Some Russian Music Recommendations

Music is a great way to learn a language, as the speaking is usually clear and easy to keep up with. Here are just a few options to start with!

Vladimir Vysotsky is one of the most famous Russian musicians from the 1960s and 70s. His songs are about life in the Soviet-Union, and have a distinct gritty style to them. His music can be found on YouTube, and you can start with “Спасите Наши Души” (“Save Our Souls.”)

Alla Pugacheva is a beloved pop icon. Among many songs that can be found on YouTube, she is also featured in the famous movie Ирония судбы (The Irony of Fate). She has a more recent music video that you can find here, which stars her and Russian comedian and singer Maksim Galkin.

One of my personal favorites is a contemporary band called “Серебряная свадьба,” “Silver Wedding.” Their style is a little more folksy, and the photo above is from their song about Alexander Pushkin’s death, which you can find here.

“Грибы,” “Mushrooms,” is one of the most popular new groups. They’re actually Ukrainian, but they rap in Russian. Their songs are somewhat parody, somewhat serious, but very entertaining. The language is a little bit harder to understand, but the songs are still catchy even if you don’t get everything! You can start with their most popular song “Тает лед” (“Ice melts”).


Algarabía is a Mexico City-based magazine with a distinct quirky and ironic style. They publish pieces on science, language, history, art, and, according to their website, “little explored aspects of cotidianity.” Examples of their articles (which can be found on their website) include “Position Changes in Erotic Art”, “People don’t know how to drink coffee”, and “The Science on Cursing”.  Better suited for advanced Spanish learners, articles in this magazine are characterized by  playful yet accessible prose. Their series on etymologies is particularly good; sometimes poignant, often hilarious, always informative.