Founding INXS member Andrew Farriss has been busy promoting his 2021 debut solo album, a self-titled effort that sees the multi-instrumentalist and songwriter putting aside his famous band’s funky modern-rock sound in favor of tunes with strong country and Americana influences.
Farriss, who lives on a cattle farm in his native Australia, says his lifestyle has helped him relate to people who reside in the rural Southern and Southwestern U.S., and to embrace the music that’s popular in those regions.
“These experiences for me drew me more and more into where I’m now in, which is sort of country rock, Americana, folk music,” he explains to ABC Audio, “because I feel I’ve connected with communities that aren’t city or suburban people. I understand now. I get it, now [that] I’ve lived out there and I’ve done it.”
Andrew also notes that additional inspiration for the songs on his solo album from a horseback riding trip came from he took with his wife a few years ago along the Mexican border in Arizona and New Mexico. Farriss says he became fascinated with the history of the Western U.S. and began writing tunes that drew parallels between the area and his own country.
“I started thinking more and more and more lyrically about how to draw in both from Australiana and Americana, and join them together,” he explains. “I could sing songs about bushrangers, as we call ’em, or outlaws, in Australia, I could sing about outlaws in America. But it was the cultural fusion…that was a powerful thing.”
Farriss tells ABC Audio that when he plays live, he does include some INXS songs alongside his solo material, noting that when he performs tunes by his old band, “I like to rearrange them.”
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