A NEW documentary on Michael Hutchence’s life goes some way towards explaining the motivations behind the musician’s death.
Michael Hutchence: The Last Rockstar, which will air over two nights on the Seven Network, reveals the lyrics Hutchence is believed to have written the night he died are revealed.
Scrawled on a notepad, the words point to his darkness and potential unhappiness:
“Wouldn’t be right to take it
Wouldn’t be right laying down
Sick of the dogs outside my window
That’s right take a look
New plan with a hook
Stuck into me
All the bitterness
Has started showing
Five years no one hears.”
Hutchence was found dead in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Double Bay in Sydney on November 22, 1997, the yellow notepad containing the song lyrics found next to his bed. The ‘dogs outside his window’ is believed to be a reference to the paparazzi pack stationed outside the hotel.
Hutchence’s death was ruled a suicide by the NSW Coroner, and the lyrics are described by close friend Nick Egan in the documentary as “almost a suicide note”.
Elsewhere, the career-spanning documentary paints a picture of Hutchence in the early days of his career as a happy performer who liked to party, surrounded by beautiful women.
The documentary then charts his mental decline following the attack he suffered in Copenhagen in 1992 when he was punched to the ground by a taxi driver, after which he lost his sense of taste and smell.
“He changed and became far more aggressive,” his INXS bandmate Andrew Farriss says in the documentary.
It was a massive blow for Hutchence who revelled in his senses before that, enjoying good food and good wine. He’s even seen on home footage in Grasse in the south of France, a town of flowers and perfume factories, describing the novel Perfume to his half-sister Tina.
Around the same time, INXS bandmate Kirk Pengilly reveals the band’s popularity was starting to wane.
Hutchence started to separate himself from the band and create solo music, but felt conflicted by that, viewing the band as brothers.
Interviews with Hutchence’s famous friends including U2 frontman Bono, Simon Le Bon from Duran Duran, actor Billy Zane, music producer Danny Saber are combined with interviews with Tina, other friends from his life and INXS band mates Pengilly and Farriss to paint a picture of the star.
Rosanna Crash, who was Hutchence’s girlfriend while the band toured the US with their hit album Kick, discusses their three-year relationship for the first time. Hutchence broke up with her for Kylie Minogue but she admits she still loves him and felt she needed to protect him.
“I just think he needed support, more than he got from people,” Crash says in the documentary.
Lawyer Colin Diamond, the executor of Hutchence’s will, speaks about Hutchence and reveals never-before-seen photos of the rock star at home with his wife Paula Yates after the birth of their baby Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily is born. The photos also show Yates’s daughters from her previous marriage to Bob Geldof, Pixie and the late Peaches, holding their baby sister, and there is home video footage taken by Hutchence of his baby daughter and Yates at home. Despite his happiness at the birth of Tiger in 1996, the documentary shows Hutchence was also distressed about an ongoing custody battle with Yates’s ex Geldof.
Michael Hutchence: The Last Rockstar, will air over two nights on the Seven Network on Monday October 16 and Tuesday October 17 at 7.30pm
Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14. Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467. MensLine Australia 1300 78 99 78.