About this project
What's this all about?
What started as a few snotty rock'n'rollers doing their best Sex Pistols imitation behind the iron curtain grew into a movement of raw rebellion. As the quote above points out, it took a certain character to publicize their affiliation with punk rock. From dodging the KGB in the late seventies to secret underground shows in Moscow, Saint Petersburg, and Kazan today, Russian punk has remained dangerous with a raised middle finger to authority and an original brand of do-it-yourself ethos.
We want to bring the story of Russian punk out from the basement and onto the bookshelves. Put the last 30 years of bands, records, scenes, distros, vinyl, and fanzines, into print.
Where We've Gone and Where We Need to Go
We've conducted preliminary research, applied for grants, and planned an excursion to Russia to visit major cities where we will interview bands from the past and present, record label owners, and other members of the scene. So far, we've experienced a great deal of support from the Russian press, American scholars, and Russian punks such as former members of Avtomaticheskie Udovletvoriteli and the immensely popular Leningrad. We've been featured in Colta Magazine and been invited to take up residency with Eastbeat Records (Moscow), Teenage Waste Records (Izhevsk), and other major players in the scene overseas.
We will use the money to independently publish the book. This includes shipping finished copies to bookstores throughout the United States and Russia. After shipping some of the books to your local bookstore, the authors would like to give a talk or do a Q and A in your town (contingent on hosts). Furthermore, your funding will help pay for public transportation, food, and the occasional hostel as we travel by train from Moscow to Nizhny Novgorod, Kazan, Izhevsk, and St. Petersburg.
We want this to be entirely DIY and crowd sourced.
Has this been done before?
A number of researchers, scholars, journalists and fans have written on Russian punk rock. Of particular importance to us is the preexisting work on the Soviet punk scene. Work by people such as Vladimir Kozlov will prove invaluable to constructing our story of Punk Rock in the Soviet Union. Olga Aksytina has also written detailed pieces about the 1990s and the ideology behind "DIY" as it applied to Russia. Both Vladimir and Olga have expressed interest in our project and offered to lend a hand in any way.
Other independent research has also been conducted by fans of punk rock. However, a comprehensive, all-encompassing study has not been put into print.
What we're hoping to get out of it
Punk gave us a lot of knowledge and guidance growing up, so we consider this book a way in which we can combine our passions for history and writing to give back to the music and scene that helped shape us. It will also give us the chance to provide Russia with a history of it's punk rock subculture that can stand in contrast to the west.
Risks and challenges
Research takes a long time to collect and write. Pledgers expecting a copy of the publication right away should be aware of the fact that it may take some time. It is not our intention to rush any work... Steady wins the race.
We are aware that a large portion of the Soviet Union and Russia will be left out of our study. We are also aware that we will not be able to include every band that existed in the scene. The point is not to provide an documentary of each band that existed in Russian Punk Rock, but to provide some semblance of a progressive narrative. We can only dig as deep as we can and present what we found.
Travel within the Russia for a foreign national does not always happen smoothly. There is the potential for obstacles that will limit where we can go. For example, due to time constraints the research conducted will only be done in European Russia, not the east.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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