Born in Kew, Victoria on July 4th 1958 Kirk Pengilly moved to Sydney and became best friends with fellow band member Tim Farriss. Their first band Guiness was a high school band in which Kirk was the principal songwriter and lead singer. But when The Farriss Brothers formed in 1977 he gave up the main vocalist responsibilities to Michael Hutchence.
Twenty years on and Kirk has a definitive place in INXS. As principle backing vocalist, saxophonist and guitarist, he contributes to a great deal of the music that INXS release. He has written, produced and performed numerous b-sides, most notably The Sax Thing from Shabooh Shoobah, Begotten and Six Knots from Listen Like Thieves, On The Rocks from KICK, The Other Side from X and Ashtar Speaks, Ptar Speaks and Light The Planet from Welcome To Wherever You Are. Also, Kirk was the creator of the rare Happy Christmas record sent to early '80's fanclub members in Australia and US. His main instrument though is the guitar. "My eldest brother, Drew, gave me a beat up acoustic guitar when I was about nine and I taught myself playing along to records," Kirk recalls. His position also sees him as the key publicity spokesperson, a role he doesn't take lightly. Kirk also holds the distinction of being the band's archivist, faithfully logging daily entries in diaries that date back to the beginning of INXS.
In 1982 Kirk became involved in a one-off EP project with the band, The Igniters. The following year Andrew Farriss, Garry Gary Beers and himself worked on the 12" release of Flaming Hands/Cast My Love. In 1987, Kirk appeared in the video You're Gonna Get Hurt released by Australian singer Jenny Morris, unrecognizable without his trademark glasses. In 1989 when the band was on a break, Kirk Pengilly along with Tim Farriss produced an album for local Sydney band Crash Politics. 1993 saw Kirk playing saxophone on Richard Clapton's album Distant Thunder, and he has also been a session guitarist for Shona Laing and saxophonist for Martin Plaza.
Kirk has one daughter, April, born in 1988 to his first wife Karen. In December 1993 Kirk married singer Deni Hines and both of them shared his terrace home in Potts Point. The marriage lasted a short time and the two parted ways in early 1995. During the Dirty Honeymoon tour of 1994, he sold his Cammeray home for around 1.3 million, monitoring the auction by phone from Los Angeles. These days Kirk is engaged to freelance DJ Louise Hegarty and talks are that the two will wed sometime in 1998. He has just bought a large farm in Kangaroo Valley and has become quite fond of digging his hands in the soil.
Who knows at this time what the future holds for Kirk. A well deserved break and time to heal is necessary before he and the rest of INXS can make any decision as to their future.
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