фрагмент из книги "Notes from Underground: Rock Music Counterculture in Russia".

What kinds of things are Petersburg musicians doing to resist the forces of capitalist rationalization? In the West, the commercialization of music is often seen as the first step in the transformation of rock into pop (see, for example, Frith and Home 1987). Rock musicians in St. Petersburg recognize this theoretical idea in their own vernacular ways. Sociologist of music Simon Frith ( 1990, p. 100) has noted that rock musicians in the West sought to distinguish their practices from commercial pop music by drawing on both folk and art values. A similar process seems to be at work in the current Russian environment: a number of Petersburg musicians have sought to preserve their artistic autonomy and integrity by bringing in a national melos, an indigenous Russian tradition, into their music. 4 There is an emergent sense of nationalistic pride among many Petersburg rock musicians who believe that, when it comes to folk music, Russians have a special capability. Traditionally, Petersburg musicians consciously kept their musical syntax imitative of Western rock. Increasingly in the post-Soviet context, however, many realize that if their music is to be taken seriously in the West, it has to exhibit something other than a Russian poetic. Some groups have begun to experiment with traditional Russian musical themes and instruments such as the balalaika and the baian from within the idiom of rock-and-roll. In this effort, producers have often aided them. As Andrei, the underground producer whose thoughts were presented at length in earlier chapters, notes:

[Traditionally] attempts to introduce the elements of native folklore yielded, as a rule, terrifying results. Yet I spent much time, a whole year, with the group Nol' (Zero). In my mind, this is one of the best groups in the country which uses the national melos. . . . Nol' is an amazing band consisting of a drummer, bass guitarist, and an accordion player. The vocalist-accordion player sings in a heart-rending voice and bangs out the rock-n-roll on an accordion so dashingly that you get lost in admiration. Maybe, Stas Namin was right when he tried to persuade the correspondents in an American film Rock around the Kremlin that rock stemmed from Russian chastushki. In the West they experimented with accordions, but it is laughable compared to Nol'.

Interestingly, a new view that the traditional folk song known as the chastushka is seen as the real source of all rock-and-roll music exists among some members of the rock community. Another musician expressed the opinion, quite seriously, that the Russian language would soon be a major, worldwide language of rock music. Such nationalistic pride is understandable within a social context in which Western taste publics have virtually ceased to be interested in Russian culture and have turned their backs on that culture and its producers.


Thomas Cushman

опубликовано в книге "Notes from Underground: Rock Music Counterculture in Russia" стр 170.
State University of New York Press. Albany, NY.
1995
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