TRIO:  Men Overboard ("Za Bortom!")

Banner image The great singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell once said of her classic song The Circle Game, "This song isn't good with just one lonely voice." That's also very true of sea shanties and other maritime folk music. That's why, in 2016, three "senior officers" of the former Shanty Choir MIR decided to spin off a trio from the larger group to concentrate on the "new old sea songs" of singer-songwriter Robert Palomo.

What's in a name?

The trio are all long-time expatriate residents of Saint-Petersburg, Russia. The group's name comes from the Russian sailor's warning of a man overboard: Chelovek za bortom! For English speakers, the name Men Overboard! whimsically delivers the same basic idea. What's actually "overboard" is the fun people are having discovering the "new old sea songs" rendered by this trio.

"Great fun - refreshingly different!" - Derek F. (Suffolk, UK)
"Comfortably familiar, but not the same old songs!" - Joyce B. (London, UK)

Meet the Crew

Photo of Peter DysonPETER DYSON (Vocals, Percussion) A Yorkshireman living in Saint-Petersburg and much taken with both, he "brexited" the UK 22 years ago to join Tishchenko's composition class in the Saint-Petersburg Conservatory.

A career civil servant in the British Home and Foreign Offices until early retirement, he is now leader of The English Element, (a madrigal group), singer in Men Overboard! (trio), and Master of Ceremonies of The Club of Singing Diplomats (Moscow).

Photo of David HicksDAVID HICKS (Vocals)
David came to St. Petersburg in 1995 to work in the British Consulate and, in the words of a former colleague, "must have forgotten the way home".

He loves choral singing, and also performs with Peter in The English Element as well as a local classical choir. To the Men Overboard trio he adds his clear, quintessentially English tenor to the vocal mix, complete with authentic accent that helps link the group's original material with the tradition from which it stems. It was David who coined the group's name.

Photo of Robert PalomoROBERT PALOMO (Guitar, Banjo, Vocals) A multi-instrumentalist with a conservatory degree, roots in the folk, rock, and country music of his native USA, and a passion for acoustic instruments and truly awful "island" shirts, Robert is the songwriting engine behind the Men's unique "new old sea songs", which he also records as a solo artist.

He moved to St. Petersburg in 1996, intending to spend one year and then return to the States. He’s now living proof that Burns was right about the plans of mice and men!

Video

The trio performing at a Pub Session of the 2017 Harwich International Sea Shanty Festival. Enjoy!

How to Recruit this Crew

Men Overboard! / Za Bortom! is a great addition to any sea shanty or folk music festival. Besides being an entertaining act, they bring that elusive "something new and different" that make a festival truly memorable for its patrons. Now booking for the 2019 festival season and beyond. Please contact us here.