Russian pop music comes from the Soviet Union times. Surprisingly, but even under very a strict censorship and tight control of the state this form of art was highly professional. Yet it is especially important that pop music was dearly loved by people.


First memorable performers of the Soviet pop music were the singers with exceptional vocal talents. Most of them were soloists, who didn’t write their own repertoire, but performed the songs that pleased the authorities. The most famous among them were Claudia Shulzhenko, Leonid Utesov and Lyubov Orlova.

Claudia Shulzhenko

One could become a stage performer only if they were very talented and able to behave within the norms prescribed by the Soviet system. The songs performed by Eduard Khil, Edita Pieha, Lyudmila Senchina, Maya Kristalinskaya and Iosif Kobzon were very popular in the USSR.

Maya Kristalinskaya

Iosif Kobzon

Film Music

The development of Soviet cinema and popularity of Soviet films helped the songs performed in them to become instant hits. Thanks to their onscreen popularity such artists as Marina Ladynina, Yevgeny Samoilov, Nikolai Kryuchkov and many others became popular and sought after.

Marina Ladynina

Pop Groups

First pop groups appeared in the 1960s. They performed only the music that was approved by the Arts council. Among popular groups were “Pesnyary”, “Zemlyane”, “Tsvety” and “Samotsvety.”


Composers and Poets

In pop music of the Soviet period the predominant genre was a song. The music for the songs was written by the members of the Composers Union (Pakhmutova, Tukhmanov, Krylatov, Khrennikov and others), and the lyrics only by trustworthy poets (Dobronravov, Pozdestvenski, Tanich, Entin, Derbenev and Reznik). State censorship applied very strict requirements to the works. At the same time the boundaries for creativity were exceptionally narrow: you could only create either patriotic or lyrical works.

Alla Pugacheva


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