Watch These Russian Folk Music Videos for a Cultural Experience

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,

Looking for a unique cultural experience? Check out these Russian folk music videos! From traditional ballads to upbeat dances, you’ll get a taste of the country’s rich musical heritage.

Introduction to Russian Folk Music

Russia has a rich and varied history of folk music. Russian folk music has been passed down through the generations, often being adapted and reinterpreted to fit the times. Russian folk music has been a source of inspiration for many classical composers, including Tchaikovsky, Borodin, and Mussorgsky. In recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in Russian folk music, both in Russia and abroad. These Russian folk music videos are a great way to get a taste of this rich and vibrant musical tradition.

What is Russian Folk Music?

Russian folk music is a genre of music that relies heavily on the use of traditional Russian instruments, such as the balalaika, accordion, and garmoshka. This genre of music often has a rural feel to it, and commonly tells stories of Russian life and history. Folk music in Russia dates back hundreds of years, and was used as a way for people to communicate their stories and experiences.

Russian folk music is unique in its sound, and has been influence by a variety of other genres over the years. For example, many people believe that Russian jazz was heavily influenced by folk music. Today, you can find elements of Russian folk music in a variety of popular songs. If you’re interested in learning more about this genre of music, we recommend watching some of the videos below.

The Origins of Russian Folk Music

The origins of Russian folk music can be traced back to the 10th century, when Slavic people from across Europe began to settle in the region. By the 13th century, folk music had become an integral part of Russian culture, with songs and dances being performed at religious and secular celebrations alike.

Over the centuries, Russian folk music has been shaped by a number of different influences, including Germanic and Mongolian traditions. In more recent times, Western pop and rock music has also had an impact on the genre. Today, Russian folk music is enjoyed by people of all ages and background, both in Russia and beyond.

If you’re interested in learning more about Russian folk music, why not check out some of the videos below? These clips offer a great introduction to the genre, showcasing a variety of different styles and traditions.

The Instruments of Russian Folk Music

You might think that you know everything there is to know about Russian folk music after watching Borat, but you would be wrong. Traditional Russian folk music is actually quite beautiful and uses a variety of different instruments. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the more popular instruments used in Russian folk music.

The Balalaika

The balalaika is a Russian folk instrument with a long neck and triangular body. It is usually strummed or plucked with the fingers, and has three strings tuned in fourths. There are many different types of balalaika, but the most common is the prima, which has a body made from spruce wood and a neck made from birch. The prima is usually between 90 and 100 centimeters long.

The balalaika has been around for centuries, and its origins are thought to date back to the 16th century. It was first mentioned in print in a Russian book from 1571, and it is believed to have come to Russia from Central Asia or the Middle East. The earliest known depiction of a balalaika is from a 1688 painting by German artist Johann Christoph Weigel.

The balalaika became popular in Russia in the 18th century, when it was used by peasant bands known as skomorokhs. These bands would often accompany traveling performers known as zhenikhis, who would sing epic poems called bylinas. The skomorokhs would also play at weddings and other celebrations.

In the 19th century, the balalaika began to be played in orchestras, and it quickly became one of the most popular instruments in Russia. Among the most famous balalaika players of this period was Vasily Vasilievich Andreyev, who helped to develop a new type of balalaika with metal frets on the neck. This made it possible to play melodies on the instrument with greater precision.

Today, the balalaika is often used in folk music ensembles, and it remains one of the most recognizable symbols of Russian culture.

The Domra

The domra (домра) is a long-necked Russian folk instrument of the lute family with three to five metal strings. It first appeared in the 14th century and by the 16th century had become widely used in Russia. The domra became an important instrument in Russian folk bands and orchestras, particularly in the 19th century when it was frequently used as a solo instrument. It has a round body and a long neck, similar to the balalaika, with metal strings that are plucked with the fingers. The number of strings varies from three to five, with four being the most common.

The Bayan

The bayan (Russian: баян, IPA: [bɐˈjan]) is a chromatic button accordion developed in Russia in the early 20th century. It has been established as the hallmark of Russian and Soviet music, often appearing in patriotic tunes, movie scores, and popular music. It has three rows of keys for the player’s left hand and three rows of buttons for the right.

The Styles of Russian Folk Music

There are many different types of Russian folk music, from the soft and calming strains of the balalaika to the high-energy and fast-paced music of the gypsy. You can find videos of all of these different types of music on the internet, and watching them is a great way to get a feel for the culture of Russia.


Klezmer is a style of music traditionally associated with Ashkenazi Jews of Eastern Europe. The word “klezmer” is derived from the Hebrew phrase “kli zemer,” meaning “instrument of song.” The klezmer style emerged in the 16th century and is characterized by its use of improvised folk melodies, often based on popular dance tunes. It is typically played on clarinet, fiddle, accordion, and bass.

If you’re interested in hearing some klezmer music for yourself, check out the videos below. These videos feature performances by some of the most popular klezmer bands in Russia.


Balakirev is one of the most popular styles of Russian folk music. This type of music is characterized by its fast tempo and lively rhythms. Balakirev is often performed on the balalaika, a traditional Russian string instrument. This style of music originated in the village of Balakovo in the Saratov region of Russia.


Garmon is a type of Russian folk music played on a button accordion. Garmon originated in the early 19th century in the Russian province of Tula. The name “garmon” comes from the German word “harmonika”, meaning “accordion”.

Garmon music is usually lively and upbeat, making it a popular choice for dancing. The garmon is also used for singing folk songs, as well as for accompanies other instruments such as the balalaika and bayan (a type of chromatic button accordion).

There are two main types of garmons: diatonic and chromatic. Diatonic garmons have only one row of buttons, which limits the number of notes that can be played. Chromatic garmons have two rows of buttons, which gives the player a wider range of notes to choose from.

If you’re interested in hearing this unique type of Russian folk music, check out some of these videos:

[Video 1](
[Video 2]( _ 7IwVJ4U)
[Video 3]( HMfHIjk)

The Performers of Russian Folk Music

Russian folk music has been passed down through the generations, often being performed by families or groups of friends. These videos show some of the best performers of Russian folk music, keeping the tradition alive.

Mark Bernes

Mark Bernes was a Russian singer and actor who was born in 1911 and died in 1969. He was best known for his roles in two Soviet films, Sholokhov’s And Quiet Flows the Don and Ilya Muromets. Bernes began his career as a folk singer before being drafted into the Red Army to fight in World War II. After the war, he resumed his career in music and acting. In addition to his work in film, Bernes also had a successful recording career, releasing several popular albums of Russian folk songs.

Nikolai Ozerov

Nikolai Ozerov was born on July 17, 1900 in the village of Nikolskoye, Russia. He was an accomplished violinist and bandleader, and is considered one of the pioneers of Russian folk music. He began his musical career performing with traveling circuses and ballets, and later formed his own orchestra, which became one of the most popular in Russia. Ozerov’s orchestra toured extensively throughout Europe and the United States, and he composed several works for film and television. He died on December 26, 1977 in Moscow.

Lydia Ruslanova

Lydia Ruslanova was a popular Russian folk singer and one of the first to be recorded. She was born in 1886 in the village of Svetlovodsk in the Kursk region of Russia. Her father was a choirmaster and her mother was a schoolteacher. Ruslanova began to sing in her father’s choir when she was nine years old.

In 1904, she married Nikolai Ruslanov, a violinist, and they moved to Moscow. Nikolai died in 1910, and Lydia began working as a street singer to support herself and her two young daughters. In 1912, she met Pavel Chesnokov, a composer who would become her lifelong friend and collaborator.

Chesnokov arranged for Ruslanova to make her first recordings in 1916. She became one of the first Russian folk singers to be recorded, and her records were very popular. In 1918, she toured the United States with Chesnokov’s choir, and she continued to tour and make records until her death in 1961.

The Legacy of Russian Folk Music

Russia has a long and storied history with folk music. For centuries, folk music has been an integral part of Russian culture. These folk music videos will give you a taste of the unique music and culture of Russia.

The Influence of Russian Folk Music on Classical Music

Though Russian folk music has been largely overshadowed by classical music in the Western world, its influence can be heard in the works of many great composers. Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, and Prokofiev all drew inspiration from Russian folk songs and dances, infusing their work with the distinctly Russian flavor of this music.

Russian folk music is characterized by its use of traditional instruments like the balalaika and accordion, as well as its often melancholy lyrics. This type of music was particularly popular in the 19th century, when it was used by composers to evoke a sense of nostalgia for a simpler time.

Today, Russian folk music is enjoying something of a resurgence in popularity, thanks in part to videos like the one below. These videos offer a rare glimpse into a musical tradition that is largely unknown in the West, and they provide a fascinating look at the way this music has influenced some of history’s greatest composers.

The Influence of Russian Folk Music on Pop Music

Though Russian folk music has been overshadowed by Western pop music in recent years, its influence can be heard in many popular songs today. Russian folk music has a long history, dating back to the ninth century. It is characterized by its use of Orthodox Christian themes, as well as its distinctive instrumentation and harmonies.

During the Soviet era, Russian folk music was suppressed and largely replaced by socialist propaganda songs. However, after the fall of the Soviet Union, there was a resurgence of interest in traditional Russian folk music. Many modern pop songs have been inspired by or contain elements of Russian folk music.

Here are some examples of popular songs that have been influenced by Russian folk music:

1. “7 Years” by Lukas Graham
2. “All About That Bass” by Meghan Trainor
3. “Work” by Rihanna ft. Drake
4. “Can’t Feel My Face” by The Weeknd

Similar Posts