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Michael Hutchence’s brother Rhett Hutchence speaks out

Exclusive interview.

It’s a heartfelt quest that has taken rock star Michael Hutchence’s brother around the world, seeking answers to the riddle of the INXS singer’s tragic death. 

Yet Rhett Hutchence has drawn a mystifying blank from the people closest to his older brother – Michael’s former band mates Kirk Pengilly, Garry Gary Beers and the Farris brothers Andrew, Jon and Tim. 

‘I’ve tried to contact INXS, but I’ve just hit brick walls and I don’t know why,’ says Rhett, 55, who is trying to discover exactly why Michael died almost 20 years ago on November 22, 1997. ‘I guess through this article, I’m putting out a plea for them to speak to me.’ 

‘This is a heartfelt request: ‘Hey guys, whats wrong, I thought we were friends?’ I’m asking them for some assistance on this. I respect that it could be hard and painful to relive the past, but please get in touch.’ 

Rhett launched his crusade back in January, on what would have been Michael’s 57th birthday, with an emotional post on social media. 

‘Only three things could have happened that day,’ he wrote. ‘Michael may have committed suicide. Michael may have passed due to lack of oxygen, due to sexual misadventure, or Michael was killed.’ 

‘In the last 19 years, looking, searching, talking to people, I have found all three things to be plausible, but I still don’t have a solid answer.’ 

Since then, Bali-based Rhett has travelled t Europe and the US hunting for clues that might reveal Michael’s state of mind in the months and days leading up to his lonely death in room 524 at Double Bay’s Ritz Carlton Hotel. 

NSW State Coroner Derrick Hand later ruled that the charismatic frontman had committed suicide by hanging while depressed and under the influence of drink and drugs. 

But Michael’s anguished lover Paula Yates – the mother of their baby daughter Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily Hutchence – always insisted he died by accident when an autoerotic sex game went horribly wrong. 

inxs
(Credit: Getty)

Father-of-three Rhett is upfront about past mistakes that could have alienated the band from him, but says: ‘I’m begging them to speak to me. Their silence speaks louder than words in some ways.’ 

For the full story see this weeks issue of New Idea

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