INXS Manager Chris Murphy Dead at 66


Chris “CM” Murphy, longtime manager of the Australian band INXS (from 1979 to 1995 and again in the 2000s), has died in Sydney after a fight with mantle cell lymphoma. He was 66.

A representative of Murphy Petrol Group shared the news on Saturday morning (January 16): “It is with great sadness that Caroline Murphy and family confirm that Christopher (CM) Mark Murphy, president of Murphy Petrol Group Today have passed away and went peacefully on ‘Sugar Beach Ranch’, property of their beloved Ballina surrounded by their family. CM celebrated an illustrious career over 40 years and made an incredible impact on the global music and entertainment industry. Known for his ‘band of brothers’ INXS taking worldwide stardom, CM Murphy influenced the lives of many people around the world with his endless passion and drive. He will be greatly missed.”

Members of INXS said: “It is with great sadness that the rest of the members of INXS mourn the demise of our brother Chris Murphy. Without Chris’s vision, passion and hard work, the INXS story would be completely different. Chris’s star was very shining and we celebrate a life well and send all our love to his family. “

INXS was one of the most successful groups to emerge from Australia, selling millions of albums worldwide. The band experienced commercial peaks in the US, chief among them: the 1987 album “Kick”, which has sold over 7 million copies. Its predecessors, 1985’s “Listen Like Theses,” and the follow-up, 1990’s “X”, were also the multi-platinum smashes of US INXS magnetic frontman Michael Hutchness, who died in 1997 at the age of 37.

In the documentary “Mistify: Michael Hutchness”, Murphy explained his decision to manage the group. “I will only do it on the basis that we do it internationally,” he told the band (founding members include Gary Gary Bear, Andrew Farris, John Farris, Tim Farris, Kirk Pengilli and Hutchins). Murphy had experience in the global music market since working at his father’s theatrical booking agency, Mark Murphy & Associates, since he was a teenager. Management was later interrupted under the patronage of Gary Morris, whose clients included Midnight Oil and INXS, launched MMK Management.

Murphy wisely negotiated an agreement for INXS directly with an American label, Atco, and later Atlantic, a move widely believed to have played a major role in his breakout success. Even now, the release of “Kick” to Atlantic was initially reticent. As Murphy reported in the interview, the label offered the band $ 1 million to re-record. Instead, he called the album’s lead single, “Need You Tonight” (whose guitar riff is currently on Dua Lipa’s “Break My Heart”) with a coda of two minutes 37 seconds called “Mediate”. The song was at number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Murphy said: “Kick ‘feels like playing four different bands. There were big ballasts, rock rock, funk… Kick is fantastic, but it’s everywhere and I thought, to put it together in any kind of campaign How to pull?

INXS became a mass touring act to fill arenas worldwide. Speaking to Music Network in 2019, Murphy was asked about the band’s rise. “I’ve never been to INXS parties,” Murphy said. “After they play a huge show at New York’s Madison Square Garden, they will hit the clubs. I’ll go back to my hotel room and work out my plan on how to bring them to the next level.”

Murphy, who also managed group models during the 1980s, was described as a master marketer, but had stumbles, like the ephemeral Max Q, between Hutchins and Australian composer and producer Ollie Olsen in 1989. help. At the same time, Murphy adopted his entrepreneurial side and invested in a wide variety of businesses for several decades, including an organic food provider, a magazine and a Sydney radio station. In 1988, he launched the independent label Rouot, home to acts such as Crash Politics, The Hummingbirds, Racket, UMI, Wendy Matthews and The Screaming Jets.

After a 10-year hiatus, during which Murphy sold his musical assets, he returned to the industry to form new companies. Petrol Electric Record was launched in 2001 (INX signed with the label in 2008) and in 2014 Murphy Rights Management. In 2018, he took on another Australian sibling act, the country group The Bucklis.

Sarah, Lachlan and Molly Buckley said, “Chris is our guardian from the day we met him and he will remain for the rest of our lives.” “With everyone who was blessed to have blessed him – the power, passion, guidance and love he ignited is forever. We are with our best friends, greatest champions and mentors on this earth. But very grateful to walk. His soul and light will always be in and around us. “

Most recently, he was developing a retirement community for musicians and music industry professionals in New South Wales. Speaking of the project in 2019, Murphy explained: “There are a lot of people who are getting older. And, what are these people going to do? They have been working in a very creative industry all their lives; What are you going to do now that you don’t have a job? Sit in a quiet retirement village with people you don’t know or share common interests with? … The people in retirement villages, as we speak, are the people who have built this bloody country. Trademen, all kinds of people who lived in an era where you really had to work. “

Murphy is survived by his wife Caroline; Children Steve, Jerry, Jack, Louis and Charlie; And grandchildren Asher, Samantha, Bella, Axel, Harley and Reuben; His mother Janice; And sisters Charan and Tanya.

The family says Murphy was “passionate about agriculture, horse breeding, pigeon, surfing and rugby. His competitive spirit, seen on the polo field and ice hockey rink, was alive until the end as he fought mantle lymphoma. “He requested that, in exchange for flowers, the trees be gifted” to build an everlasting and ever-growing monument to Chris’s beloved Ballina estate “. For information, contact [email protected]

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