Heavy metal singer Ronnie James Dio died from stomach cancer in 2010.
Fast forward seven years, and fans will be able to catch him on tour.
While the singer himself will not personally return to the stage, his hologram will soon embark on the "Dio Returns" world tour. The idea — part of a trend that has brought the likes of Tupac Shakur's and Michael Jackson to the stage — is the brainchild of hologram company Eyellusion, and the singer's widow and former manager, Wendy Dio.
"After several meetings, we agreed to make a hologram of Ronnie, and made a debut at the Wacken Festival in Germany in August 2016," said Dio, who is president of Niji Entertainment Group. "After receiving a great response we decided to tour."
Virtual images of deceased musicians have been used before in live performances, as in the case of Tupac's 2012 appearance at Coachella, 16 years after his death. Yet most of those have been one-off performances.
The "Dio Returns" tour will travel the world and may include as many as 100 dates. That makes it a far more complicated venture than a single festival appearance. If successful, the tour could create a new template for departed artists to return to the concert stage via hologram.
"You're never going to make everyone happy," said Leslie Richin, social media editor at Billboard and Spin. "But if the demand is there, and the approval is there, we will certainly see more holograms touring in the future."