“I’m riding a different horse now…”
Andrew Farriss began his career as a multi-instrumentalist in one of the biggest Australian acts of all time, INXS. By their third album, Andrew Farriss along with the charismatic singer Michael Hutchence, became the primary songwriters and composers of all their music, spearheading one of Australia’s most successful exports, while creating music history with hits like ‘Need You Tonight’ and ‘Never Tear Us Apart’…
Two decades later, whilst having worked since with acts such as Yothu Yindi, Tom Jones, Tania Kernaghan, and Jenny Morris (to name a few) Andrew Farriss is releasing his first solo effort, country single ‘Come Midnight’.
“It’s a song that I had written the original guitar parts a long time ago. And it just sort of stayed with me.” Andrew originally wrote the song after making the hit album ‘Kick’ with INXS. However, in recent years, Farriss’s wife Marlina was diagnosed with breast cancer, and he says over the years the song has become an ode to his wife “…My wife Marlina used to use it as a wake-up song because she liked the song. She has been a tremendous support.” The track highlights how midnight is the time when you reflect on the people who are the most important to you. Although, Farriss remarks this comes with occasional reality-check “…[Marlina’s] brilliant because she’ll just go, “That sucks, Andrew.”
Last October, Andrew Farriss returned to the stage performing a handful of INXS classics with Jon Stevens, as well as songs with a country outfit, The Davidson Brothers, “That was stranger than fiction to me, the timing of it because it just happened to be held in the northwest where I live now. I live right out in the middle of nowhere. I’m experiencing like a lot of other people probably the worst drought in living memory right now. And it affects communities. It affects everybody. And I’m seeing it, and it’s real. And so for me, what I’m realizing is that the irony of this is I probably wouldn’t have never had a platform to support like the Hay Mate concert unless I was going through a drought. …So I thought, “How ironic is that?” whatever you believe. I still call that destiny … I couldn’t have thought of a better reason apart from that I’m enjoying playing music again.”
Speaking about the forthcoming album the new single belongs to“…I’ve tried not to clean everything up too much on my album. In other words, some of it could have almost been recorded in the garage.”Farriss describes a new appreciation for keeping it ‘raw’ when recording in recent times“[the other day] I was listening to Come Midnight, and I thought, “Ooh, that guitar part’s a little bit wonky just there” And then I thought, “You know what? Great.”
“I realised, you know what, I’m not going to try and make an album like everybody else. What I’m going to try to do is to, if I can, is some limitations and yet some very modern technology at the same time. But it’s more about that I wanted to tell stories, like these old days.” Andrew says the album is inspired by 19th century. “I invented these sort of fictitious characters that could have been real in the 19th century. In fact, a couple of the characters are real, real characters.”
“I think country music as a broad statement really is the last refuge of a traditional songwriter. A refuge for people because everything else has gone crazy.” Andrew remarks on the current climate of music and the world more broadly. “…I just want to enjoy the ride. That’s what I tell everyone around me. I’m not just doing it to climb a mountain again because the mountain needs to be climbed. I’m doing it because I want to enjoy the climb”
“I’m riding a different horse now” Andrew Farriss laughs. “May the horse with you”
Andrew Farriss’s debut single ‘Come Midnight’ is available now. This piece was written before the release of the new release.