Today I want to wish a very happy birthday to one very special person for me – Michael Hutchence. The most charismatic man I’ve ever known!

Happy birthday, Michael, wherever you are!


No matter how many years pass, Hutch will forever be linked to the name INXS – the band in which he was a frontman. The guys of INXS were like brothers to him and that is still obvious to anybody who watches (especially as often as me) their official music videos and records of live performances or numerous interviews.

It happened so that I became a fan of INXS and Michael when I was just a baby. Yeah, literally. From my parents’ stories, it was around the time when “Suicide Blonde” was released, and my dad–another huge music fan who recorded for me from MTV all the music videos of the best performers of the ‘80s and ‘90s, which now are considered as classic ones– recorded INXS videos too. Somehow, I couldn’t get enough of “Suicide Blonde”. My parents still laugh remembering that time. Since then, I proudly call INXS “My forever favourite band” or just “My band”. When you are a baby, you don’t care how good-looking the band’s frontman or any of the members is, so that fact that they managed to turn me into their biggest fan at such a young age speaks volumes! That means that there was a true talent, which never declined but was always developing and getting better throughout their career. That becomes obvious when you look at how much Michael changed for the better since INXS’s garage days. Huge change. Huge!

Here’s the video that started it all for me:

Michael was a one-of-a-kind person: a Rock God on stage with unbelievable sex appeal, and an absolutely down-to-earth man off-stage (as I have been told by some of my friends who were lucky to know him). I can listen to Hutch’s voice forever, at any time or in any circumstances, and never get tired of it. Seems like the lyrics for songs he wrote by himself or in collaboration with Andrew Farriss (another exceptionally talented member of INXS) was written to make the life of every person listening to them better and more colourful. Just listen to “Never Tear Us Apart” and you’ll understand what I’m talking about:

I told you

That we could fly

‘Cause we all have wings

But some of us don’t know why


I was standing

You were there

Two worlds collided

And they could never ever tear us apart

That video… I remember how I visited all those places shown in it while I was in Prague and recreated the scenes from it for my photos, lol. I bet no tourist have seen as much as I did back then exploring those locations. That was a significantly bigger addition to a standard list of places-to-see in Prague. One of the photos taken of me on the Charles Bridge is still one of my most favourite ‘til today.

Me on the Charles Bridge, Prague

I never had a chance to meet Michael and I regret it every single time when I’m watching my “Live Baby Live” DVD (London, Wembley Stadium, 1991). I always try to imagine what it would be like to stand there in the 1st row watching Michael, Andrew, MH_WembleyGarry Gary, John, Kirk, and Tim give definitely the best performance of their lives, or hear that bit of John’s drums at the beginning of the 1st song of the gig “Guns in the Sky”, and thinking how amazing it must have been to jump to the rhythm of “New Sensation”! I always have goosebumps watching the crowd during that song!!!


Well, I can talk for hours and hours about my favourite concert DVD. But as they say, it’s better to see once than hear a hundred times. So, I’ll just add some special parts of it here… If you’ve watched it, today’s a perfect day to re-watch Live Baby Live, and if you have never watched this concert, well, don’t hesitate! It’ll change your criteria of gigs evaluation forever!

I guess, I was destined to become an INXS and Michael’s fan for life ‘cause I was even born just 2 days after Michael Hutchence – on Jan. 24 (but in the different year, of course), so every year I kind of begin my celebrations on Jan. 22 with listening to and watching everything favourite of INXS on Michael’s birthday and then continue having a great time on my birthday two days later

INXS 199657_355734524500865_665232960_nI’ve read some books about Michael (“Just a Man” is one of them) and it seems like I knew him personally (even though I didn’t), so many things in common. I guess, that’s an Aquarius thing. But still, I’ve always wanted to get the chance to meet or somehow communicate with the guys who occupy such an important place in my heart. Especially now that Hutch is no longer with us. And one day, fortune did smile on me – I asked a question during INXS’s questions-and-answers with fans, and my question was selected for them, I received an answer from INXS (I felt like I finally met them – in some way):


But wait! That wasn’t all: on my birthday (January 24, 2015) John Farriss (awesome drummer of INXS) wished me Happy Birthday on Twitter.


In addition to it all, I won a signed copy of Chris Murphy’s (INXS’ long-time manager) book in which he describes a lot of insider details about “my guys” – beginning of their career, Michael’s becoming one of the greatest singers of all time, and of course their work together (in combination with many interesting facts from his personal life).

INXS_book_Mariana Shevchenko

So, on his birthday, I want not only to celebrate Michael Hutchence’s life and legacy, but say a big THANK YOU for helping me become who I am today – a better and more interesting person, who has now lots of stories to tell about numerous concerts I’ve been at and some well-known people I’ve met. All because one day back then, quite a long time ago, I saw a charismatic wavy-haired man in the music video, who fascinated me and turned me into a huge music fan for life!

Happy birthday, Hutch! We love and miss you!

You are for us, your fans, forever a Rock God!