Noll / Ноль

Noll (“Ноль,” meaning “Zero” in Russian) is a Soviet and Russian rock group founded by accordionist “Uncle” Fedor Chistyakov (“Дядя” Фёдор Чистяков), Alexei Nikolaev (Алексей Николаев) and Anatoly Platonov (Анатолий Платонов) in the fall of 1985. The group first appeared at the Leningrad Rock Club with songs from their first album, Music of Fighting Flies […]

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Gnessin / Гнесин

Originally known as the Gnessin Institute, the Gnessin State Musical College (Государственный музыкальный колледж имени Гнесиных) is an elite music school in Moscow’s Arbat District. In additional to its academic prestige, it’s known as a factory for producing pop stars, including the legendary Philipp Kirkorov, one of Russia’s best-selling and most popular artists, Olga Arefyeva, […]

Irina Dorofeeva / Ірына Дарафеева

Irina Dorofeeva (Ірына Дарафеева in Belarusian, Ирина Дорофеева in Russian) is one of Belarus’s most well-known singers and, as of recently, a political figure Dorofeeva got her musical start at age 12, when she became the soloist of a youth vocal-instrumental ensemble, Rainbow (Радуга), in Mogilev, the Belarusian city where she grew up. Over her early teenage […]

N.R.M.

N.R.M. (it stands for Незалежная Рэспубліка Мроя, or Independent Republic of Mroya—the group writes the initials in the Roman alphabet) is a Belarusian rock group. They sing almost exclusively in Belarusian (as opposed to Russian). The group was founded in 1994 as a continuation of legendary Belarusian rock group Mroya (Мроя; Belarusian for “dream”), in an […]

Таras Коmpanichenkо / Тарас Компаніченко

Таras Коmpanichenkо (Тарас Компаніченко) is an influential Ukrainian singer-songwriter, recording artist, kobzar, banduryst (a player of the Ukrainian bandura), lutenist, lira player, and composer. Коmpanichenkо is an active participant in the Kobzar Guild (Kobzarskyi Tsekh) as well as the musical ensembles Chorea Kozacka (Хорея Козацька) and Sarmatica (Сарматика). He was an active participant in the […]

Taras Petrynenko / Тарас Петриненко

Taras Petrynenko (Тарас Гаринальдович Петриненко) is a Ukrainian musician, singer, composer, and poet. He is known as the author of the song “Ukraine” (“Україна”), which has become a de facto anthem of the country. Some of his other well-known songs are “Song About a Song” (“Пісня про пісню”), “Lord, Have Mercy On Us” (“Господи, помилуй […]

Sofia Rotaru / Софiя Ротару

Sofia Rotaru (Софiя Ротару) is an enormously popular and influential Soviet, Ukrainian, and Romanian/Moldovan singer. Her career has lasted almost 50 years and is still going, and she has not only won most of the major music awards and lifetime achievement awards, but she is also a People’s Artist of both Ukraine and Moldova and a […]

Taisia Povaliy / Таїсія Повалій

Taisiya Povaliy (Таїсія Повалій) is a classic Soviet and Ukrainian pop and shanson singer. Born in 1964 near Kyiv to a musical family, Povaliy attended music school in Kyiv and then worked at a music hall for a few yeas before starting a solo career. She won a number of Soviet music contests at the beginning of […]

Boris Grebenshchikov / Борис Гребенщиков

Boris Grebenshchikov (Борис Борисович Гребенщиков) is a Russian singer-songwriter, and one of the “founding fathers” of Russian rock. He is a founding member of the seminal and long-running Russian rock band Aquarium (active since 1972). As a lyricist, Grebenshchikov has an eclectic style that combines themes of Buddhism, Russian Orthodoxy, alcohol consumption, technology, and so on. […]

Mieczysław Szcześniak

Mieczysław Szcześniak is a highly prolific Polish singer and songwriter. A trained jazz musician, he has explored a large variety of popular music styles throughout his almost 30-year career on the Polish music scene. From singing standard pop ballads to mixing Caribbean rhythms with Slavic folk harmonies, Szcześniak has garnered wide critical acclaim in his native Poland […]

Sherali Jo‘rayev

Sherali Jo‘rayev is a classic Uzbek singer, poet, composer, and actor who was highly influential in the 1980s and 1990s, though he has since joined the long list of Uzbek singers censured by the authorities. Nevertheless, he was and is beloved throughout Uzbekistan and is one of the preeminent figures in Uzbek music. Jo‘rayev was born […]

Bravo / Браво

Bravo (Браво) is a classic Russian rock band formed in the 1980s. Like the popular Soviet band Secret, its style and image was inspired by Western rock, including the Beatles. Evgeniy Khavtan (Евгений Хавтан) founded Bravo in 1983, when he was a student at the Moscow Institute of Railway Engineers. The first configuration of the […]

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