JACK RUSSELL Says He Has Been Sober 'Almost A Year And A Half'
December 28, 2016
In a brand new interview with All Music & All Bands: Local, National, Worldwide, former GREAT WHITE and current JACK RUSSELL'S GREAT WHITE singer Jack Russell offered an update on his health status, seven years after coming back from near death with a perforated bowel and pulmonary embolism. He said: "My health has been quite well, actually. My wife and several friends help me stay in the best shape I can. I have been sober almost a year and a half. The last time I drank, I was in a coma for five days. I, like my good friend Jani [Lane, late WARRANT singer], continued trying to fool myself that I was okay drinking. After coming out of a coma, my doctor told me that if I drank one more time, I would die. Not that I might die, or could die, but that I absolutely would kill myself. I had no choice. Either live or die. I want to live."
Russell also confirmed that he has not spoken with any of his former bandmates in GREAT WHITE, almost five years since he sued them over their continued use of the GREAT WHITE name after the singer had taken a leave of absence from the band for medical reasons.
"Regardless of everything that has happened, I still, and always will, miss the friendship Mark Kendall [guitar] and I once had," Jack said. "Maybe someday..."
Earlier this year, Russell spoke to the "Music Mania" podcast about the 2015 near-death episode which finally convinced him to get sober. He said: "I went on a binge and I drank, like, Mai Tais in, like, twenty minutes. And I kept falling off the bar stool. [And they told me], 'Hey, dude, we love you here, but you've gotta go. Or else we'll call the cops.' So Don Dokken, who was with me, took me to my boat and dropped me off. And my wife was just furious. And she put me in bed, and the next morning I wouldn't wake up... I was in a coma from drinking too much. The doctor told me when I woke up, 'If you drink again, your liver's gonna shut down and you're gonna die.' And I went, 'Okay.' So I'm not gonna take the chance. I'm doing good right now. My body's in great shape. I've been working out. I've been running. I've been… stuff I thought I could never do again after all my accidents. I just took care of myself, got some muscle on me, and I'm back on stage doing what I used to do. It's great."
It was revealed in August 2013 that the current GREAT WHITE band — which consists of Kendall, Scott Snyder (bass),Audie Desbrow (drums),Michael Lardie (guitar, keyboards) and Terry Ilous (lead vocals) — would continue to use the name GREAT WHITE and Russell would perform under the name JACK RUSSELL'S GREAT WHITE.
JACK RUSSELL'S GREAT WHITE's debut album, "He Saw it Comin'" (originally titled "The Gauntlet"),will be released on January 27, 2017 via Frontiers Music Srl. The record features Russell alongside former GREAT WHITE bassist-turned-guitarist Tony Montana (as a guitar player and keyboardist),Dan McNay (MONTROSE) on bass, Robby Lochner (FIGHT) on guitar and Dicki Fliszar (BRUCE DICKINSON) on drums.