INXS MEMORABILIA: Manager of iconic Australian band and South Ballina resident, Chris Murphy, wants to have a permanent collection of INXS memorabilia in Ballina.
INXS MEMORABILIA: Manager of iconic Australian band and South Ballina resident, Chris Murphy, wants to have a permanent collection of INXS memorabilia in Ballina. Graham Broadhead

INXS manager reveals contents of the X Building

THE INXS museum project lives in the mind of music and multimedia entrepreneur Chris Murphy, who wants the project to be an X-shaped building near Ballina's airpoirt, an innovation hub that will feature the best of Northern Rivers business creativity.

Murphy said the INXS archive is currently on a secret location.

"I have been carrying these archives around for 30 years and they were in Barthgurt and then in a shed in Wagga," he said.

The chests containing the band's memorabilia were almost lost in a flood in Richmond (North Sydney) near the Hawkesbury River.

"The archives hold everything: thousands of press clippings, INXS' red vinyl, their 45s, INXS' first T-shirt, all the original retro-Tshirts, and plenty o photos that people have never seen of the band," he said.

"A couple of years ago I went looking through the chests and found images of INXS' Wembley concert, the whole day immortalised in images, and that's never come out and that's a book within itself.

"I've found demos of Never Tear us Apart, I don't know, thousands of items."

"In our little Ballina, which everyone underestimates just like Cupertino was just a cow paddock and then became Silicon Valley, in Ballina we could have a centre for innovation, not just for the Northern Rivers but for Australia," he said.

Murphy, who has been living in Ballina for the last three years, said the INXS Museum has morphed now into the X Building.

"The Building is very INXS focused, and it started with me asking myself: where am I going to put the INXS archive? But this has grown way beyond that, because I have been living in Ballina and I'm excited," he said.

"I don't think people really know all we have here."

Murphy was the manager of INXS from 1979 to 1995.

He has been in the industry for a long time: aged 16, he joined his mother in running the family's theatrical booking agency a year after his father passed away.

Murphy invested heavily in digital broadcasting in the 1980s and via Petrol Records, he has launched some of the most interesting collection of music of the last 20 years, including the The Music, The Sex, The City collection in the early 2000s.

Chris Murphy is very excited about the reception he has received from Ballina Shire Council for the X Building project.

"I spoke to Ballina Council today, they are great. David Wright is a fantastic mayor. The two Pauls, (General Manager) Paul Hickey and (commercial services and airport manager) Paul Tsikleas have been great supporters of this. They should get a little gold medal."

"The X Building, I want it to be a place of inspiration," he said.

"I want to have school excursions come into that building from as far away as Perth if they want and all we'll charge will be a gold coin, that will go back to the community. It will not go to INXS or to me.

"I want kids to walk upstairs and whether they go to the Rock and Roll Cafe, the Song Room, or maybe a little the Fashion Institute or a Virtual Reality laboratory, and some young people driving some great food businesses, I want those kids from this region that are in High School to be inspired.

"Everyone is talking about IXS, and yes, INXS is the name on the marquee but I want the X Building to be here in 100 years."

Murphy said he has already been asked to do an X building somewhere else, but he is not going to say where.

"I already had two major companies calling asking 'Chris, where is my office in the X building?'" he said.

"I want to have input from the community on how to make this project a place to showcase the best of our best."