“Das Regime und die Dandys” – book on russkii shanson

This summer I by coincidence saw that a book had been published about russkii shanson or blatnye pesni. Heard prominently on the streets of Russian cities this music has until now been academically neglected and this is to my knowledge the first monograph on the topic. Titled “Das Regime und die Dandys – Russische Gaunerchansons […]

NY Times Saturday Profile features DDT’s Iurii Shevchuk

Today’s New York Times featured a Saturday Profile on DDT’s vocalist (and leader) Iurii Shevchuk titled “A Star Keeps Rocking in the Not-So-Free World“. The article gives a short summary of Shevchuck’s biography and primarily deals with his questioning of the current regime as well as the recent question-and-answer session with Vladimir Putin on May […]

Good Bye, Leningrad

After the special issue of Popular Music and Society on post-soviet popular music was published I was contacted by the movie director and photographer Christine Bachmann who asked if I had heard of the movie “Good Bye, Leningrad” – which I had not. After some technical complications I finally got a review copy of the […]

Aerostat on Russian popular music

Since May 22nd, 2005 Akvarium’s lead singer and front man Boris Grebenshchikov (BG) has hosted the weekly radio show Aerostat on Radio Rossii (these shows are also published and archived as podcasts at aerostat.rpod.ru). While quite broad (and primarily about Western popular music) BG at times also talks about Russian popular music. Besides discussing and […]

TOL: Rocka Rolla Women and Rocka Rolla Men

The online journal Transitions Online recently brought a very interesting article on popular music in socialist Bulgaria and what meaning Western bands had for Bulgaria’s inhabitants: Rocka Rolla Women and Rocka Rolla Men.

The national anthem lyricist Sergei Mikhalkov (1913-2009)

Among the many links between the Soviet Union and Post-Soviet Russia maybe the national anthem is the most symbolic one – here in the 1977 version sung by the Ukrainian group 5’Nizza live on RenTV shortly after midnight on January 1st, 2004: When Stalin in 1943 wished to replace the “The Internationale” which had until […]

Popular Music and Society on Popular Music in the Post-Soviet Space

A happy summer announcement: The journal “Popular Music and Society” (32:3 2009) titled “Popular Music in the Post-Soviet Space: Trends, Movements, and Social Contexts” of which Yngvar Steinholt and I were guest editors is now out. Concluding about two years of editorial work (and a lot of really interesting submissions) the journal includes the following […]

Of spectacles and marmots – Televizor’s Ochki

The group Televizor (Television) based around its vocalist Mikhail Borzykin has been around since 1984 and can be considered the 3rd generation of Leningrad Rock Club bands. The group’s first album “Shestvie Ryb” (Fish parade) was released in 1985, followed by “Otechestvo illiuzii” (Fatherland of illusion) in 1987. The latter album included the song “Tvoi […]