When we, Andrei Rogatchevski, Yngvar B. Steinholt, Arve Hansen and I, submitted our abstracts for a panel at the 2017 IASPM conference in Kassel we just wanted to present some uses of popular music during conflict. The response to our papers on the role that popular music played during the recent (and ongoing) Russian-Ukrainian conflict […]
Two years ago I was asked by Prof. Ursula Hemetek to give a guest lecture within the Universität für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Wien’s lecture series “Transkulturalität”. The resulting talk charted the development of the world music degree program at the Popakademie Baden-Württemberg and critiqued Wolfgang Welsch’s term “Transkulturalität”. Instead, I argue in favor of […]
An area I have been thinking about for a long time is the relationship between music and religion in Russia. I have touched on this in my research before, but not explicitly focused on it. When Andreas Häger contacted me about writing an article for a planned book on popular music and religion in 2015 […]
A couple of weeks ago I was interview by Clemens Panagl from the Salzburger Nachrichten on why songs from the non Anglo-US-American musical world suddenly become summer hits. The resulting article titled “Dein Sommerhit, das unbekannte Wesen” was published on July 7th and included some of my musings on what makes a (summer)hit. I managed […]
Finally my article “‘Ukro-Ska-Punk’ – Band Identity, Surzhik and Language in Post-Soviet Russia” on Svoboda’s use of surzhik and Ukrainian stereotypes in St. Petersburg has been published – my first foray into linguistics. 😉 After the editor of the first book project this article was supposed to appear in disappeared the article found a welcome new […]
Two weeks ago I was in Minsk for the workshop Popakademie Minsk – School of Pop organized by the Goethe Institut Minsk. Together with Martin Lücke I spent a day talking about popular music education covering both music business as well as the higher education of musicians and songwriters (cf. euroradio.fm/ru/shou-biznes-v-germanii-kak-v-maynhayme-gotovyat-pop-zvezd-i-prodyuserov for an article about […]
Finally I got my author’s copy of “Rocking St. Petersburg – Transcultural Flows and Identity Politics in Post-Soviet Popular Music” published this June. The book is a revised and expanded edition of “‘Okna otkroi!’ – ‘Open the Windows!’” and is distributed through Columbia University Press in the United States (ibidem is still responsible for the […]
Russia has since the fall of the Soviet Union been reconfiguring their nation building. One aspect has been to re-embrace the Romanov dynasty as this billboard commemorating 400 years of the Romanovs shows. Taken during my morning jog with my Canon S95.
Another musician who passed away at an early age is Arkadii Severnii (aka as Arkadii Zvezdin – 1939-1980) – an influential performer within what has become known as the russkii shanson tradition (Uli Hufen wrote a good book on russkii shanson with a long chapter on Severnyi – my mini review of the book is on […]
While visiting Tsoi’s grave I also passed the grave of the recently deceased Mikhail “Gorshok” Gorsheniov (1973–2013) who passed away a month before my visit to the cemetery. He was the vocalist of the St. Petersburg based band “Korol’ i Shut”, one of the big Post-Soviet bands. Taken with my D700 and Nikon 20-35mm 2.8.
One of the disadvantages of doing research on Post-Soviet popular music (as well as with musicians in general) is that a lot of central musicians died (and still die) at a young age – like Viktor Tsoi (1962-1990), the vocalist of the Soviet group Kino. Tsoi, however, remains in the memory of his fans – […]
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 […]