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Originally posted by Loosetongueinthemail:
[qb] I got the news on the radio this morning. They solemnly announced it and then played "Don't Dream It's Over."

Now I'm walking again
To the beat of a drum
And I'm counting the steps to the door of your heart
Only shadows ahead
Barely clearing the roof
Get to know the feeling of liberation and release[/qb]'s weird...I have moments where I wonder if I might be moving on to the acceptance stage of all this, but reading stuff along these lines proves that's not so.

I feel bad for those of you who have to explain this to your children...I can't imagine what that's gotta be like.

Dear Paul,

No one can really know the dark place you went to before you decided to leave us...the only thing we know is that we all love you.

I was 16 when I first saw you on stage in Adelaide during the first Crowded Houe concert tour back in the late eighties. I remember you head butting the microphone by mistake while playing the snare drum...then head butting it again on purpose...then head butting it became the bad joke of the bad infact that it still makes me laugh today...

All I remember thinking at the time when you were head butting was, "Gee, I hope that when I finish school, I can find a job that I love doing and get paid for it!" And so I have...I am a photographer now & loving it.

If only you knew the impact you had on me.


Until we meet again in the next life...may your soul rest in peace.

Love Nicki.
I have two funny Paul stories that happened recently. One was the other week he was walking past and he stopped for a chat- a friend who was sitting with me looked up and with a quizzical look said, "Hey I know, you're famous aren't you?!" Paul smiled and raised an eyebrow and said, "Well the fact that you had to ask answers that question." Then she figured out who he was and launched into a series of questions about CH song lyrics. Paul couldn't really shed much light on the song lyrics but with a cheeky grin he said, "I'll tell you one thing though- neither of them (the finns) were any good in the kitchen." With that he smiled and waved and was on his way.
The other recent memory was a series of conversations that we had about his purple suede shoes which he found again and was wearing. Something so simple- such little conversations- and- well it was always a pleasure to talk to him- that was the thing- he would always stop and say hello. Everyone in StKilda who knew Paul will miss him so much. We all felt so special knowing him- even if it was just for these little chats- I hope those who loved him are finding strength in eachother.
The outpouring of sadness and love is a testiment to the man, both as a musician and as a person. That he was loved by so many, shows us how much we can be touched by his talent and humor.

The death of Paul Hester is truly a tragedy, both on a personal level and for the world of music.

I have never felt so sad to hear the news of someone passing who has not been in my immediate family.

I have been watching the music channel Max as much as I can today, singing along but crying as well. From the freshfaced boy in the barn doing cartwheels to the jokester hamming it up with the Finn brothers at the session at the Arts Centre last year. We have lost a true treasure.

On a personal note, although I did not know him well, his children and mine go to the same school and kindergarten, so I used to see him regularly in the playground and at kinder when our kids were playing together. He was always really friendly and down to earth, never behaving like the cool dude the way some muso's can. I once commented that his felt hat reminded me of my grandfathers and we struck up a conversation about oldtimers and the old Aussie bushman and how they have all but disappeared, he explained how his Dad was a bushie and so was my Pop and we had a laugh about the funny things they used to do.

I also joked that he had been to my place but he didn't realise it. He looked at me funny and I explained that I lived in the house that Nick Seymour once had and he straight away started telling some great old yarns about the parties that had gone on in the house and how the 82 year old neighbour used to be invited in and she had a ball. At one stage Neil Finn, Eddie Rayner and Mark Seymour all lived in our street. Boy I wish I had lived here then.

Paul Hester was a true showman and a bloody nice bloke as well. He didn't have to talk to me and tell me those stories but he did and it is a great memory I have.

My heart goes out to his family, close friends and his little girls. I feel devistated and I was barely touched by his warmth. I cannot imagine how those close to him must be feeling.

I only hope some good will come out of this tragic event.

Well there is my first post and definitely not my last. I have been lurking here for a few days, not sure of whether I should say something or not. But as this forum seems to be so supportive I thought I would add my bit.
I will quietly mourn someone I never knew but for his infectious sense of fun and musical talent in a band I hold central to my life and love of music. I am very sad this is how it ends for you Paul but I will always remember you with much love.

To Paul's family and close friends I wish you strength in these sad hours.

Love Raelene xx
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.
Found out about this yesterday morning when my Mum told me. I nearly thought it was somekind of strange nightmare and jumped on the net and checked google only to find it was horrifyingly real. Then I thought to come here. And since then I've wanted to post, but really haven't known what to say. It still feels like a nightmare that someone as seemingly warm and talented could just leave the world in such a sad manner.
Not to be rude but I couldnt' believe the sheer dumbness of the remarks of some of the more obvious people in the media, like Molly Meldrum for example. Surely he's seen enough of the world and people to know that many talented artists and entertainers often have to deal with mental illness and depression of one form or another.
Being the "funny guy" often masks deeper feelings of emptiness, loneliness, or other negative emotions. Spike Milligan was another good example, as is Billy Connoly to some extent, who if you look a lot closer is a very serious and still quite troubled man.
My family has been touched by depression and mental illness profoundly for some time so I understand something of it, but like everyone here am very sad that someone so talented and clever (depression often comes with a quick and intelligent mind, which Paul clearly had) felt he had no option but to do what he did.
Paul Hester was one of the coolest, quick witted, intelligent, open minded, human beings in the world. I loved seeing him in Crowded House, but I particularly loved Hessie's Shed, where we could see more of not just his clever humour, but of his own often moody music and appreciation for other artists and entertainers. He introduced me to the Top Twins, got Reg and Pete and Noel Crombie to have a paint off, let loose the insane Raymond J back on TV again, and would talk with and listen to people often getting to slightly more serious things though his casual, approach.

Paul Hester was just plain cool.
We shall all miss him.
You know, I don't think I'll ever really reconcile with the fact that he's gone. He was so real...he was the one in the band that brought everything back down to earth. Like, yes, their songs were beautiful and introspective and deep...and then you had Paul up the back, making faces and being hilarious, bringing the songs back down to earth. He was so much a part of the personality of the band. I still can't believe it. Peace and love to Paul and his family.
I just wanted to pass along this touching tribute from the Ron Sexsmith mailing list:

Paul Hester was part of the one of the truly gifted musical ensembles of the
80s and 90s.

Ever the clown, he was the heart and cheery smile of Crowded House. Forever playing pranks on his fellow musicians both on and off stage, supporting Melbourne's music scene, talking to any and all who approached him on the street.

Often, a smile masks unimaginable pain and so it was with Paul.

He hanged himself in Elsternwick Park on the weekend, lat 46, leaving behind 2 young daughters. I know that park and it will forever stand as a memorial to his gift of bringing so much happiness to so many.

He gave so much happiness it would seem, he saved nothing for himself.

I'll miss you Paul. Thank you for everything.


That second-to-last line really has resonance. A sad truth that just cuts to the quick.

BTW, for those of you looking for comfort in music, you could do far worse than listening to Sexsmith's In a Flash, a rather poignant song that he wrote after he heard about Jeff Buckley's tragic death.

In a Flash

The end must come for some good reason
I've heard it said before
To everything a time and season
What was this season for?

In a flash, in a flash
There one moment and gone in a flash

Think of all the strangers you've encountered
In cafes or subway trains
Or lined up at this water fountain
One drink and on your way

In a flash, in a flash
There one moment and gone in a flash

When hopes are rising like a rocket
When cups are overflowing
When hearts were filled like children's pockets
It's then I'll hear your song

In a flash, in a flash
There one moment and gone in a flash

Our eyes can't help but disbelieve this
Bad news and even though
The end must come for some good reason
Right now I just don't know

In a flash, in a flash
There one moment and gone in a flash

There one moment...

Gone in a flash
I was shocked when I saw the news on tv text last night before going to bed. I rushed to, but the before I could post something the server became too busy.

I read a lot of discussions and news articles and it is really amazing how concerned every one is. It was good to see how many people were online in the community. Maybe the thought of hundreds (or thousands) of people around the world sharing their thoughts and emotions about Paul will be of some consolation to the friends and family.

Requiescat In Pace Paul.
Someone has suggested to me that Neil does not have bipolar as I had always been led to believe. Whether it's true or not, Neil has had problems with depressive thoughts and I apologise if I got that fact wrong, but all I can say I was misinformed. Anyway sorry, I don't want to get sidetracked from talking about Paul.
And we may never meet again�.� (Throw your arms around me- Hunters and Collectors).
When i was working at Moores in Balaclava (St Kilda), there used to be this funny bloke with a permanent dumb struck smirk on his face. He would wander up and down Carlisle street making conversation with the odd person at the coffee house beside the train station.
It�s not this guy who i miss. Its the guy with the feverish smile staring out of the Woodface Cd insert, the snare in the background of �Whispers and Moans� that used to herald through the rooftops of each of my bedrooms from the time i was 13, it�s the clown mucking around with his brushes during �Sister Madly� at the Farewell to the World concert i had taped in 1996 and filed awayfor repetetive watchinguntil the tape wore thin and eventually gave up the ghost.
What is it about our favourite bands that when a member dies, we feel the loss too? i think by and large that so much of the lyrics, tones and rhythms resound and echo out of our teenage years/young adulthood that they almost form part of our innermost chore. We resound with the lyrics, the driving guitar shouting out the joy, anger, silliness, and love we feel inside. They are our voice, the ones we fall asleep too.
So for the final time ever.. goodnight Paul Hester- rest in peace.
This is so sad. I dont think any of us can quite believe it.
I was just flicking around the channels on pay-tv this morning when I came across a Crowded House video on the Max channel.Brilliant I thought, then i noticed a logo at the top of the screen that said "In loving memory of Paul".
My heart just sank to my feet.

We love you Paul

Love can make you weep
Can make you run for cover
Roots that spread so deep
Bring life to frozen ground

Something so strong
Could carry us away
Something so strong
Could carry us today
What a devastating shock. My initial disbelief is slowly giving way to reluctant acceptance. I will never forget EXACTLY where I was when I heard the news of Paul's untimely death. It was one of those defining moments.

Unfortunately I never got the chance to meet him but what great memories I will treasure forever....those crazy on-stage antics and that cheeky wit which made me love him so much. I will treasure my signed cards and pictures from the Crowded House fan club all those years ago along with memories of him driving around Melbourne in that pale blue old car. Not to mention a little Melbourne Uni gig many years ago, where thankfully, I took heaps of photos.

He was and always will be my favourite. He may be gone but he will NEVER be forgotten....thank you for being YOU Paul! The world is a lesser place without your laughter, mayhem and beautiful music. Crowded House songs will never sound the same again...(it's the harmonies getting to me at the moment)... Frowner Perhaps one day that will pass, I hope so. Rest in peace my favourite are irreplacable...may you have found the peace you were silently looking for.

Sincere thoughts go out to family members, Neil, Tim, Nick, Peter and the many other friends in his life. What an enormous loss.

Love Natalie xxxxxxxxxx(long-time Paul devottee!)
My daughter and myself went to the Royal Albert hall last night to see the Finn Brothers we thought the concert may have been cancelled.. what can I say it was a very poinant, we were all there as Neil Finn said feeling the same way shocked and very sad from the news of Paul Hester.. When they started they had 3 microphones and a little snare drum set up on the stage and Neil and Tim came on then Nick appeard to and played some of the greatest of all there records as Crowded House ...It was a wonderful feeling of family and togetherness god bless you Paul and your family and thank you for the music.
Originally posted by ash1296:
[qb]Crowded House songs will never sound the same again...(it's the harmonies getting to me at the moment)... Frowner [/qb]
I'm just finding it odd that the song that I'd loved throughout my whole life, the song they're best known for here in the U.S., is now the song that's making me cry every time I hear it. I don't like that, as it was just a few weeks ago in particular that that song was really connecting with me on a happy level (seriously, I find it very bizarre that a lot of us have been stating how we've just been watching things with this band or listening to some of their songs or whatever within the last few weeks-that's a bit spooky). And now...

You say the harmonies are what's affecting you right now-it's been the lyrics that are getting at me in particular. Even if the song I'm listening to doesn't deal with the subject of death, there's still one line that can just get to me...

Originally posted by ash1296:
[qb]Perhaps one day that will pass, I hope so. [/qb]
I hope so, too.

How desperately sad and lonely he must have been. I know from experience that if you are in that kind of state you can't reach out to anyone anymore, so, no, we couldn't have done anything more for him. We all have to accept that sometimes you just can't help people, much as you love them. No one is to blame, and least of all Paul.
It's so very, very sad and it's all I have been thinking about all night. I hope the concerts will go on next week and that somehow we can turn it into a tribute to Paul. It hardly needs saying, but Neil (and Tim), if you are going to postpone the concerts you have our full blessing!
My condolences to his family and I wish everyone involved a lot of strength and wisdom.
To Pauls Family, The Finns and his closest friends, My family offers their condolences.
May I say thanks for his contribution to the enrichment of our lives through the music he shared. I am truly, deeply saddened by the loss.

We have all been so lucky to have known his music and public persona, how lucky are those who have shared his life?

Ian Watson and Family
Hi Guys

A few thopughts from a Pommie Fan in London.

This is my first and probably my last post on here, but I could not let the tragic events of the last few days go past without saying something.

I've seen CH many times and they have come to mean something huge in my life. Whenever I was down, depressed in love whatever Neil's words had a knack of touching my inner soul and giving me a little strength, comfort, whatever.

Paul's stage performances were awesome and belied a massive depressive problem that I think we all knew he suffered from. It's amazing that some oif the great creatives often suffered from something similar. However, for me his antics and banter were the focal point of a CH show and he and Neil had me in stiches many times.

We often forget he was also a great technical drummer, with a lovely 'tom-tom' based sound all of his own.

I often hoped I'd see a Crowdies re-union, but alas that's not ever gonna happen right now.

For me, my lasting memory of Hessie will be the moment in the Sydney vid when he wipes away a tear and after DD when he and Neil hug.

A great man that will be sadly missed.

Incidentaly, to give you all some comfort, Rugby is my main passion and I post a lot of a rugby bored and, as a lot of Aussies and Kiwis also post on it, there's been a lot of sadness expressed there too.

Here's a link and I wish you all the best.

I'm off the the show tonight and I hoipe they give the bugger a good sending off.


Planet Rugby
I'm friends with one of the engineers who worked with crowded house. He had this to say about paul's death.

" I'm shattered myself. I did monitors for Crowded Houses first tour, and even made it into a video clip or two.
Those who climb to the highest places have the furthest to fall they say. And that certainly seems to be the case with Paul. I don't think I have met anyone who was quite like Paul, amazing musician, and complete nut case. The greatest bunch of people to work with etc., etc., etc.
Some have said that he hasn't been happy for quite awhile, marriage break up etc. and that he was very depressed lately. He made many attempts to get other bands and projects happening, but after "mega" success, how do you rate anything else, not easily I would imagine.
He will be sadly missed, but he will be with folks that will love him now.
Hope your well mate, life goes on you know. God I sound like the old hippie sage don't I? "
I hope you don't mind me joining your forum, I found the link in the Magne F forum and I just wanted to say how shocked and saddened I was to hear of the death of Paul Hester. I was always a big fan of Crowded House and my biggest regret is never getting to see them live. I am currently in 'recovery' from clinical depression, and events like this hit home hard - I'm sorry he didn't make it through as I have. Kindest regards, nicola, uk
When I heard the news, I sucked in my breath and time stood still. It has been like losing a close and trusted friend, and even now, I have to shake my head back to reality as it is so so difficult to believe and comprehend.

I have been reading the messages since I heard early Monday morning, but I could not find the words. Even now, I just cannot express the devastation I feel for him, for his family, for those who knew him, for all of us who have had him in our hearts for so long.

He has to know just how much he is loved
I've been away for work for months now and even though I have felt homesickness from time to time it hasn't hit me this hard since the news of the weekend.

It's just so strange - the music he made, especially with Spilt Enz and Crowded House has become part of the soundtrack of my youth and it feels like now some of that is gone forever. And to not be in my own hometown (Melb) to mourn the loss makes me just so sad. Thank godness for this forum to enable everyone far and wide to come together and reach out.

I'm trying to hold back the tears for I know if I start I don't know if I can stop. Please look out for one another, hug your loved ones and talk to each other.

Again - we will miss you Paul and my thoughts are with the family and Tim, Neil, Mark, Nick, Peter (take care of yourself) and the extended FRENZ family.
Frowner I'm so very sad to hear this news. I was a mad teenage Split Enz fan in the 1980's and later of Crowded House. I feel that a wonderful piece of my youth has disappeared with Paul's passing.

Grief is such an intense emotion and I have found everyone's messages to be a source of comfort and support.

I also suffer from Depression and Paul's death has made me realise how important it is to take this condition seriously and to seek help when I need it.

My condolences to Paul's family and friends.
Saw the news on the website yesterday and registered with the site because I felt i just had to say something. I never saw Paul in concert, unfortunately, as he left the band just before they came to Britain for their Together Alone Tour but always felt a great affection for him through the music and what information I got through video footage and interviews etc. It is a great legacy for him that someone I never met can make me and so many other people feel such loss at this tragic end to a life. My heart goes out to his family and all those who loved him, there were many.

"I don't pretend to know what you want, but I offer love"
You never know what you've got 'till it's gone.

I don't need any introduction - I'm just like everyone else on this board: a fan, shocked beyond belief - at the personal impact of a musician most of us never met, but now know what his mammoth talent and light-hearted antics meant to us.

It didn't hit me until this afternoon - while watching musicmax's seemingly endless vault of concerts and videos. Songs that we all know by heart are now heart-breaking. Lyrics that we can recount without effort are so totally poignant.

The soundtrack of my generation is now too painful to hear.

Someone earlier drew the analogy to the impact of the death of John Lennon. How apt - both taken from us too suddenly, too young and too universally adored.

Hessie, you were one of a kind. Gonna miss you.


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