Christ the only man to not fall short of the law but instead has fulfilled it. You are innocent, your honor is restored. The resurrection of Jesus Christ and all the souls who believe in him.

    20. Holy Diver, holy diver, never cut in the middle coming after you= To have you garments cut from the waist down or your beard shaven was an insult put on someone who offended to make them appear a fool or as a slave. No one who comes after Jesus will be cut in the middle because our sins are paid in full by Jesus Christ himself.
  • Cj from Desmoines, IaSeriously people,how do you contemplate the meaning of a song with incorrect lyrics? It is not "like the eyes of a cat in the black and blue" That doesn't even make sense!
    It's "like the eyes of a cat in a BLACKENED ROOM" & "the vision never dies, LIKE SOME NEVER ENDING WHEEL" and this song IS a parody (for lack of a better term) of Christ dying. Many of the lyrics in several songs are either Biblical parodies, many specifically referring to the book of Revelations or have Satanic references. Dio was not into drugs. He was however very against religion. Not a proclaimed Satanist, but definitely had a dislike for the Bible, religion, and did not believe Christ was the son of God. Also the phrase is "you can hide in the Son till you see the light, "oh we will PRAISE ARISE" I believe, mocking Christ's resurrection.
    Sorry, just had to get that off my chest, I have seen the same wrong lyrics on other sites as well. As a child of the 80's there were many groups who used satanic symbolism as a ploy. WE definitely could FEEL it in the music. There was a huge difference between the players and the true unbelievers.
  • Kristin from Murrieta, CaAcutally, this song is about Jesus Christ. Referring him as the ''holy diver'' ''You can see his stripes but you know hes clean'' Jesus had over 50 lashes 'Dont you see what i mean?' lyrics like 'we will pray its alright' and Lyrics like '' between the velvet, lies'' The velvet curtain in the bible was the curtain for the jewish pharisees that had killed him. AFter jesus dies it has tourn in two ''Theres a truth as hard as steel''.. ''Shiny diamonds, like the eyes of a cat in the black and blue, something is coming for you'' If you are caught up in worldly possessions, something is coming for you, Look Out! ''Holy Diver You're the star of the masquerade No need to look so afraid. some light can never be seen
  • Jim from West Palm Beach, FlThe guitarist for this album was an unknown named Vivian Campbell. He had some good licks and helped with the songwriting, and also did the 2nd album. Don't know what happened to him after that.
  • Mary Jo from Raleigh, NcI care about Dio. I'm 79 years of age, but I love Ronnie James Dio's singing and the song "Holy Diver." There are several interpretations that could reasonably be made of the lyrics, but the same can be said of much poetry and lyrics whenever they were written. As a singer of classical music at one time, Dio had a voice that could have easily have been trained to sing anything. He was amazing. I only rediscovered Metal last spring (2011), but in the 1980's when my sons were teenagers I liked Judas Priest, I now realize because of Rob Halford's voice.
  • Carrie from Dayton, Ohall of you are so retarded, why would this amazing human being write songs about Ozzy and how in the world does it relate to his retirement, this song came out in 1983 so who knows when it was actually written, probably during the same time he Ozzy was still really rocking it. Who knows what this song is truly about. Did anyone ask Ronnie James Dio?
  • Leon from Chicago, IlThat's not Satan... that's Murray. He's not well known, but you have to know him if you like Dio. He's on other albums like Dream Evil (watching the kid in the bed being haunted by various creatures).

    May one of the best voices in Metal rest in eternal peace.
  • Briny from Beantown, MaThis song is about Ozzy. Ozzy is the Holy Diver. The Midnight Sea is a Bed and Breakfast in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Dio feels Ozzy has been too long in Florida, kicking back and not working very hard. He wants Ozzy to "ride the tiger" meaning get back to work. He says of Ozzy: "You can see his stripes but you know he's clean" meaning Ozzy is capitalizing on his reputation for being a party animal, but in truth he is just a boring family man. "Siny diamonds" (wealth) are like the "eyes of a cat" meaning and "something's coming for you" meaning Ozzy's wealth and security are just an illusion, no one is ever really secure. "Race for the morning, you can hide in teh sun til you see the light" another reference to Ozzy in semi-restirement in Florida. Refrain "Between the velvet lies" the lies of the record companies, "there's a truth as hard as steel" means metal will never be fully coopted as a commercial commodity. "The vision never dies, life's a never-ending wheel" means no matter how hard Ozzy tries to be a successful former star, the muse that drove him to be a great rock singer will always be present, and eventually Ozzy will have to return to work. "You're the star of the masquerade, no need to look so afraid" is a freference to all of Ozzy's album covers, where he looks terrified. "Jump on the tiger, you can feel his heart but you know he's mean" means that Ozzy should get back to work, he can fel what he's supposed to be doing, and defying the muse will result in something bad happening. "Some light can never be seen" refers to people holding up Bic lighters at concerts, it is a dumb idea because the band can;t see them, the spot lights are in their eyes.
  • Chalice The Grail from Portland Oregon, Orcontinued comment number three... sorry for typos.. the tiger is of the exspansive energy to know he is clean is to know he is free of all contractive energy, to know he is hot, heat exspands cold contracts, to know he is mean, and to jump from the tiger, i feel this implies to not become attatched to your own personal intentions, as in jumping off, to say u know he is mean to me says, when we have attained the ability to ride the furociouse tiger of our intentions do so wisely for we just may get attatched to our intention so much and abuse our power. but what do i know, im just a stupid stripper, parodox is all around u, seek the harmony
  • Chalice The Grail from Portland Oregon, Orcontinued comment,,,where one is whipped as punishment for thier sins, to say u can see he is clean to my self implies, he has stripes but it wasnt from a scourging of its wickedness, to get away implies the diver needs to cross from the contractive energy into the exspansive energy, between the velvet lies, everything is a lie but true enlightnment, the truth thats hard as steel, lifes a never ending wheel, to me says to not believe the illusion of this world of life and death, but that our souls are eternal something is coming for u, when one works toward crossing from the contractive energy to the exspansive, the contractive has a built in defnse mechanism to keep u in it, so on and so forth, yin yang the balance, to race for the morning to me implies the morning star, the light of devine love, it isnt light from the sun buit light of love, i see it sometimes myself. in the bible lucifer, whos name translatets to light bearer is referred to as the morning star, but so is jesus christ referred to as the morning star the light of the world, funny uh? me i kinda think its all bull cause to attain enlightenment you gotta forget all this crap, surrender all you have learned
  • Chalice The Grail from Portland Oregon, Ori can only say what the song means yo me. holy diver... a diver is someone who dives into the sea of the unconscienceness, or subconscienceness, to bring to the surface, to the light of conscienceness the secrets of the unknown, being holy would make this particular diver above and separate from all other divers, neing down too long in the mid night sea, oh look whats becoming of me, gives reference that this diver had spent too long, perhaps diving to the deepest hiiden secrets and tghat man was suffering from the divers deeming absence, ride the tiger to me, points toward the Hindu Goddess Kali, who rides a tiger from wich she draws the furociouse power to bring to fruition her intentions, to see his stripes but know he is clean, stripes are given to scour wickedness as in a scourging,
  • Laurent from Manama, BahrainDio stated in many interviews as well as in Martin Popoff's book about Dio that the songs aims at making people think. Is God all good and Evil all bad? In view of what has happened with religion throughout the years, I believe it is absolutely justified to ask the question. And my answer is that Evil is definitively not as bad as people think.
  • Caesar from Corpus Christi, TxI thought the song referred to Priests molesting kids and partaking in porn (vices). In the Video a priest is trying not to get caught after being out all night..(notice sex shop).
  • John from Boston, MaThis is a tricky one, but like most things, the truth is hidden in plain sight. The Holy Diver is YOU. The Bible mentions the word diver in a couple of passages, meaning many and varied. Diverse. Holy Diver's talking about God being in everybody and nobody knowing it. Holy Diver, You're the Star of the Masquerade. Some Light Can Never Be Seen.
  • Jon from Kansas, Angolagood music and vocals but killswitch engage much better at guitar and vocals
  • Anonymous from Nj, NjRonnie James Dio died. It was on May 16, 2010. It was said to be from complications with the treatment he was having for stomach cancer. Ronnie was uhm...interesting...to say the least...
  • Eric from Lorton, VaRIP Ronnie James Dio... 1 of the greatest heavy metal frontmen of all time. ,,/
  • Cookandfry from Edmonton, Abdio originally sang for elf an upstate ny barband before he joined ritchie blackmore,s RAINBOW
  • Rob from Duluth, GaIt's funny to see all these singers who are old dudes now (like me) admitting that the whole evil satan worshiping thing was just a gimmick to sell records. Funny how our parents used to say they were all going straight to hell.
  • Adam from Clinton Township, MiBob, Boca Raton, those are called devil horns. Good song, btw. Dio rocks.
  • Greg from Slidell, Larjd was so much better in this band than he was in black sabbath...im sorry but no one can repace ozzy.him and iommi made sabbath and they just werent as good without him...but it was 4 the better.ozzy was much better after he got kicked out.
  • Musikero18_90 from Vitoria-gasteiz (e.h), Spaini think that the theori of - Skeletim fron New jersey (I supose that NJ means that^^)is the most valoid one, the idea of ride the tiger is to controle the wil beast, not to be controled by him. Tou must leave your belives and fears and being a stergth person of body and mind who controls his own live
  • Xavier from Schenectady, NyI think the Killswitch engage version is better but i do love Dios too
  • Erik Johnson from Chatham, IlI'm sorry Trey Kalamzoo... wow.... anyway, Dio is not reffering to spanish, but latin, and Satan is the holy diver so you contradicted yourself.
  • Austin from Bristow, VaLove this song. Dio is easily one of the most underrated heavy metal bands ever.
  • Trey from Kalamazoo, MtSatan is not on the cover. that's the holy diver. Duh. does anyone notice that God in spanish is "Dios"? So Dio is practically God to Spanish people.
  • Charva from Oreland, PaRonnie James Dio is the most important thing that ever happened to music. This is not an opinion - it is FACT.
    Holy Diver is the greatest album ever made.
    Again, not opinion - FACT.
    Any analysis of the lyrics on this album are unecessary - GOD himself is speaking through Ronnie all through - and you all know it.
  • Beef from Quahog, Risouth park used this on the episode where they have a school dance, i crapped myself laughing when i saw it, i beleive the episode is in season 3
  • Lundin from Stockholm, SwedenAs someone who like most of Dio's songs, I can say this... listen to the music and don't pay too much attention to the lyrics, because they are most of the time just random nonsense about rainbows and dragons...
  • Jason from Denver, CoSomething people may not know is if you turn the DIO logo upside down, it reads DEVIL you have to look closely.....SPOOOOOKY!
  • Br!tt@ny from Florissant, Mowhoa man....i thought killswitch made this song by themselves..i guess i was wrong! never heard it by Dio, but i love the killswitch version... it amazing!!!
  • Zach from Green Bay, Withis songs on grand theft auto: vice city stories and guitar hero: rock the '80s
  • Stewie from Nashville, Tnthis song is used in the episode of "south park" where "dio" performs it
  • Dan from Mexico, MoHey did anybody ever hear Holy DIver Remake By Kllswitch Engage. Its pretty awesome. Just a thought.
  • Rael from Sp, BrazilRide the Tiger is slang for injecting heroin because of the stripes on a syrige, and the drug is clean
    Shiny diamonds is another drug
    Eyes os a cat in the black and blue, are the marks of the injecting
    He compares the religious dive to the experience of heroin
  • Skeletim from Usa, NjThere are two characters in this song: the tiger, and the holy diver. The tiger is the Sun God ("the cat in the blue is coming after you, holy diver") and the holy diver is an ordinary person who sees the hypocrisy of religion ("the velvet lies") and finds himself lost ("in the midnight sea" or darkness). There are "shiny diamonds" or stars as if "the eyes of the cat" were in both "the black and blue" or night sky as well as day. The impulse here is to get away from religion ("something is coming for you") but still seek that guiding light ("race for the morning"). The paradox is quickly realized ("you can hide in the Sun until you see the light"): that which he is running from he is also searching for. So, the conclusion is to "ride," "jump on," mount the tiger, taking personal control of his beliefs and rejecting organized religion. Generally speaking, things are not always what they seem. (Is the demon on the cover drowning the priest, or the priest drowning the demon?) The tiger looks dirty but there is nothing wrong with him. You can feel his love, but don't let your guard down. Finding balance is a recurring theme in Dio's works. The mythology is consistent. In Last in Line "two eyes from the east, is it the angel or the beast? the answer lies between the good and the bad." In Master of the Moon, looking at the "eyes" will "blind you." In I Am "I am like the cat, who always lets you know that I Am I Am..." (Note: the Sun rises in the east, has a blinding light, and is the basis of worship in many major religions throughout history including Christianity)
  • Jer from Round Lake, Ilyour a poser if u like this song just cause its on guitar hero. and also this song is not about a scooby doo epsdoe retard its about what it says, satan.
  • Lee from Brigg, Englandits on guitar heros rocks the 80s it kicks ass nuf said ( sorry about typos )
  • Billy from Pittsburgh, PaThis song is actually about Episode #2 of the late 60's - early 70's cartoon series "Scooby-Doo, Where are you!". In the episode, the residential pothead, "shag" and his loyal mutt, "scoob" are startled by the appearance of a ghost-like figure coming out of the "midnight sea". A local underground band, Dio, was called upon to write this epic ballad for the chase scene in the cartoon. The song was so popular with the fans of Scooby-Doo that the writer's, Hannah-Barbarra, after recieving thousands and thousands of requests, contacted Warner Bros. Records. Warner gave Dio an opportunity to compose a record. Though none of the other songs were as comercially popular as "Holy Diver" they managed to go Platinum within their first year. The song is a playable Track in the popular Playstation 2 game, Guitar Hero Encore Rock's the 80's.
  • Ben from Poopsicle, TnO macgyver! its been 12 seasons ince uve been on tv! oh what is becoming of thee?....lol
  • Christian from Toms River, Njisn't this song about satan coming to earth?
  • Jacob Huffman from Rancho Cucamonga, CaChris from surgoinsville If he is the worst musician of all time then why are you even loking up a songfact for him really anyway AWESOME i saw dio with sabbath at the forum KICK BUT
  • Jqy from Houston, Uti hate you bob and your full of sh*t chris
  • Oliver from Hamburg, GermanyDio's voice is one of the greatest in many respect.
  • Joni from New York, NyLoved Ronnie James Dio singing in Rainbow.
  • Koki from Nogales, Azdio just rocks
  • Douglas from WaterlooI wonder why noone else here though this song might be about drug addiction ... "you can see his stripes but you know he's clean", i.e. he still has the marks of using drugs, especially heroin, but no longer injects.
  • Cory from Seaford, DeUh... who makes these songfacts? Because I;m more than sure that this song is about some guy saving people from hell. Maybe it's just me. Also, chris and bob are completely wrong, because Dio is one of my favorite rock bands of all time, and i certainly care about what they say. anyway, i think Holy diver is a great song, but i really like The Last in Line and One Night in the City better.
  • Maidmetal Queen from Shirley, NyThis song is about Dante's Inferno.
    I recently wrote a song with my band about purgatory and used this book as a reference.
    The cryptic chatter in this song reminds me of how Dante got lost in the Dark Woods and had to confront the 3 beasts. One of them was a Leopard which in my opinion is "The Tiger". I think the "Mid-night Sea" is the Well on the last level of hell, where the Devil is waiting and then Dante see the light and returns. Just a thought.
  • Ace from Heavy Metal, Inchris from surgoinsville you suck dio rocks
  • Nathan from Perth, AustraliaSigh, there is no mutual hatred between Dio and Ozzy. When Dio was working with Sabbath, Dio and Tony Iommi had disagreements but it was nothing to do with Ozzy. In fact in his Stand Up and Shout anthology Dio says that he wrote "King Of Rock and Roll" for Ozzy. Don't you feel silly?
  • Dave from San Jose, Ca"ride the tiger" is a book by the fascist philosopher Julius Evola. I'm not insinuating that Dio is a fascist, but his lyrics contain many references to fascism, Nietzsche, etc. probably a coincidence.
  • Kurtis Borne from Omaha, Newhy did people allow pat boone to do that?
  • Chris from Philadelphia, PaPat Burrell of the Philadelphia Phillies uses Holy Diver as his theme song when he comes up to bat. Many baseball experts (me) have deemed it the greatest baseball player theme song ever.
  • AnonymousStraight up kick some but rock n roll! Mike C From Pottstown Pa
  • Dale from Rumford, Meif you hate dio bob and chris thn write on the coments?
  • Ronnie James Dio from Tarzana, CaI do, Bob. So do many others.
  • Chris from Surgoinsville, TnI think Dio is the worst musician of all time
  • Monkey Man from Atlanta, MdI think holy diver isn't that good compared to straight throught the heart but that is my opinion and i really enjoy listening to rainbow and dio
  • Emmeline from Plymouth, Englandwhats all the stuff about "ride the tiger"??
  • Dee from Indianapolis, InAn album that should be in everyones collection. The cover itself is worth having, but with songs like "Rainbow in the Dark" which you can't top and "Holy Diver" it's music you can't deny.
  • Garcia from Vb, CanadaThis song asks one question: How can we be sure that the priest is the good guy? He might as well be the bad one.
  • Trent from Carlinville, IlNo one cared because Dio is awesome and who would stand up to a legend who vocals are sheer power that no one else could even dream about having.
  • Bora from Istanbul, TurkeyAs i heard from a friend of mine; the "Holy diver" is a man that was executed by a middle-age type execution. In 17'th Century(in the time of the men with the black,high-top hats), when people think that a man is a witch, they punnish him as: they tie a heavy stone to his leg with a rope, and trow him in to the sea. They wait there and, if the man can save himself and be back to the surface, they were sure that he was a witch, and then kill him there. But if he can't save from there and be back to the surface, the people know that he wasn't a witch! But in both situation the man dies;) So my friend told me that ,DIO tells about a man that wanted to be executed by that way... Dunno if it's true:)
  • Bob from Boca Raton, FlDio started that thing with his fingers that a lot of metal bands do..you know, that thing...that sign.
  • Siri from Milwaukee, Wiactually, in dio's anthology he himself said that holy diver was a christlike figure of another dimension. he planned on diving into hell to save his people, but the selfish jackassesdidnt want him to leave them
  • Rocky from Hillsdale, NjThe demon who is whipping the priest is not Satan-- it is Dio's mascot, a monster by the name of Murray (see also the covers of Dio's albums "Last In Line" and "Dream Evil")
  • Bob from Levittown, PaThe only reason the album cover didn't cause too much controversy was because it was made by Dio. Honestly, ask yourself a very simple question: "Who really cares about Dio or what he does?"
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