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Review by The Rocker James West 
Photos by The Rocker Chic Danette West

The Rocker Chic and I have settled in quite nicely into our new Rocker Retreat in Arkansas!  It’s been great to spend time with my family and childhood friends while making new memories to also cherish.  Part of hanging with the FAM includes making a little drive to nearby Cherokee Casino in Roland, Oklahoma to engage in some “gaming activity”.  While there my “ever-inquisitive” Rocker Chic wife Danette noticed a sign “FREE GREAT WHITE CONCERT” which happened to be scheduled THE NEXT DAY!  Without hesitation our immediate reaction was- WE’RE THERE DUDE!  We invited my Rocker-Spawn daughter April and my soon to be Rocker Son-In-Law Boyce to also join in the fun and games at the Cherokee.


To describe the music of Great White is to define great elements that create great rock and roll; great rhythm with hard-driving riffs with drums that offer a little swing to the beat; great soaring solos anchored to a thumping bass creating a heartbeat to the song, and of course, great vocals that pierce into your soul…


Great White formed in Los Angeles in 1977. The band peaked with several albums during the mid-to-late 1980s, including the platinum-selling records Once Bitten (1987) and ...Twice Shy (1989), and those albums' singles "Rock Me" and "Once Bitten, Twice Shy" received considerable airplay through radio and MTV.  Great White has sold over 10 million albums worldwide, has six Top 100 Billboard hits, nine Top 200 Billboard albums, two platinum albums, and clocked the top of MTV four times.  They continued to release new material into the 1990s. The band is named after both the shark with the same name, and Mark Kendall’s former stage nickname!


To experience their hits live in concert- “Rock Me,” “Mista Bone,” “Save Your Love,” “House of Broken Love,” and “Lady Red Light” among others in a small bar-type setting is a no-brainer; especially when it’s FREE… Yes I said FREE!

This was by far the easiest concert to get to:  Walk in the front entrance about 50 feet and YOU’RE THERE!  The stage was actually right behind the bar area on a platform for easy viewing. For easy reference-- It’s like Elf On A Shelf for Rock Bands! Lol


The bar sitting area in front of our standing room only section was reserved for “special hotel guests”, and my only concern is that there wasn’t a designated “pit” area for fans to stand right up at the stage.  We were a little distracted by watching non-fans engaged in conversation and alcohol consumption, and even Great White actually asked to open up some room in front of the stage for fans but to no avail.  But what do you expect for FREEEEE!!!


That didn’t stop the energy from Band and Fan, and the excitement of seeing Great White for the first time!  Plus, I was in Heaven already with being able to enjoy the event with the Rocker Chic, Rocker Spawn April, and Rocker Son In Law To Be Boyce!

Great White is Mark Kendall (guitar), Michael Lardie (guitar, keyboards), Audie Desbrow (drums), Scott Snyder (bass), and Andrew Freeman (vocals).


 “Andrew brings another vocal perspective, a different grit in his delivery,” lead guitarist, Mark Kendall said. “We’re so proud of our past. We’re humbled that our fans have stood by us for all these years – Andrew being here now is the next chapter. We couldn’t be more excited for fans to hear him sing the hits, and help us continue to forge ahead.”

Andrew’s voice fits perfectly with the songs, as I immediately noticed when Great White started their 14-song set full of hits and rarities.  Part Robert Plant, Part Jack Russell, and Part Robin Zander bests describes my take on the new singer, which isn’t a bad combo of talent at all!


I was very impressed with everyone in this incarnation of Great White, but for me the main guy to see and hear was Mark Kendall!  For a 66 year old Mark still knows how to deliver the goods live.  Whether it be the hits or lengthy jam sessions, Kendall hit the mark with his solos while also laying down that killer groove that Great White songs are known for.


After the final sing-a-long to Once Bitten Twice Shy, The Rocker Chic and I supported the band by buying some Merch and getting pix with some of the band members (my guitar hero Kendall was probably relaxing in his hotel jacuzzi by this time! Lol 

Even though the event was FREE, between our merch purchases and our loss on the after-concert gaming machines, I’m sure the band will continue to keep rocking and hopefully Cherokee Casino will have more great bands like Great White play on their Elf On A Shelf stage!


8.    Mista Bone

9.    Big Time

10.  The Angel Song

11.  Big Goodbye

12.  Save Your Love

13.  Rock Me

14.  Once Bitten Twice Shy

1.    Desert Moon

2.    Lady Red Light

3.    Stick It

4.    Face the Day

5.    Rollin' Stoned

6.    House of Broken Love

7.    Blues Jam

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