GREAT WHITE guitarist Mark Kendall has ruled out a reunion with Jack Russell, saying that he and his bandmates have "totally moved down the road."
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.
Speaking about a possible renewed collaboration with his onetime friend, Kendall told The Metal Voice (hear audio below): "I think that you would have to go see Jack and then come back and ask me again… I'll just put it this way: I'm really proud of the career we had together. It was an awesome run. I don't think we got in any arguments — maybe one or two over probably maybe something stupid. We were brothers. I don't wanna speak about anything negative toward him. I'm glad he's able to at least perform, and that's fine. But we've just totally moved down the road. We just wanna enjoy ourselves and let him enjoy himself. And we gave him a way to make a living, to call himself JACK RUSSELL'S GREAT WHITE. There's no loss of love for Jack at all… I don't wanna get negative and put any stain on our career together, because it was a blessing."
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.
Last year, 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.
The Ilous-led GREAT WHITE released two albums, 2012's "Elation" and 2017's "Full Circle", before Terry was shown the door.
This past July, Russell told SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation" that he will "always love Mark. Me and Mark started this together, and we have had some of the most amazing moments of our lives together," he explained. "We accomplished things that people rarely accomplish. And we set out to accomplish what we set out to do. There were a lot of moments that we shared that are priceless. And that will always resonate in my soul. I'll always have a love for him, no matter what goes down. And yeah, I miss him — I miss him in my life. We were really close.
"For me, I'm over all the… whatever," he continued. "I'm not upset or mad or anything else. I take my part of it — I own that. And yeah, I miss him. I miss Mark. I always will. I wish that we could be friends, at least on a social level. At least to be able to call him and go, 'Hey, how're you doing, man? How's the band? How's the family?'"
Last year, Desbrow told ListenIowa that there was never any discussion about possibly bringing Jack back after Terry's exit from GREAT WHITE. "Not at all," he said. "We've already moved on from that. We've gone through a lot of stuff with that over the years, and the fact that he sued us in federal court for the name, and we spent a lot of time and money, you just don't return from that. People tell me that they've seen his latest shows, and it's just hard to look at because his health isn't as good as it could be. We've got a really grueling schedule, and it's hard enough for me, and I'm semi-healthy. [Laughs] I couldn't imagine someone in his condition doing what we're doing. We did shows with him toward the end, and he was in and out of a wheelchair and crutches, had to be carried up stairs, was falling asleep onstage. It just got old. It's a business, and we have families to support and mortgages to pay. You can't go to work messed up 24/7 and still be able to work there."