The stories all start in one of two ways yet the ending is always the same.
Michael Hutchence entertained millions of people but his true legacy is told by the thousands and thousands of individuals he met.
So on that first meeting – whether you approached him or he approached you – he would look you straight in the eye, repeat your name on introduction and the room suddenly seemed empty of everyone but you.
As long as you were polite, of course. Michael was a man of manners.
Thanks to the online community of fans who have shared their memories of a close encounter with Hutch, we know that the first impression was universally generous. Unless you were a paparazzi photographer.
At a backstage meet and greet, a doorstop at the hotel or gig or a random crossing of paths, the lead singer of INXS appeared to welcome any opportunity to engage with humankind.
And engage he did. Those who shared an intimate relationship with the enigmatic entertainer evidence the fierce loyalty Michael inspired among friends and fans by having kept their memories sacred since his death.
Yet even those whose acquaintance with Michael was brief remember its every detail.
Those occasions were never as brief as the cursory and rushed handshake, photo or scrawled signature which suffices as communication with the fans these days.
The most time-monitored introductions to Michael invariably involved a few minutes conversation and ended with a hug. That's the same ending.
Perhaps that is the reason so many who loved Michael and his INXS brothers have made comment of their egalitarian regard whether you be famous or fan. Bono or Bill, Kylie or Karen, these men wore their down-to-earth Australianness on their sleeve.
Consider in Michael's case that this was the behaviour of a bona fide rock star, a man who fronted a band to command the world's greatest stages.
A performer whose liquid leonine stalk punctuated the ebb and flow of the concert; whose tousled curls shrouded one eye while exposing a daring glare from the other; and whose easy grin of amusement could captivate thousands in a capacity crowd.
On stage, Michael was the pure embodiment of the rock'n'roll frontman. He weaved the same spell as Jagger, Morrison, Daltrey and company, the masters of the alchemy of sex, charisma, poetry, bravado and danger.
So many amazing gigs from the unforgettable Wembley Stadium stand at the height of INXS's success to the sexually-charged sweatfests of their endless Australian pub tours, Hutch's power to connect with an entire room was undisputed.
Off stage, he was rarely the centre of attention, retiring to a corner of the party with preferably one, maybe two people, listening intently.
When Michael responded, the well-travelled, much-read, inquisitive and intelligent man was revealed.
Whether a discussion about the arts of the family, his open-ness about his own opinions and feelings and curiosity about yours was remarkable for someone for whom success afforded entrée to the elite, the realms of the rich and famous from the South Of France to New York, from Sydney to South Africa.
He was also king of the after party, a gregarious and generous host who probably hosted more than his fair share of early morning soirees in his hotel room.
Michael was a gypsy, partly by design, partly because of the vagaries and demands of the rock'n'roll life.
Having been brought up in Australia, Hong Kong and the US, eventually also living in London and France, he was rarely settled, seemingly preferring to define his environment by people rather than place.
Like any human whose life story is cut short, Michael Hutchence is remembered by those who didn't know him by his myriad parts.
For those who knew him, the sum was so much larger.