Great White - Great White seemed to ooze success and talent from the minute they were formed in Los Angeles in 1981. Their brand of no frills or gimmicks blues /rock went down a storm and they were signed to EMI Records in 1984, staying with the label until 1992. This album was taken from two concerts, one in California in July 1993 and the other at the LA House of Blues in 1994. A good test for a band is whether they can reproduce live what they do in the studio. Great White get ten out of ten - they really have a special talent. They released an excellent new album last year called "Can't get there from here" as well as a tribute to Led Zeppelin called "Great Zeppelin". Essential listening.

Great White 
Great White - Step on You, from "Psycho City" in 1992, their 9th album. Great White are another outfit that are regularly featured on the show and in these pages, so we won't repeat their history again here. What we will tell you is that this album was their final offering for Capitol Records. It also featured Dave "The Beast" (Gary Moore, Black Sabbath, etc ) Spitz on bass. The next album, "Sail Away", which came out in 1994 on RCA Records, was influenced by Julian Barnes' novel "The History of the World in Ten and a half Chapters". As far as we're aware, this great Los Angeles based outfit are still around. 

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Biography by David Jeffries
While one infamous nightclub show eclipses their previous achievements, the hard rock/heavy metal band Great White would much rather you remember their Grammy nomination for Best Hard Rock Performance, the over six million records they sold, and their double platinum album ...Twice Shy.

Formed in the early '80s by vocalist Jack Russell and guitarist Mark Kendall, Great White were regulars of the L.A. club scene, playing their Led Zeppelin- and AC/DC-influenced metal to a quickly growing fan base. Local radio play and more gigging helped sell 20,000 copies of their independent releases, the Out of the Night EP and the full-length Shot in the Dark, both released in 1983.

The EMI label took notice, signed the band, and released its self-titled, major-label debut a year later. Shot in the Dark would be reissued by the label in 1987, the same year as the new album Once Bitten... appeared with the hit single "Rock Me." The album went platinum, but 1989's ...Twice Shy took things even further thanks in no small part to the massive success of the single "Once Bitten Twice Shy," a cover of a Mott the Hoople song written by Mott member Ian Hunter.

Long tours with Ratt and a co-headlined tour with Tesla kept the band out of the studio until 1991 when the polished Hooked appeared with two different album covers, one a provocative side shot of a mermaid hanging off an anchor in mid-air and one less scandalous with the mermaid still submerged. Hooked went gold while their 1992 follow-up, Psycho City, sold less, leading to EMI saying goodbye to the band with the 1993 compilation The Best of Great White.

Sail Away from 1994 found the band on Zoo, while 1996's Let It Rock was released by Imago. A live set of cover tunes featuring the work of their favorite band appeared as Great Zeppelin: A Tribute to Led Zeppelin, released by Cleopatra in 1999. That same year, Can't Get There from Here on the Portrait label gave fans their first taste of Russell's new writing partnership with longtime friend and former Night Ranger member Jack Blades. Another set of covers formed the 2002 Cleopatra album Recover, but this time the choices were surprising, with the Cult's "Love Removal Machine" and X's "Burning House of Love" getting the Great White treatment.

Forgotten by the mainstream, they were brought back into the limelight when pyrotechnics used by the band sparked a fire in a Rhode Island nightclub on February 20, 2003, killing 100 people, including the band's guitarist, Ty Longley. The 2004 reissue of Recover drew some media attention, since the Horizon label had given it a new and now morbid title, Burning House of Love. Trials concerning the fire continued on into 2006 as questions concerning who authorized the pyrotechnics were being investigated. 

 

Audie Desbrow
Mark Kendall
Michael Lardie
Tony Montana
Alan Niven
Jack Russell
Sean McNabb
Gary Holland
Ty Longley
Matthew Johnson
 

Whitesnake
Thin Lizzy
Tesla
Ratt
Joe Perry
Jimmy Page
Mötley Crüe
Guns N' Roses
Faster Pussycat
Dokken
Alice Cooper
Damn Yankees
Fastway
Keel
Van Halen
Y&T
Winger
The Runaways
David Lee Roth
Rainbow
London Quireboys

If you have any contribution to make to this band or something to add, email me - Japie Marais.

 

 

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Great White - 1984 - Great White - 2/5

Great White - 1987 - Once Bitten... - 4/5

Great White - 1987 - Shot in the Dark - 3/5

Great White - 1989 - ...Twice Shy - 4/5

Great White - 1990 - Live In London - 3.5/5

Great White - 1991 - Hooked - 4/5

Great White - 1992 - Psycho City - 3/5

Great White - 1994 - Sail Away - 3/5

Great White - 1996 - Let It Rock - 2.5/5

Great White - 1996 - Stage - 2/5

Great White - 1999 - Can't Get There From Here - 3/5

Great White - 1999 - Great Zeppelin, A Tribute to Led Zeppelin - 2/5

Great White - 2001 - Gallery - 4/5

Great White - 2002 - Recover - 3.5/5

Great White - 2002 - Thank You Goodnight - 4/5

Rating

 

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