News October 6, 2020

Lisa Schouw of ARIA-nominated Girl Overboard passes

Lisa Schouw of ARIA-nominated Girl Overboard passes

Lisa Schouw, the acclaimed singer and songwriter behind the ARIA-nominated 90s band Girl Overboard, has passed away after a battle with cancer.

The band was best known for hits ‘I Can’t Believe’, ‘The Love We Make’ and ‘Permanent Friend’ for which they scored ARIA nominations for breakthrough artist, best single and best video.

Schouw and the band journeyed to the US and UK to further their careers.

In a Facebook tribute, former bassist John Favaro remembered her as “a talented and unique performer who always demanded the best from herself and her bandmates.”

Born in South Africa, Schouw’s family moved to Auckland when she was three.

Her first passion was classical ballet, but her rising career in New Zealand stopped after an ankle injury. She switched to journalism before moving to Australia in 1983.

“I guess I was searching for something to fill the gap inside me caused by not being able to dance anymore,” she was once quoted as saying.

“I had always loved singing but had thought my voice was no good. It was only when I moved to Australia that I really started to pursue a career in music seriously.”


Watch Lisa Schouw performing I’ Can’t Believe’ on Countdown Revolution.

Early in her career, offered Schouw recording and publishing deal.

In 1987 she formed Separate Tables, initially with guitarist Robin Gist, keyboard player Brett McNaughton and a drum machine.

They signed to RCA/BMG and joined on his massive Jack’s Back tour.

While recording their 1990 debut album Paint A Picture with producer Ross Fraser, they changed their name to the more ethereal Girl Overboard. The album went Top 20 and was certified gold.

Schouw appeared in the Australian film Hungry Heart and contributed to the soundtrack

Girl Overboard’s follow up album GO (1991), produced by Charles Fisher, received critical acclaim for songs as ‘Jackie’ and ‘Chain of Fools’ but failed to chart and the band split up two years later.

Schouw’s career then encompassed many disciplines. They included an acclaimed acoustic jazz trio, and a series of sell-out theatre shows she devised and produced in Sydney.

She returned to her original love in a number of commissioned dance works including The Independent Dance Collection at Performance Space.

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