From the land of the living, to the air and sky...
March 27, 2005 10:10 PM   Subscribe

Paul Hester, Aussie drummer of such antipodean bands as Split Enz and Crowded House (as well as occasional television performer), has committed suicide at 46.
posted by scody (41 comments total)
I've spent most of last night and today in shock. I just can't believe it.
posted by aki at 10:14 PM on March 27, 2005

Terrible news.
posted by jenleigh at 10:39 PM on March 27, 2005

Really sad, and somewhat unbelievable, he always seemed so cheerful (not that that is ever a good indicator).

I had almost the exact same FPP done when I heard the news, but Jrun not my friend...
posted by bdave at 10:45 PM on March 27, 2005

Awful, awful news.

posted by TheDonF at 10:59 PM on March 27, 2005

posted by allaboutgeorge at 11:00 PM on March 27, 2005

This seems somehow spookily connected to Tim Finn's melancholic guest spot on The Wiggles, performing the Split Enz' controversial "Six Months in a Leaky Boat." Quite a good rendition, actually, and true to the original, except for the pirate noises.
posted by underthehat at 11:05 PM on March 27, 2005

so much to say, I don't even know where to begin.
posted by whatnot at 11:09 PM on March 27, 2005

Very sad. The park where it happened just down the road from me.
posted by Onanist at 11:10 PM on March 27, 2005

Occurrences like this give my user name a rather sinister taste.
posted by foreverycomplexproblemthereisasolutionthatiswrong at 11:34 PM on March 27, 2005

Very sad, I enjoyed their work together.
posted by AMWKE at 11:39 PM on March 27, 2005

I just read about it. So utterly sad.
posted by Dizzy Bint at 12:48 AM on March 28, 2005

One of the theories about Together Alone's Black and White Boy was that it was about Paul. That theory (and those lyrics) hold a lot more weight for me after hearing this awful news.

I saw one of the last Crowded House shows in the States before he quit the band. I remember reading about the main reason for his departure (wanting to be home with his family as his newborn daughter grew up) and thinking that his priorities seemed quite right to me. It's a shame that he's gone.
posted by timing at 1:05 AM on March 28, 2005

I just heard this from one of my friends, who auditioned for the spot in Split Enz that Paul Hester got.

Didn't he go awol during a North American tour with Crowded House? Maybe this hints at some kind of underlying instability.

Bad news, and I'm sorry to hear it.
posted by Wolof at 1:06 AM on March 28, 2005

posted by djeo at 1:30 AM on March 28, 2005

That is so sad. By a totally eerie coincidence I'm currently listening to 'Woodface' by Crowded House.
posted by isthisthingon at 1:40 AM on March 28, 2005

Terribly sad. I remember meeting the band at a signing in Seattle, at which they all drew little cartoons and jokes on my poster and album cover... they spent so much time with each person their that their management finally had to come out and tell them to speed things up, because the line was halfway down the block. They were all very funny and friendly, but Paul especially.
posted by litlnemo at 2:24 AM on March 28, 2005

And now I just saw the title to this post, and it is almost too much to bear.

I just saw that I mistyped "their" for "there" above... but it is irrelevant, really...
posted by litlnemo at 2:29 AM on March 28, 2005

posted by anda L. at 3:23 AM on March 28, 2005

posted by amberglow at 5:00 AM on March 28, 2005

I was fortunate to see many Crowded House shows and Paul was always great fun live. He was funny as hell and an underrated drummer to boot. He was a restrained drummer when the songs called for it (which is many CH songs), but he could also drum with great power and flair on songs like "Love You Til The Day I Die" (which live was a monstrously big song). A sad loss indeed.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 5:10 AM on March 28, 2005

I've written and rewritten a few sentences about ten times but this seems to sum it up best:

posted by kittyb at 6:15 AM on March 28, 2005

Fuck. This is so awful. They just said on the radio that he split up with his partner. Not that that 'means' anything. Jesus guys, if you think one of your mates is in trouble, lend a hand, please. Too many times have I seen this. Now the news reports have links to suicide hotlines.

/God this is killing me :(
posted by bdave at 6:24 AM on March 28, 2005

Shame. I always like "I Got You."
posted by jonmc at 6:47 AM on March 28, 2005


Horrible, horrible news.
posted by papercake at 6:57 AM on March 28, 2005

it is nice, at least, to see such an outpouring of love & regret here; CH were and are my favorite band. sad news indeed.
posted by jonson at 7:03 AM on March 28, 2005

posted by ben-o at 7:22 AM on March 28, 2005

I'm really sorry for his kids. As much as I'm sad that he saw a need to do this, I'm really of a mind that when kids are involved, suicide is really chickenshit. I've Been a fan of the Finn bros. since the earliest days, and I even have (by coincidence-- I'm a dad) the Wiggles video with Hestor's appearance. My favorite piece of his drumming has to be When You Come from Temple of Low Men. Sad, sad day, indeed.
posted by Devils Rancher at 7:25 AM on March 28, 2005

(jonmc, he wasn't in Split Enz for "I Got You." He joined a couple of years later for the final Enz lineup, then continued on to Crowded House. If you remember "Message to My Girl" -- he was on that.)

I remember some amazing standup drumming in a performance of "This is Massive" at the Bumbershoot show in 1987. That was such a great show, it really was. Of course, every CH show I saw was pretty damned great. I believe they ended the show with a cover of "Whole Lotta Love", then a version of "Better Be Home Soon" that gave me chills. I bootlegged the show and listened to that tape for years until it finally disappeared...
posted by litlnemo at 8:17 AM on March 28, 2005

posted by dazed_one at 8:49 AM on March 28, 2005

One of my great musical regrets is that I never got to see CH live (in part because I've lurrrved Neil since I was about 11, but also because Hester's antics were so legendary). He was, as Slack-a-Go-Go says, an extraordinary and often criminally underrated drummer (especially here in the states, where CH is too often remembered as a one-hit wonder). What a gutwrenchingly sad reminder that clinical depression can be fatal.
posted by scody at 10:52 AM on March 28, 2005

posted by joe lisboa at 10:53 AM on March 28, 2005

CH was never a one-hit wonder with me either, scody.

this is so sad.

posted by killy willy at 11:51 AM on March 28, 2005

"in part because I've lurrrved Neil since I was about 11"

scody, me too. Only I was 14, I think. That was why I first listened to Crowded House -- because it was Neil's new band. But of course, it was more than that, as I found out soon enough.
posted by litlnemo at 11:54 AM on March 28, 2005


Met him once in the late 80s when I worked at a radio station in San Diego 'cuz the station held a big contest to win a house party with Crowded House. (See, Crowded House would be there... In your house... Which would be crowded! Get it? It would be a crowded house? Watching Crowded House? Bloody brilliant!) Anyhow, he & I talked a bit & I remember he seemed nice. Sad to hear the news. I just can't imagine taking the dogs out for a walk and then hanging one's self from a park tree... so very tragic.
posted by miss lynnster at 1:52 PM on March 28, 2005

posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:45 PM on March 28, 2005

I know, jon. all day today "I Got You" has been running in my head.

"I don't know why sometimes I get frightened..."
posted by amberglow at 4:50 PM on March 28, 2005

I've had the dark and giddy rockabilly brushes of "Sister Madly" with me all day. Sad to see your light go out, Paul.
posted by CrunchyGods at 7:14 PM on March 28, 2005

don't dream
it's over
posted by obiwanwasabi at 4:11 AM on March 29, 2005

How sad. : (
posted by SisterHavana at 9:42 AM on March 29, 2005

Tim and Neil played the Royal Albert Hall last night, with Nick Seymour flying in from Ireland to join them in tribute to Paul. *sigh*
posted by scody at 11:28 AM on March 29, 2005

Italian Plastic (Paul Hester)

I bring you plates from Rome
You say they look fantastic
I say we're having fun
Nothing like that Italian plastic
I bring you rocks and flowers
You say they look pathetic
You pick me up at night
I don't feel pathetic

When you wake up with me
I'll be your glass of water
When you stick up for me
Then you're my Bella Bambina

I say we're on a trip
Looks like we're on vacation
I say we're having fun
In our little constellation

Then I'll be your Bella Bambino, your man on the moon,
I'll be your little boy running with that egg on his spoon,
I'll be your soul survivor, your worst wicked friend,
I'll be your piggy in the middle, stick with you till the end
posted by psmealey at 11:23 AM on April 9, 2005

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