In Memoriam: Michael Hutchence Of INXS

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There are not enough words to thank INXS for 35 years of amazing music. Thank you Andrew, Kirk, Tim, Jon, and Garry. And to you Michael, you were one of the best performers of all time, and an incredible human being. We miss you very much. R.I.P. sweet Michael – 1/22/60 – 11/22/97 ♥

Related posts:
Fifteen Years Without Michael Hutchence, INXS’ Singer
The Loved One – INXS’ Michael Hutchence
What Happened To Michael Hutchence’s Fortune? Hutchence millions kiss dirt, leaving family with zilch

The Loved One, INXS’ Michael Hutchence – Documentary +Tributes

Gone But Never Forgotten

Charismatic, enigmatic, Michael Hutchence was the personification of the classic rock and roll star and, seemingly, had it all. His death in 1997 robbed the world of a unique and fragile talent. ‘The Loved One’ traces Hutchence and INXS’ rise from obscure Sydney bar rooms and clubs to stadiums all over the world. Featuring interviews with many of Hutchence’s close friends and contemporaries, the film sensitively investigates the pressures and demons that spurred his success and ultimately led to his spiral into depression and eventual death. Featuring stunning footage of Michael performing on the stages of the world, ‘The Loved One’ is a poignant and ultimately uplifting tribute to both the singer and the band.

Michael Hutchence – The Loved One / Documentary [5 videos]

Fans Tributes – Gone But Never Forgotten, I
1960 – 1997

Uploaded on Nov 22, 2011
Gone But Never Forgotten, II
1960 – 1997

Everything (we did for each other)

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Fifteen Years Without Michael Hutchence, INXS’ Singer
In Memoriam: INXS’Michael Hutchence
What Happened To Michael Hutchence’s Fortune? Hutchence millions kiss dirt, leaving family with zilch

What Happened To Michael Hutchence’s Fortune? Hutchence millions kiss dirt, leaving family with zilch

Michael Hutchence - INXS

Michael Hutchence – INXS

The Sun Herald – Australia
Hutchence millions kiss dirt, leaving family with zilch

At last the value of Michael Hutchence’s estate can be revealed: zilch. So what happened to his fortune? Kate McClymont investigates.

Eight years after his death, the family of Michael Hutchence has finally received the executor’s report regarding the late singer’s estate. Despite having an estimated fortune of between $10 million and $20 million, it came as no surprise to the family to find the cupboard was bare.

Hutchence’s advisers say the situation is exactly as Hutchence would have wished, as he didn’t want his “thieving relatives” and “girlfriends” to get their hands on his fortune. This, of course, is at complete odds with the wishes the rock star expressed in his will.

“I just cannot believe that it took them eight years to do this,” said Hutchence’s mother, Patricia Glassop, referring to a four-page letter from the Hong Kong law firm Boase Cohen & Collins dated August 2.

“Dear Madam,” it reads, “We now take this opportunity of enclosing a final accounting prepared by the executor in respect of this matter for your file.” According to the figures, the balance of the INXS singer’s estate as of July this year was zero. The letter went on to say Hutchence had $506 in cash at the time of his death, while his share of INXS’s bank balance was $572.

After the sale of art works, real estate, guitars, a Harley-Davidson motorbike, a Jeep and other items, the outgoings of the estate, which included $670,000 in legal fees, meant there was nothing there for the beneficiaries.

But not included in the executor’s list were three Gold Coast properties worth more than $10 million, a villa in the south of France, rented at $9000 per week, a house in London’s fashionable Chelsea, a development in Lombok, Indonesia, a string of luxury cars including a Bentley and an Aston Martin, as well as the continuing royalty payments from INXS.

Hutchence had structured his financial affairs not only to minimise tax but to protect his fortune from falling into the wrong hands. Accordingly, his assets were hidden in an unbelievably complex array of companies and trusts which criss-crossed the globe from Liberia to the British Virgin Islands.

Among those who might be able to shed light on the singer’s financial affairs are: Andrew Young, a Sydney barrister struck off for not paying tax for 20 years; Tony Alford, a Gold Coast accountant recently held by a judge of the Queensland Supreme Court to be “a witness of little credit”; Gordon Fisher, a Monaco-based tax adviser whose activities were investigated during the Costigan royal commission; Andrew Paul, a Hong Kong accountant and executor of Hutchence’s will; and Colin Diamond, a mysterious Australian lawyer who lives in the luxury Ascott Metropolis hotel in Auckland.

The Herald has obtained correspondence from Gordon

Fisher, the man who instigated Hutchence’s complex schemes before a falling out with the singer and the rest of the band over royalty payments.

Two years after Hutchence’s death, Fisher wrote to the Hong Kong law firm handling Hutchence’s estate explaining Hutchence’s business affairs. While the ultimate holding company for Hutchence’s assets, Fisher wrote, was the Vocals Trust, Hutchence was not the ultimate beneficiary of this trust in order to protect his assets from claims by third parties.

“In other words,” wrote Fisher, “the Vocals Trust was an asset protection trust. As the deceased observed at the time, and subsequently, he wished to secure himself against what he called a) his “thieving relatives” b) his “girlfriends” and c) in the event he married, his wife/ies [sic] …”

He also said Hutchence was well aware of the risks in structuring his affairs in this way, and that he had to place his trust in those who had ultimate control over his assets.

Perhaps not realising the irony of his words, Fisher continued: “The deceased was a very worldly man and was acutely aware of his potential exposure to financial abuse by others.”

Hutchence was found dead in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Double Bay on November 22, 1997. A coroner found his death was suicide.

The year before he died, the 37-year-old star had made a will in which Amnesty International and Greenpeace were each to receive $US250,000.

His only child, Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily, was to receive the remaining half of his estate, with the rest being split equally between his partner, Paula Yates, his mother, father, brother and sister.

Greenpeace has confirmed it never received the money, nor did Amnesty. The Hutchence family did not receive anything, while it is understood Yates, who died in September 2000, obtained an interest-free loan for £100,000 from a Liberian company that controlled Hutchence’s royalty payments. It is not known whether Tiger Lily has been receiving any money.

So if the beneficiaries named in Hutchence’s will came away empty-handed, where has the money gone?

Those currently involved in Hutchence’s trusts include Colin Diamond and his business partner, the Gold Coast accountant and racing car enthusiast Tony Alford. Helping them is Gordon Fisher.

As well as controlling some of the Hutchence trusts, Diamond was an executor of the will but subsequently resigned to avoid suggestions of conflict of interest.

The connections between the various advisers to Hutchence go back a long way. Diamond and Fisher came to notice during the Costigan royal commission’s inquiries into the bottom-of-the-harbour tax minimisation schemes. No charges were recommended against the pair.

According to a secret volume of the royal commission, Fisher had a business relationship with the late Brian Ray, who subsequently faced a long trial for tax fraud but was acquitted.

In the 1980s, Diamond, Fisher and Andrew Paul had set up business in Hong Kong as international lawyers and accountants. A decade later, the trio had come to the notice of the Australian Federal Police, who were investigating a complicated tax scheme in which a government agency lost $19 million and the ANZ bank $3 million.

While the police recommended Fisher be charged, the Commonwealth Department of Public Prosecutions declined because the case was too complex to run.

Diamond, frequently described as “elusive” in the press, has described himself as “a barrister practising in international law”. But searches of the jurisdictions in which Diamond claims to practise – Hong Kong, Queensland and New Zealand – failed to find anyone of that name holding a current practising certificate.

Alford and Diamond, who have been business partners for years, are involved in a Queensland registered company, Elusive Enterprises.

Paul resigned as a signatory to the trusts after Hutchence’s death but remains the executor of his will, which was drawn up by Young. Paul has indicated that Gordon Fisher is once again helping with Hutchence’s affairs.

Another of Hutchence’s advisers, Young, was struck off as a barrister in 2003 after the NSW Court of Appeal held he was not a fit and proper person. Young was bankrupted after failing to pay his tax for 20 years.

In 1998, Young and Diamond were interviewed by the now defunct music magazine axs.

Reporter: “You’ve copped a bit of a hiding in the press as some sort of financial Svengali to Michael, with suggestions that, with regards to his estate, all is not as it should be. You’ve refused to speak to the media before this, so let me ask you: Where’s the money?”

Diamond: “None of your business. That’s the point; it’s private. Don’t you guys get it? It’s private.”

Young was quoted saying: “From my discussions with Michael, his finances were structured precisely according to his wishes. I understand the money is exactly where it is supposed to be.”

Wherever it is “supposed to be”, it is certainly not in the hands of the beneficiaries named in his will.

Hutchence’s family recalls his excitement when he bought a house on a huge block of land in La Spezia Court on the Gold Coast’s Isle of Capri in 1995. Not only had $1 million bought the house, but the sellers had included their Bentley in the deal.

Imagine the family’s surprise when it later received a letter from Tony Alford, saying: “To the best of the writer’s knowledge, the late Michael Hutchence was not involved directly or indirectly with the purchase of the subject property and can confirm that no part of the purchase was funded by him.”

A bowling alley in Labrador, also on the Gold Coast, which the family thought was owned by Hutchence, was in fact owned by a company called Nexcess, the directors of which were Alford and Diamond.

Documents obtained from Australian Securities and Investments Commission by the Herald show that not long after Hutchence’s death, Pokfield, the same Liberian-registered company that had lent Paula Yates money, agreed to lend Nexcess millions of dollars.

Also absent from the Hutchence estate was a development site in Southport that changed hands last month for more than $8 million. Bought for $1.3 million in 1991, the site was owned by a British-registered company Nextcircle, which was in turn owned by two companies connected with Paul and Diamond.

The French villa at which Hutchence hosted his sister Tina’s wedding also turned out not to be his. Instead, it was controlled by a British company called Leaguework, which was connected to Gordon Fisher’s Monaco-based business partner Norman Leighton.

And while the executor of the estate recorded the sale of a Harley-Davidson for just $2000, the Sydney hotelier Kim Maloney bought Hutchence’s custom-made Harley at auction in 2002 for $61,600.

The legal action the Hutchence family took against Paul, Alford, Diamond and others in the Queensland Supreme Court in 1999 was eventually settled out of court.

It is understood the amount the family received was not enough to cover its $500,000 in court costs.

In the end, Hutchence’s mother said that what she received from her son’s estate was “absolutely nothing”.

Correcting herself, she added: “I got a couple of small bowls, some awards, and a big poster of Brigitte Bardot in And God Created Woman.”

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In Memoriam: INXS’Michael Hutchence
Fifteen Years Without Michael Hutchence, INXS’Singer
The Loved One, INXS’ Michael Hutchence – Documentary + Tributes
What Happened To Michael Hutchence’s Fortune? Hutchence millions kiss dirt, leaving family with zilch

Fifteen Years Without Michael Hutchence, INXS’ Singer

Michael H

Michael Hutchence (INXS)

Fifteen years ago, on November 22, 1997, INXS lead singer Michael Hutchence, 37, was found dead in a hotel room in Sydney, Australia. After Hutchence failed to appear for a morning appointment with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, a Ritz Carlton employee entered Hutchence’s room and found the body of the singer hanging in the room.

Hutchence, who lived in London, had arrived in Sydney to make final preparations for the INXS 20th anniversary “Lose Your Head” tour scheduled to kick off Tuesday in Wollongong.

A friend of Hutchence told detectives that they had made plans to meet later that day, and that the singer “didn’t sound like he had any intention of taking his life.”

Rock music commentator Ian Meldrum, in a statement to the Associated Press, noted that when he last saw Hutchence eight weeks ago, the singer didn’t seem overly troubled. “I’ve never seen Michael more peaceful and happier in his life,” he said.

Former girlfriend Kym Wilson and her then boyfriend, Andrew Reyment, were the last people to see Hutchence alive when they left him at 4:50 am; he was still awaiting a phone call from his partner and mother of his child Tiger Lily, Paula Yates, in London concerning whether she would bring their daughter Tiger to Australia. Hutchence’s second last outgoing phone call was to his personal manager, Martha Troup’s voice-mail, “Marth, Michael here. I’ve fucking had enough”. When Troup returned the call there was no answer. At 9:54 am he talked to his former longtime girlfriend, Michele Bennett, who stated that he was crying, sounded upset and said he needed to see her. Bennett arrived at his door at about 10:40 am but, there was no response. Hutchence’s body was discovered by a hotel employee at 11:50 am.

The local police removed a leather belt and several prescription drugs from the scene, and although the Australian Associated Press reported it as an apparent suicide, the official cause of death had not been yet determined. As of 6 p.m. EST, no suicide note had been found.

The INXS tour, which was to have been the group’s first in Australia in more than three years, was canceled. INXS formed in Perth in 1977 and released four well-received albums on an independent label. The band’s major label debut, Listen Like Thieves (1985) was their first real commercial breakthrough, peaking at No. 11 on U.S. charts largely on the strength of the single, “What You Need.”

The success of Listen Like Thieves served as an appropriate prelude for INXS’s next album, Kick. Released in 1987, Kick sold nine million copies and featured four hit singles — “Need You Tonight,” “Devil Inside,” “New Sensation,” and “Never Tear Us Apart.”

Although record sales had fallen off in the last few years, Hutchence still retained celebrity status in Australia due in good measure to his well-publicized romances with pop star Kylie Minogue, model Helena Christensen and Paula Yates, ex-wife of rock star and Live Aid planner Bob Geldof. Hutchence and Yates have a daughter, Tiger Lily.

During his relationship with Helena Christensen, the couple were cycling when he collided with a taxi and its driver assaulted him. As a result, Hutchence’s fractured skull left him with substantial loss of the sense of smell and partial loss of taste. This led to periods of depression and increased levels of aggression; he had not fully recovered after two weeks in a Copenhagen hospital.

Although police confirmed that Hutchence’s death was caused by hanging, they had yet to determine whether it was suicide or accidental death by asphyxiation.

Derrick Hand, the state coroner, later told the Sydney Morning Herald that a post-mortem examination had concluded that the singer in fact hanged himself in his fifth-floor suite of the posh Ritz Carlton hotel with a leather belt.

Hand went on to say, contradicting his earlier statement, that they were still unsure if Hutchence had committed suicide; results of a toxicology report conducted were not expected for a few weeks. Police confirmed that no foul play was involved in the death and that no illicit drugs were found in the room. However, Hutchence was found hanging naked in the room with a variety of prescription pills, including the anti-depressant drug Prozac strewn across the floor, the paper reported.

In a statement issued by Mercury Records, members of INXS said they are all in extreme shock at the loss of their dear friend. Hutchence’s funeral was held in Sydney.

It was widely reported that Hutchence died of autoerotic asphyxiation, but some members of his family and friends thought he died of suicide after a long bout of depression. He was in a custody battle with Paula Yates over their daughter, Tiger Lily.

INXS fans the world over wanted to celebrate what would have been the 50th birthday of the late Michael Hutchence in a special way — by sending 1982 hit ‘Don’t Change’ to the No. 1 spot on iTunes. They couldn’t pick a better INXS song to buy all over again.

Musician and actor Michael Hutchence was born in Sydney, Australia on Jan. 22, 1960. He was a founding member and the lead singer and lyricist of rock band INXS from 1977 to his death in his native city on Nov. 22, 1997 — from what the New South Wales Coroner deemed “suicide.” However, controversy and conspiracy still swirl about the fallen artist. A Belushi’s worth of drugs were found in his system. Plus Paula Yates, the mother of his daughter Tiger Lily Hutchence, claimed he died from autoerotic asphyxiation. Yates died of heroin overdose in 2000.

According to rock music historian, Ian McFarlane, “Hutchence was the archetypal rock showman. He exuded an overtly sexual, macho cool with his flowing locks, and lithe and exuberant stage movements”. Michael Hutchence won the ‘Best International Artist’ at the 1991 BRIT Awards with INXS winning the related group award.

His private life was often reported in the Australian and international press, with a string of love affairs with prominent actresses, models and singers. Michael once wrote: “I know all’s fair in love and war but when you go off and try to be by yourself and it ends up on the front page of the press it’s frightening, knowing your life is under such scrutiny.”

Hutchence’s relationship with UK television presenter Paula Yates began while she was divorcing the music artist and Live Aid organizer, Bob Geldof. In 2000, Yates died of an overdose and her daughter was placed in Geldof’s custody with her half-sisters.

The life of Michael Hutchence is heading to the big screen. ‘Two Worlds Colliding,’ named after a line in the INXS track “Never Tear Us Apart,” is based upon on the book Just a Man: The Real Michael Hutchence, written by the singer’s mother and sister.

The screenplay’s writer, Bobby Galinsky, tells Australia’s 702 Sydney that the film is “from the family’s side as Michael being a son, a brother, a friend. It’s not a sex, drugs and rock and roll tabloid situation.” Casting is set to begin next year, allowing Hollywood executives enough time to talk Galinsky into adding a little sex, drugs and rock & roll…

By the way, if you missed it, Rolling Stone magazine did an excellent flashback to Hutchence on what would have been the singer’s 50th birthday. See video below.

Meanwhile, a documentary on the INXS singer’s life is being put together by Michael’s former manager, Martha Troup. She set up a trust after his death in 1997 to “develop projects that highlight Michael’s genius” and said she’s talking to producers and directors about the documentary, despite INXS refusing to give her permission to use any of their songs for the project. “A documentary is going to be made. I will make sure, no matter what, and I hope it is with everybody’s blessing,” she said.

Uploaded on Jun 19, 2010
INXS and Michael Hutchence performance at Wembley , on July 13, 1991 – from the DVD “Live Baby Live”

Rolling Stone: What would have been INXS frontman Michael Hutchence’s 50th birthday. To pay tribute to the singer, who died in November 1997, his bandmates have released statements remembering his poetic gifts and personal achievements. Watch INXS in their prime with a 1991 performance of “Need You Tonight” from London’s Wembley Stadium, then read on below as the three Farriss brothers, Kirk Pengilly and Gary Beers celebrate Michael’s memory.

Kirk Pengilly:
“As a performer, he was one of the best.
As a humanitarian, he made you feel human.
As a singer, he was blessed with the constitution of an ox and never
As a friend, you felt like you were his best.
As a writer, he was an enlightened poet.
I will always remember him. Michael loved and embraced life in every
direction. So here’s to you mate. See you when I see you…”

Tim Farriss:
“INXS were/are a ‘Band Of Brothers’, literally. The original six, ‘Band Of Brothers’ sipping the wine, savouring the food and the fruits of our labour and lives spent together. Climbing the endless mountains, overcoming everything we possibly could.. and we did!! We did IT Michael!”

Jon Farriss:
“There is not a day that goes by that I don’t think of Michael. I feel privileged to have known Michael on so many levels. He was a confidant, a musical partner, a song-writing partner, a touring partner, a business partner, a performing partner, and a party partner, a ‘Howdy Partner’, a band mate, a live in flat mate and as an extension of my family. We are family.”

Garry Beers:
“I first met Michael when he was about 13 years old. He became the lead singer of my first proper band with Andrew called Dr Dolphin. The things that really struck me about Michael back in those days was his compassion and his great sense of humour. I miss Michael, but luckily for me he lives on in my dreams.”

Related posts:
In Memoriam: INXS’Michael Hutchence
The Loved One, INXS’ Michael Hutchence – Documentary + Tributes
What Happened To Michael Hutchence’s Fortune? Hutchence millions kiss dirt, leaving family with zilch