33a / 33ა

33ა (33a) is a Georgian folk-rock band based out of Tbilisi. It was founded in 1994, during the troubled “dark 90s” of post-Soviet Georgia, led by Niaz Diasamidze. The name of the band, in fact, comes from the address of Diasamidze’s Tbilisi Apartment – 33a Paliashvili Street. All of the band members are Georgian. Diasamidze […]

Igor Rasteryaev / Игорь Растеряев

Igor Rasteryaev (Игорь Растеряев) is a Russian singer, poet, musician, and actor. He is something of a newer generation of bard—he didn’t come of age until after the collapse of the Soviet Union, so he didn’t partake in the underground activities that are usual for bards, but his musical style itself fits in well to […]

Veronika Dolina / Вероника Долина

Veronika Dolina (Вероника Долина) is a Russian singer, poet, and bard—one of the few women in that male-dominated genre. She was born and raised in Moscow, in a family of an aircraft-designer father and a doctor mother. She studied at music school when she was young and then entered the French department at university, training […]

Aleksandr Galich / Александр Галич

Aleksandr Galich (Александр Галич; originally Ginzburg) was a Russian/Ukrainian singer-songwriter, bard, poet, and Soviet dissident who died in 1977. He is well-known enough, and beloved enough, to be mentioned in the same breath as Vysotsky. He was born in present-day Ukraine (Dnepropetrovsk) to a family who enjoyed, though did not create or participate in, music […]

Paperny T.A..M… / Паперный Т.А..М…

Paperny T.A..M… (Паперный Т.А..М…) is a Russian music group that was founded in Moscow shortly before the collapse of the Soviet Union. Its leader is Aleksey Mikhailovich Paperniy (Алексей Михайлович Паперный; the T.A..M… stands for “fellowship of actors and musicians” (товарищество актёров и музыкантов), though information about the strange system of periods/ellipses is not forthcoming. […]

Vladimir Vysotsky / Владимир Высоцкий

Vladimir Vysotsky (Владимир Высоцкий) was one of the most celebrated figures of the late Soviet underground cultural scene. He is best known as a Russian singer, performer, and poet and one of the founders of the Soviet bard tradition, but he was also an inspiration for many members of Soviet society who disagreed with the […]

Aleksandr Bashlachev / Александр Башлачёв

Aleksandr Bashlachev (Александр Башлачёв), nicknamed SashBash (СашБаш, for Sasha, the common nickname for Aleksandr) was a Soviet/Russian singer-songwriter, poet, and bard, a popular performer in the Soviet underground circuit. Born in Cherepovets, Vologda oblast, Bashlachev went to school and university there and initially worked in metallurgy. He later moved to Sverdlovsk to study journalism but […]

Venya D’rkin / Веня Д’ркин

Venya D’rkin (Веня Д’ркин; originally Aleksandr Litvinov, Александр Литвинов) was a Ukrainian (Russian-speaking) poet, songwriter, musician, artist, and storyteller, and one of the later generation of bards. He had a much more informal, unpolished image than some other recent musicians, showing his truly countercultural ethos. D’rkin grew up in a small mining town near Luhansk. […]

Zemfira / Земфира

Zemfira (Земфира) is the stage name of Zemfira Talgatovna Ramazanova (Земфира Талгатовна Рамазанова), a Russian rock musician originally from Ufa, Bashkortostan. Zemfira has sold more than three million records over the course of her career, and continues to be popular in Russia and the former Soviet Republics. Zemfira was influenced from an early age by rock […]

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