My Sunday Song – “The Stairs” by INXS

For My Sunday Song #242, we are going to tackle one of my favorite tracks by the band called “The Stairs” off the band’s 1990 album ‘X’. It was the final single off the album and didn’t chart, but there was something about it that I fell in love with. They did end up releasing a live version of the song as a single for their 1991 Live album ‘Live Baby Live’ album.

The song is one that Michael thought was the most ambitious song he had ever written. And he might be right. I find the song to be a sad commentary on life in the big city. The cities are filled with so many people and all these buildings, but no one is communicating. No one is building a relationship. They casually pass each other in “the stairs” of their buildings and don’t say a word. Cities need to have more town squares like the small towns have so people can meet up and talk, build that relationship and make life better. And what I find most troubling about this song is that it is even more true today. With Facebook, Twitter and all these other so called social sites, we still are not truly social or communicating. You’re posting for the world to see how you want to be seen not who you really are. You are not actually saying anything that builds people up or to even build a relationship you are hiding behind a mask so no one truly sees you. This song makes me sad, but in a beautiful way.

Musically, it is a ballad and actually has a slow instrumental piece in the first minute that builds and builds until Hutchence comes in with the vocals. You can hear it in his voice how much this song means to him as he sings with such a tenderness and with such heart. It is songs like this that made me appreciate his greatness. When I think of great frontmen for a band, Michael is always on my list. There is a sadness to the music that comes through and matches with the lyrics. As I said earlier, it is sad but beautiful.

Give the song a listen and let me know what you think. Did you get out of what I did? I will post both the studio and live version so you can see which you like best. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a wonderful and Happy Sunday. And lastly, go build those relationships and bring back community.

“The Stairs”

In a room above a busy street
The echoes of a life
The fragments and the accidents
Separated by incidents

Listen to by the walls
We share the same spaces
Repeated in the corridors
Performing the same movements

Storey to storey
Building to building
Street to street
We pass each other on the stairs

Storey to storey
Building to building
Street to street
We pass each other on the stairs

Listen to by the walls
We share the same spaces
Repeated in the corridors
Performing the same movements

The nature of your tragedy
Is chained around your neck
Do you lead or are you lead
Are you sure that you don’t care

There are reasons here to give your life
And follow in your way
The passion lives to keep your faith
Though all are different, all are great

Climbing as we fall
We dare to hold on to our fate
And steal away our destiny
To catch ourselves
With quiet grace

Storey to storey
Building to building
Street to street
We pass each other on the stairs

Listen to by the walls
We share the same spaces
Repeated in the corridors
Performing the same movements

Storey to storey
Building to building
Street to street
We pass each other on the stairs

Written by Jon Farriss and Michael Hutchence

27 thoughts on “My Sunday Song – “The Stairs” by INXS

  1. Never heard this track before so I played the Wembley live version. Not a bad track actually. Hutchence was pretty crafty at lyrics but never got his due. I think one of the best set of words that came from him are ‘Heaven Sent’ That’s a great song…

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Here’s to building community for sure, John.
    One of the things I like most about wordpress is that it seems to be the exception when it comes to social media.
    Whereas on other platforms, I would never advise reading the comments & that the posts are for (as you said) how people want to be seen – with this community however, the reviews always seem genuine and on my site, my reviews are one thing but the community comments are usually the best part!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I’m down with building community. Think there’s one here too.
    For me X was my parting point with Inxs. Only just recently have I gotten the later albums too, and the early ones too, the ones I missed. So I only followed them through Listen like thieves to X. Missed a lot.
    Never did see them in concert.
    Do u have switch and original sin as well?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Another great track. I think X is a great album, but in terms of singles, it suffered off the back of Kick. Not because the songwriting wasn’t as good, but because Kick sorta established them as this great singles band. But they were more than that. Hutchence especially had a great awareness and his lyrics are often great. As Deke says, he doesn’t get credit for that.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I remember when I got it, we were in another town for a hockey tournament, killing time, and I saw the cassette somewhere and grabbed it and couldn’t put it back. Dad bought it. I played the hell out of that thing.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. My Dad’s the best, allaround. He didn’t buy stuff that often, like that, but he must’ve seen the look on my face! We won that tournament too, must’ve been the lift I needed!

            You know I was thinking about it too, that’s exactly how I got my cassette copy of Joshua Tree too. Away at some hockey tournament. (I played a lot of hockey. Man, I love that game). But those are the only two I can think of out or 11 years of hockey all winter.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Yeah, my dad would occasionally buy me something, but my mom broke down more and got me my first vinyl by ordering it from a TV commercial for The Monkees Greatest Hits. Still have it today.

              Like

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