Thursday, June 17, 2004

'Rock Star' to find singer for INXS

Enquirer news services

Mark Burnett has found the band for whom he's going to find a singer.

Former chart-toppers INXS, who have been without a permanent lead singer since Michael Hutchence's death in 1997, will be at the center of Burnett's Rock Star, an unscripted series that seeks to find a front-person for the group.

Like American Idol, Rock Star will conduct a wide search for would-be singers, with finalists competing for a chance to record an album with INXS.

Viewers will get a say in the voting, as will the band itself. Burnett, the man behind Survivor, The Apprentice and The Restaurant, has yet to sell the show to a network.

"After Michael died, we wanted to search the world for a new singer but didn't know how we could effectively do that," Tim Farriss of INXS says on the band's Web site. "By having Mark and everyone at (Mark Burnett Productions) embrace the concept, we've now found a fantastic way to make that happen."

INXS hasn't recorded an album since Hutchence's death in 1997. They have played live gigs with the likes of Terence Trent D'Arby and toured and recorded two singles with Jon Stevens, former frontman for fellow Aussie band Noiseworks. Stevens left the band late last year to pursue his solo career.

Andrew Farriss, Tim's brother, calls Burnett "an amazing producer" and says the band is looking forward to collaborating with him.

"We are confident that together we are going to create something very different and very special," he says.

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