Suicide Blonde

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"Suicide Blonde"
Single by INXS
from the album X
B-side "Everybody Wants U Tonight"
Released 25 September 1990 (1990-09-25)
Format 7" single, 12" maxi, CD maxi
Genre Alternative rock, Power pop
Length 3:53
Label Mercury, XPRO
Writer(s) Andrew Farriss
Michael Hutchence
Producer(s) Chris Thomas
Certification Gold (RIAA)
INXS singles chronology
"Mystify"
(1989)
"Suicide Blonde"
(1990)
"Disappear"
(1990)

"Suicide Blonde" is the first single from the INXS album X. It reached the top 10 on the US Hot 100 (#9) and Australia (#2) in 1990 and reached a peak of #11 in the UK.

Writing and recording[edit]

The song was written by Michael Hutchence and Andrew Farriss of the group INXS, after the band had gotten back together after a year-long sabbatical in 1989. The song was named after a woman who had bleached her own hair because she had "dyed" by her own hand and who was "love devastation". It is rumoured that Hutchence's then-girlfriend, Kylie Minogue, gave him the inspiration for the title while working on her 1989 film The Delinquents. Minogue was required to dye her hair platinum blonde for the role and was quoted by Hutchence in an interview in '89 as saying "I'm going suicide blonde today."[citation needed]

The recording of "Suicide Blonde" showed some new and older influences on INXS. Jon Farriss's drums show the influence of dance music especially the acid house sounds popular in the UK. Similarly, the blues harp intro on the track, performed by Charlie Musselwhite, was sampled rather than recorded live.[citation needed] The main riff in the song is a simple rework of the driving funk riff in the band's 1984 single "Original Sin," produced by Nile Rodgers - same key, same riff. This has come to be known as Rodgers' signature riff and can be heard from the 1970s heyday of Chic ("Soup for One") to the mid 1980s Duran Duran pop hit "Notorious," also produced by Rodgers.

The track became poignant after Hutchence committed suicide on 22 November 1997, and his lover Paula Yates died of an overdose on 17 September 2000, after attempting suicide in 1998. Kym Wilson (with her then boyfriend Andrew Reyment the last people to see Michael alive) also became known as the "Suicide Blonde" in the tabloids.[citation needed]

Chart performances[edit]

The track was released in September 1990 throughout the world. In the US, the track reached a peak of #9 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topped both the modern rock and mainstream rock charts. A dance remix of the track received wide airplay on US top 40 stations, reaching the top 10 of the dance chart. In the UK, the track reached a peak of #11 while it reached #2 in their homeland of Australia1 and #1 in Canada.

Track listings[edit]

Charts[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "Suicide Blonde", in various singles charts Lescharts.com (Retrieved 10 April 2008)
  2. ^ a b "Single top 100 over 1990" (pdf) (in Dutch). Top40. Retrieved 12 April 2010. 
  3. ^ German Singles Chart Charts-surfer.de (Retrieved 10 April 2008)
  4. ^ Irish Single Chart Irishcharts.ie (Retrieved 10 April 2008)
  5. ^ UK Singles Chart Chartstats.com (Retrieved 10 April 2008)
  6. ^ a b c d Billboard Allmusic.com (Retrieved 17 September 2008)
  7. ^ 1990 Australian Singles Chart. aria.com. Retrieved 17 September 2008.
  • "INXS: X Marks the Spot" Rolling Stone Issue 590 1 November 1990 page 85

(1) US chart details from Allmusic.com UK chart details from Everyhit.com, Australian chart details from ARIA and Wikipedia INXS article.

External links[edit]