Ex-GREAT WHITE Singer JACK RUSSELL: ‘I Don’t Understand Why MARK KENDALL Hasn’t Called Me In All These Years’
Russell exited GREAT WHITE in December 2011 after he was unable to tour with the group due a series of injuries, including a perforated bowel and a shattered pelvis. Jack largely blamed these injuries on his alcohol and painkiller addictions as well as the prednisone drug he was prescribed.
In a new chat with the “Ouch, You’re On My Hair” podcast, Russell stated about Kendall (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “I would love to see Mark again and talk to him again. It’s been many, many years. I have no grudges; I never have. And I never had any ill will towards him. I understand why they didn’t want me back in the band. I get it — I was a total mess. I wouldn’t want me back in the band either if I was them. But the whole slander thing was the only thing that really upset me. It was, like, ‘C’mon, really?’ It’s all the, ‘Oh, I would never do a show with that guy. He’s a total asshole,’ blah blah blah blah, ‘but we wish him all the best.’ [Laughs] Okay. What is it?
“Like I said, I really don’t have any mean spirit [in me about it]. I joke around a lot about it. But if he called me tomorrow, I’d like to sit down and talk to him for hours.
“The unfortunate thing about the relationship — or lack thereof — is there’s only memories that him and I have together,” Jack added. “There’s only stories that we can recount to each other. I can’t tell somebody else, ‘Hey, remember when we did that?’ Mark and I have so many memories that I can only talk to him about. So there’s a good portion of my life I can’t discuss with the person that was most integral in it. So it’s a sad situation.
“I don’t understand why he hasn’t called me in all these years. I don’t have his number, or I’d call him. I tried for years to call him, and he never picked up. So, what are you gonna do?”
Last month, Kendall seemed open to the idea of reconnecting with Russell, telling SIN CITY REJECTS‘ Jason Green: “If I saw [Jack] somewhere, I wouldn’t run away or anything. I don’t think we would get in a fight. There’s never been any mean intentions or bad thoughts or anything like that. Obviously, going through the court thing was a complete nightmare. I mean, it was just horrible.”
Pressed about whether he thinks he will ever share the stage with Jack again, Mark said: “God, man. That’s a tough question. I don’t know that that would ever come up. I’m not sure.
“My only concern is his health and stuff like that,” he added. “We were friends long enough to where, just put the music away, forget the music. Let’s talk about how you’re doing, how you’re holding up, buddy. So, as far as the music goes, I don’t even care about that.”
Russell sued his onetime bandmates in 2012 over their continued use of the GREAT WHITE name after Jack had taken a leave of absence from the band for medical reasons. A short time later, Russell was countersued by Kendall, rhythm guitarist/keyboardist Michael Lardie and drummer Audie Desbrow, claiming the vocalist’s self-destructive behavior was damaging the GREAT WHITE name (they also alleged he was charging promoters less for his own touring version of GREAT WHITE). The parties settled in July 2013 without going to trial, with Russell now performing as JACK RUSSELL’S GREAT WHITE while the others are continuing as GREAT WHITE.
Nearly three years ago, GREAT WHITE announced the addition of new singer Mitch Malloy to the group’s ranks. He replaced Terry Ilous, who was fired from the band in July 2018.
This past January, Russell told “Rocking With Jam Man” that his split with GREAT WHITE “was very emotional. It still hurts a lot,” he said. “Maybe it’s like a divorce, ’cause you get to be brothers when you’re playing in a band together, especially for many, many years. And then when that ends, it can be very traumatic on your spirit. That’s what it was like when I split up with my old guys. That was really, really difficult. But what are you gonna do? You’ve gotta kind of go with the flow and just move on.”