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Jack White Explains Radio City Walkout, Disses Crowd

Jack White’s Radio City gig in New York last year definitely got the rocker some bad press, as he managed to get only 45 minutes into a set at the large venue before storming off the stage, never to return.

At the time, Jack White‘s Radio City Music Hall performance was understandably poorly received by many of the ticket buying fans and those who read about it later — and the former White Stripes frontman was lambasted as precious, cranky and unpleasant.

Jack White hasn’t really addressed the Radio City Music Hall gig since that night in September, and it’s kind of been brought up here and there as a slight at the multi-talented musician in press and on the web.

But a recent Rolling Stone interview with White tackled the Radio City walkout (among many, many other topics), and the opinionated musician says that his decision to leave the stage was based on the crowd’s reaction.

The RS interviewer admits he attended the Jack White show, and cautiously broaches the subject, saying he’d attended the show and was curious as to what went down:

“I don’t know if you want to talk about this or not, but I was at the Radio City show where you walked off. I loved the show, but people made a big deal about it. What was going through your head that night?”

White replied:

“Oh, I just do what the crowd tells me to do. I always do that. I always have and always will. If I play an old folks’ home or a fire station, I shut up when the crowd tells me to shut up.”

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He continues:

“I provoke when the crowd tells me to provoke. The crowd’s in complete control of me. So that’s, that’s what will happen at any given night you see me.”

The interviewer presses, querying:

“You just weren’t feeling it?”

But White holds firm:

“I was just doing what they told me to do [Laughs].”

You can read Jack White’s full Rolling Stone interview over at the mag’s site.