Aleksandr Novikov / Александр Новиков

Aleksandr Novikov (Александр Новиков) is a Russian singer-songerwriter, performer, and poet who works mostly in the shanson genre, which he calls “urban romance” (городский романс). He is also the art director of Novik Records (Новик-Рекордс; “novik” also means “novice”). He was born and spent his early years on the Kuril Islands, in Sakhalin oblast, near […]

Aleksandr Rozenbaum / Александр Розенбаум

Aleksandr Rozenbaum (Александр Розенбаум) is a Russian/Soviet bard, singer-songwriter, and poet who is widely known across Russia. His songs—there are more than 800 of them—have been popular for decades, and he has won many Shanson of the Year and other awards. He was born in 1951 in St. Petersburg to parents who worked in medicine. […]

Arsen / Арсен

Arsen Zhumabekov (Арсен Жумабеков, though he goes by his first name alone) is a popular contemporary Kyrgyz pop star who sings in Kyrgyz, Russian, and English. His music is a bit different from that of some of the other most famous Kyrgyz singers of today—less dance-y, more melodic, fitting his more serious-sounding voice. From Talas, […]


Lumen is a Russian rock, alt rock, and punk band formed on February 12, 1998 in Ufa, Russia. Lumen means “light” in Latin. The band consistently uses the English “Lumen” although occasionally some media use the Russified “Люмен.” Current members include Rustem Bulatov (Рустем «Тэм» Булатов), Igor Mamaev (Игорь «Гарик» Мамаев), Yevgeni Trishin (Евгений «Шмель» […]

Alla Pugachova / Алла Пугачёва

Alla Pugachova (Алла Пугачёва) is a classic Russian pop artist, actress and competition judge, and was arguably the most successful Soviet performer from the 1970s until the Soviet collapse. Pugachova was born April 15, 1949 in Moscow, Russia. At the age of 5, her parents enrolled her in music school. By the time she had […]

Irina Krug / Ирина Круг

Irina Krug (Ирина Круг) is a Russian singer, and the widow of Russian shanson singer-songwriter Mikhail Krug (Михаил Круг). Born in Chelyabinsk, Krug was interested in music and theater from a young age, but it took a while for her musical and theatrical career to kick off—she worked as a waitress initially. She met Mikhail […]

Mikhail Krug / Михаил Круг

Mikhail Krug (Михаил Круг; his real last name is Borobyov, Боробьёв) was a Russian singer-songwriter and musician, one of the most famous and highly regarded in the genre of shanson, or “criminal music” (referring usually to the subject matter). He was also a bard. He died in 2002, at the age of 40. Krug grew […]

Aleksandr Dolskiy / Александр Дольский

Aleksandr Dolskiy (Александр Дольский) is a Russian bard, along the lines of Vladimir Vysotsky, Bulat Okudzhava, and others. He is a guitar player and actor in addition to a singer-songwriter. His songs have less of a folk style than do those of some bards—his musical education was extensive, and his songs display a high degree […]

Mashina Vremeni / Машина времени

Mashina Vremeni (Машина времени) was one of the Soviet Union’s pioneering rock bands. Formed in Moscow in 1969, Mashina Vremeni has worked across various genres over the years, and continues to make music today. Their name translates to “Time Machine.” Mashina Vremeni’s eclectic sound, which has ranged from classic rock, to blues, to Beatles-style pop, […]

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