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Thus, folk singing traditions of the northern, western, southern and central regions, as well as settlements in basins of big rivers of Oka, Volga and Don, have their own distinct features.
Majority of still alive folk songs have pagan roots bearing the impact of Christian rites.
They are characteristic of active instrumental chordal accompaniment and rhymed professional lyrics, which appeared under the reign of Peter the First.
Before him Russian culture did not known all those things and was not divided into that belonging to countryside and town.
Song Genres Russian folk songs and dances were formed in two cycles: one of them is associated with calendar rites (sowing, harvest, etc.), while the other has to do with family rituals (wedding, birth, burial, etc.). (') ) The epoch of Old Rus is characteristic of heroic ballads sensing the praises of noble princes and instrumental music (pipes, horns, tambourines and kettle-drums).
Special place in song folklore belongs to calendar song cycle; it consists of smaller cycles definitely timed to seasons and pagan festivals (often overlaid with Christian holidays).
HISTORY OF RUSSIAN FOLK MUSIC The roots of Russian folk music Song Genres Music instruments Reviving traditions Lidia Ruslanova New Folk Wave FOLK MUSIC ON STAGE TODAY Zhanna Bichevskaya Folklore Ensemble of Moscow Conservatoire The Dmitry Pokrovsky Ensemble Folklore Ensemble Istoki/Roots Vol'nitsa Kaliki Rusichi Karagod Bely Den' Russka Roma Volga HISTORY OF RUSSIAN FOLK MUSIC (') ) The roots of Russian folk music date as far back as to the middle of the first millennium AC, when Slavic tribes settled in the European part of the present territory of Russia.
The most famous old wind instruments are doudka (or sopel, pishchalka) - end-blown flute known from the late 11th c, according to archaeological digging in Novgorod; zhaleika (rozhok) - an instrument with one or two wooden pipes and a horn bellmouth, dating back to the 18th c.; and kuvikly (or tsevnitsa, Pan pipe) - known from the 18th c., mainly in the Russian south. The point is that town culture was brought in from abroad by Peter the First.
The Old Russian chronicles also mention military trumpets (book miniatures picturing them go back to the 15th- 17th cc), hunters' horns (the same epoch) and tambourines (12th c). Most of the collected songs were folk songs in western adaptation, more apprehensible and close to townsfolk. The composition represents a form typical for western music, but the themes are folk Russian.
Instruments are mainly used by shepherds or as accompaniment for some dances and songs. The end of the 18th century already saw the appearance of first song collections.
Mostly spread were string instruments, such as gusli (folk wing-shaped gusli date back to the 11th c.) and gudok (three-string fiddle used from 12th c, found by archeologists in old Novgorod). It was already clear that the Russian song inherent in countryside differed from the authors songs typical for towns.