INXS have announced that they have hired Irish singer Ciaran Gribbin as their latest frontman. Gribbin, who met keyboardist and primary songwriter Andrew Farriss at a party in Syndey two years ago, has already recorded demos with the band and will join them on the road for a brief tour in November.
Gribbin is the replacement for J.D. Fortune, an American singer who joined the band after winning the Rock Star: INXS competition but was fired for a second time last year. The band’s original frontman, Michael Hutchence, committed suicide in 1997.
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Farriss tells Billboard that he and the rest of INXS do not “have a master plan” regarding how they will move forward with Gribbin, but that they are “just really enjoying being creative” and “experimenting with a whole range of things” in the studio.
“A baptism of fire is the best way to describe the live shows, I think,” Gribbin tells Billboard. “In a way I’m slightly nervous, and in another way I’m unbelievably excited. It’s a wonderful, proud moment for me. It’s a real feeling of achievement to have a band of INXS’ stature believe in me as a performer and a singer. It’s genuine dream-come-true, fairy-tale stuff for me. I’m still waking up in the morning here in Australia going, ‘How did I get here?'”