Funloving Drummer of Crowded House Fame
I remember Paul Hester from his appearances in Crowded House videos and from his interviews on Farewell to the World, the video documentation of the band's final appearance in front of 300.000 people in front of the Sydney Opera House. He always seemed to be a genuinely jolly hellraiser and there are plenty of anecdotes of his genuine ability to take the piss of his more sombre bandmembers, i.e. the time when he entered the stage naked during one of Neil Finn's solo numbers on one of their American tours.
I was not able to find a lot of biographical material on him: according to the few scraps that are floating around on the Interweb, Paul was born in Melbourne on January 8, 1959 to legendary Bushman Mulga Mike Hester and his wife Ann, a Jazzdrummer. Paul's mum encouraged him early to learn the drums (who can say that from his parents?) and by 1982 he joined legendary Kiwi band Split Enz, then at the height of their international fame. After Tim Finn had left Split Enz, Neil Finn formed Crowded House with Hester and Nick Seymour, becoming world famous in the process. Hester quit the band in 1994 because he got fed up with the incessant touring, but joined Crowded House once again for the final concert.
After the demise of Crowded House Hester focused on his wife and two daughters, but continued to record and produce and head his own TV Show, Hessie's Shed.
Yesterday Paul Newell Hester was found dead in a park in Melbourne.
Apparently he commited suicide.