Few rock frontmen commanded a stage or a recording studio in the way that Michael Hutchence did with INXS, and few have left a bigger gap since his untimely death 17 years ago today, on November 22, 1997.
In a moving statement on Michael’s memorial website, his stepmother Susie writes to his memory: “It’s November again and Jacaranda time when Sydney is bathed in a purple glow. A yearly reminder of that fateful November seventeen years ago when your father and I bathed in your happy glow whilst enjoying what would be our last dinner, indeed the last time we would see you in this life.
The news of the following Saturday morning broke our hearts, as it did those close to your heart and the legion of fans around the world. One thing is certain every November the Jacaranda will blossom again in all its purple glory, and we will pause to remember the loss of a prodigious talent and a sensitive and beautiful soul. Rest in peace Michael with your dear father Kelland. Susie Hutchence (a very proud stepmother).”
The sad circumstances of Michael’s demise need not be dwelt on, but his extraordinary charisma and a remarkable body of work as a recording artist and performer bear endless celebration — with INXS as well as his solo work and with the side project Max Q.
“Sometimes lead singers relate only to other lead singers,” writes U2’s Larry Mullen on the memorial site. “It's kind of this ego thing. But Michael wasn't like that at all. He was a really sweet guy, a very nice guy to everyone he met. He was the consummate pop star.”
Celebrate nearly three hours of Michael’s finest music with INXS on our uDiscover playlist on Spotify
Explore the INXS catalogue by downloading from their Google Play page or iTunes page
Buy INXS on Amazon
Visit our dedicated INXS Artist Page