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INXS

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Chessica Silva
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« on: June 10, 2009, 12:17:56 am »

INXS





INXS (pronounced "in excess") is an Australian rock and New Wave band, formed as The Farriss Brothers in 1977 in Sydney.[1][2] Mainstays are Garry Gary Beers on bass, Andrew Farriss on keyboards, Jon Farriss on drums, Tim Farriss on lead guitar and Kirk Pengilly on guitar/sax.[3] For twenty years, they were fronted by Michael Hutchence on lead vocals, whose "sultry good looks" and magnetic stage presence made him the focal point of the band.[1][3] Initially known for their New Wave/ska/pop style, they later developed a harder pub rock style,[1] including funk and dance elements.

INXS achieved international success with a series of hit recordings through the 1980s and 1990s, including the albums Listen Like Thieves, Kick, X and Welcome to Wherever You Are and the singles "Original Sin", "Need You Tonight", "Devil Inside" and "New Sensation".[4][5][6][7]
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Chessica Silva
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« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2009, 12:18:52 am »

Hutchence died in 1997 and INXS did not perform publicly for a year,[1]. The band made appearances with several guest singers including Jimmy Barnes, Terence Trent D'Arby, and Jon Stevens; Stevens formally joined the band for a tour and recording session in 2002.[2]

In 2005, members of INXS participated in a reality television series, broadcast worldwide, culminating in the selection of their new lead singer, Canadian J. D. Fortune, and the release of "Pretty Vegas" and "Afterglow" as singles, and its album Switch.[7][6][8]

INXS has won six Australian Recording Industry Association awards including three for 'Best Group' in 1987, 1989 and 1992[9], and was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 2001.[10][11]. To date INXS have sold more than 30 million records.
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Chessica Silva
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« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2009, 12:19:08 am »

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« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2009, 12:19:11 am »

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« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2009, 12:19:55 am »

Early years

The origins of the band began with Andrew Farriss convincing his fellow Davidson High School, New South Wales classmate, Michael Hutchence, to join his band, Doctor Dolphin.[12] The band contained two other classmates, Kent Kerny and Neil Sanders and a bass player, Garry Beersand Geoff Kennely, from a nearby high school, Forest High School.[12] In 1977, Tim Farriss, Andrew's older brother, invited Andrew, Hutchence and Beers to join him and his schoolmate Kirk Pengilly. Tim and Pengilly had been playing together since 1971 as either an acoustic duo or as a four-piece band called Guinness[12] (named after their bass player's dog[13]). Together with younger brother Jon Farriss they formed the Farriss Brothers consisting of Beers on bass guitar, Andrew Farriss on keyboards, Jon Farriss on drums, Tim Farriss on lead guitar, Geoff Kennelly on Drums, Michael Hutchence on lead vocals and Kirk Pengilly on guitar and saxophone.[1][3][14][15] The band made their debut on 16 August 1977 at Whale Beach,[16] 40 km (25 mi) north of Sydney. Andrew Farriss remembers:

    I thought the show went really well, but I think my dad summed it up the next day: 'Great show, but everyone was asleep when we left.' I think everyone might have been stoned.
    —Andrew Farriss[16]
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Chessica Silva
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« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2009, 12:20:23 am »



The parents of the Farriss boys relocated to Perth in 1978, taking Jon to continue his schooling and, as soon as Hutchence and Andrew finished school, the rest of the band followed.[2][16] They briefly performed as The Vegetables, singing "We Are the Vegetables", before returning to Sydney ten months later,[16] where they recorded a set of demos.[12] At a chance meeting in the car park of the Narabeen Antler, a pub in North Narrabeen. Tim was approached by Gary Morris, the manager of Midnight Oil.[12]

    I remember him coming up to me and saying 'Who are you working for, mate?' and I kind of went, 'Oh, we have this band and we're called The Farriss Brothers'. He offered to give us some work supporting Midnight Oil on the spot.
    —Tim Farriss[12]

The band began to regularly support Midnight Oil and other local bands. Morris advised that a member of the Oils crew had come up with a new name and suggested they change it to INXS.[12] The name INXS was inspired by English band XTC and Australian jam makers IXL.[2][16]

    "I saw a commercial for a brand of jam called IXL. Their ad featured a guy who said, 'I excel in all I do.' I'd recently seen the English band XTC when they toured Australia, and I loved their name: XTC - Ecstasy. In that moment, I put all those thoughts together. The name needed to be letters, but make a word. I put the IXL jam commercial together with XTC and the concept of a band that was inaccessible and I had it: INXS
    —Gary Morris[13]
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Chessica Silva
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« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2009, 12:21:14 am »



Pengilly explained that Morris had some other ideas:

    Gary [Morris] was a great marketing man, and I think he also had this idea of us being 'inaccessible'. He said we could be on stage in a cage of lights. It was a mystery thing [...] He told us that unless we wanted to change our ways and become the world's biggest Christian band, he could no longer manage us [...] He wanted us to write songs about Christ and to promote a drug-and-alcohol-free and no-sex-before-marriage, proper Christian lifestyle. He was very convincing and for a moment I think we might have done it. Then he got on to strange terrain.
    —Kirk Pengilly[13][16]

    We thought that would be a bit much - but it was a good name.
    —Tim Farriss[12]

The band's first performance as INXS was on 1 September 1979 at the Oceanview Hotel in Umina, New South Wales[17] and by the end of 1979, after passing on the Christian band image, they hired Chris Murphy as their manager and continued taking on the Oz the pub circuit.[2][13][16][18]

    The night Morris offered them to me, I told him I'd take them midway through their third song. I stood there thinking, "This is pretty funky.' This kid up front is pretty weird. This band plays really, really well [...] What Morris didn't realise was that I only intended to take them on as their booking agent. I didn't want to be their manager.
    —Chris Murphy[13]

Murphy was an adept business manager and negotiator. By early 1980 the band had signed a five-album record deal with a Sydney independent label, Deluxe Records, run by Michael Browning, a former manager of AC/DC.[1][2][12]
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« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2009, 12:22:07 am »



1980s

From "Simple Simon" to Shabooh Shoobah

INXS released their first single, "Simple Simon"/"We Are the Vegetables", in Australia and France in May 1980.[1][13][19] The single had its debut TV performance on Simon Townsend's Wonder World.[16] Their self-titled debut album, INXS, was recorded at Trafalgar Studios in Annandale, Sydney, it was co-produced by the band and Duncan McGuire (ex-Ayers Rock), with all songs attributed to the entire band, at the insistence of Murphy.[12][13] Deluxe gave them a budget of $10,000 to record the album, so to keep within the budget they had to record from midnight to dawn, usually after doing one of more performances earlier that night.[13] The album was released in October 1980. It featured "Just Keep Walking" which was their first Australian Top 40 single,[1][4] with the album peaking in the Top 30 of the Kent Music Report for Australian albums.[1][3][4] The album eventually went gold (selling over 35,000 units) but it took a number of years to do so.[12]

    I'm not a great fan of the first album. It's naïve and kinda cute, almost. It's these young guys struggling for a sound. All I can hear is what was going to happen later and it's probably an interesting album because of that. "Just Keep Walking" was the first time we thought we'd written a song. And that became an anthem around town. It's funny, I remember kids in pubs saying it and hearing it on the radio the first time. We'd never heard that before.
    —Michael Hutchence[12]
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« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2009, 12:22:40 am »

These early records demonstrated their New Wave/ska/pop style, and were followed by near constant touring with almost 300 shows during 1981 as the band developed their status as a live act.[1][2]

    After a year of playing pub gigs, I made sure that INXS only did tours, whether it was just a few cities or across the whole of Australia. We choose a theme, made posters, printed T-shirts, and gave it a mood that created excitement. It made an INXS show into an event, not just another pub gig.
    —Chris Murphy[13]

In 1981, they signed Gary Grant as their tour manager, who then became co-manager a year later.[12] Between touring commitments, the band released their third single in May 1981, "The Loved One", which was a cover of a 1960s song by Australian group The Loved Ones. The song was recorded at Studios 301 in Sydney,[12] produced by Richard Clapton,[3] and peaked in the Top 20.[1][4][19]

    Richard had never produced before and wasn't sure if he wanted to. I didn't care; I knew his songwriting capabilities would be a good influence to give INXS more structure. In the early days the band would jam in rehearsal until a song just happened. Then they'd stand in front of an audience and play that song and see whether or not the audience jumped around. Then they'd go back and chop it up until it worked. And if it continued to work live, they'd go and record it.
    —Chris Murphy[13]

The success of the single led to Clapton and the band returning to Studio s 301 between July and August 1981 to create an album. In October 1981, their second album Underneath the Colours was released and became a hit in Australia peaking at #15.[4][20]
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« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2009, 12:23:06 am »



    I was completely enamored with them. I really thought that they could become one of the biggest bands in the world, completely out of nowhere. I mean, at that point, they didn't even have an audience.
    —Richard Clapton[13]

    Most of the songs on Underneath the Colours were written in a relatively short space of time. Most bands shudder at the prospect of having 20 years to write their first album and four days to write their second. For us, though, it was good. It left less room for us to go off on all sorts of tangents.
    —Michael Hutchence[12]
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« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2009, 12:23:20 am »

Soon after recording sessions had finished, band members started work on outside projects. Beers, Jon and Andrew Farriss played on Clapton's solo album, The Great Escape. Hutchence recorded "Speed Kills", written by Don Walker of Cold Chisel for the soundtrack of the film Freedom directed by Scott Hicks. It was his first solo single and was released by WEA Records in early 1982.[12] In January, INXS toured New Zealand as support act for Cold Chisel. Band manager, Murphy, became convinced their future no longer lay with Deluxe Records, who had been unable to attract international interest, and decided to record a new song, "The One Thing" at their own expense, with Mark Opitz at Paradise Studios.[12] The song turned out so well that Murphy hired Opitz to produce three more songs.[13] Murphy approached WEA Records Australia with copies of the song, leading to INXS signing a recording deal in July 1982 with WEA for releases in Australia, South East Asia, Japan and New Zealand, Atco Records (a subsidiary of Atlantic Records) for North America and Polygram for Europe and the UK.[1][2][3][12]

    INXS got signed not because some A&R guy thought we'd sell a lot of records, but because we sold out so many venues.
    —Tim Farriss[12]
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« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2009, 12:24:15 am »



Murphy and the band weren't entirely convinced that Opitz could produce an entire album that would attract international interest so prior to recording their third album Pengilly, Hutchence and Andrew Farriss visited the UK and USA, with a view to selecting a suitable producer, only to find that no-one they wanted was available and that most people advised them that Opitz's work on their single was as good as they could wish for.[12]

    Bob Clearmountain said to us, 'I love your music and I would definitely work with you guys, but I don't have any ideas better than the guy who recorded these for you. The best advice I have for you is to go back to Australia and record the whole album with him.
    —Kirk Pengilly[13]

In mid-1982, they commenced recording at Rhinoceros Studios, with Opitz.[3]

    Mark was the first producer that was able to capture some glimmer of what the band felt it was like live. Prior to us, Mark had done bands like AC/DC, Cold Chisel, The Angels. Big guitar sounds, mighty drum beats.
    —Tim Farriss[12]
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« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2009, 12:24:43 am »

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« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2009, 12:26:57 am »

In October 1982, Shabooh Shoobah was released internationally on Atlantic/Atco Records, peaking at #52 on the US Billboard 200 and #46 on the Hot Pop Albums chart.[7][8] In Australia it peaked at #5 and remained in the albums charts for 94 weeks.[4] The single "The One Thing" brought them their first Top 30 hit in United States peaking at #30 on 28 May 1983[21], it was a Top 20 hit in Canada,[6] and peaked at #14 in Australia on 23 August 1982.[4]"One Thing" was their first video to air on the fledgling MTV and siginficantly added to the ultimate success of the single.[13] INXS undertook their first US performance in San Diego in March, 1983, to a crowd of 24 patrons.[12] Their first tour was as support for Adam and the Ants, then support for Stray Cats, The Kinks,[1], Hall & Oates followed by The Go-Go's.[12][13] INXS played alongside many of their contemporaries on New Wave Day in May 1983, at the US Festival in Devore, California.[22] It was during this time that Grant, their co-manager, relocated permanently to New York to ensure a continual presence in the northern hemisphere.[12] The band remained on the road in the US for most of the year, including support for Men at Work and by mid-1983 were headlining venues such as The Ritz in New York.[12]

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« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2009, 12:27:48 am »




From "Original Sin" to Listen Like Thieves

Following a performance in Toronto, the band was approached by producer Nile Rodgers, and by September 1983, recorded "Original Sin", originally titled "Brand New Day", at New York's Power Station Studios.

    We were fresh off the road. So we had the basic song completed and we'd been playing it live in the set. He was talking to us through the headphones, kind of saying things that were meant to encourage us, and we figured he was just getting levels and stuff on the whole band playing together, but after we'd run it down a couple of times he said 'OK, come in and have a listen'. We went in and the control room was sort of full of people dancing. Apart from adding background vocals and the sax solo, we were finished. We didn't even know he was recording.
    —Andrew Farriss[12]
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