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Kings Pond Shantymen sing out mainly in Hampshire and West Surrey, England. We perform shanties and other seafaring songs, interspersed with a few drinking songs and odd ditties. At Christmas we also sing carols. We aim for an authentic shanty style - unaccompanied male voices singing in harmony - on a good day.
Folk style nose-singing or ear-fingering is actively represssed and barbershop perfection is certainly not our aim. What we like is to sing and drink a pint or two of beer, but not at the same time as it tends to waste the beer.
When Johnny Comes Down to Hilo is a typical boistrous example:
Lower Lights - is not a shanty in fact - but is from our huge repertoire of maritime misery:
Our name originates from the King's Pond in Alton Hampshire and therefore reflects both our nautical incompetence and our base of operations.
We practise every Monday from 8.00 - 10.00pm during school term time and you are welcome to join us if you want to try out shanty singing or to get a flavour of our character before making a booking. We are very grateful to various pubs, currently The Sandrock in Farnham, The Three Horseshoes at Worldham and The Red Lion at Oakhanger for providing quiet(!) rooms in which to practise. Contact The Captain for details as we move about a bit.
Practice night invariably involves a fair amount of laughter and ribaldry - see The Craic.
We can be quite well behaved in public and will accept bookings for dinners, product launches, parties, weddings, civic receptions, fetes, club nights, pub nights, beer festivals and the like.
We were delighted with a recent note from Councillor Pam Jones, Alton Town Mayor saying: "Thank you to the Kings Pond Shanty men for coming along to entertain us so well at my Mayoral reception. It was great to hear the complimentary comments afterwards."
For street events we collect donations to various charities such as Save The Children, British Red Cross and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution - if you give us enough money we'll even stop singing! Our generous listeners have contributed thousands of pounds in donations over the years.