It is tragic that Paul Hester is no longer with us, as many others have said, he was a remarkable artist who gave us all great pleasure.
One memory I'd like to share is from 1994/5 when Crowded House played an afternoon gig in Palmerston North, NZ. The weather was fantastic and it was very much like a camp atmosphere. I'm not sure if it was Paul, Nick or Neil who suddenly decided to have members of the audience run a race (boys and girls, then men and women) around the outside of the Palmerston North showgrounds but Paul loved the idea and totally energised the audience with his unreal race commentary. The lucky winner of this race was welcomed on stage and gifted, amongst other things, Paul's drum sticks. Only Crowded House could do this, only Paul could make us all want to be outrageously silly, it was magic.
People like Paul are so important to us because they are so giving and honest and spontaneous and genuine - my impression of Paul, and I never met him, was that he was always in the moment, always committed to what was going on around him, always trying to create and not consume energy.
He was a vital part of a fantastic band, a much loved partner and father, son and brother. My thoughts and aroha go out to his family.