Just advertisingThis CD gives the listener a unique opportunity not only to get acquainted with the dark, in the Andalusian style, an early work of Alexander Gradsky much to hear how all sounded the first rock band from Moscow, besides the obvious inspiration from the aesthetics of the high baroque. No concessions to the market, such as: limitter, compressor, or shuffle through the channels - there is only the advance of musical sensitivity listener, the nuances of dynamics and contrasts of sonorities able to assess the composer and the performance level of both the author and his colleagues in the group «Skomorochi»... Read more - Songs on the music and arrangement. So, it all started with the «Skomorokhov» in 1966, where you played with Gradsky, Buynova and Shakhnazarov. What began themselves «Skomorokhs»? and the music!

Miserly Knight

Alexander Gradsky:
«I do not spend money on thoughtless entertainment»

"MK Boulevard" № 13 (251) March 25-31, 2002.

Miserly Knight - Alexander Gradsky

The fact that Alexander Gradsky is a complex man, I knew in advance. Colleagues admonished: "Be ready for anything. Journalists, he does not like, calls logylogs, and indeed anything that ... "

We met with Alexander Borisovich at his house. The conversation was not sticking. Gradsky was wary and suspicious. "Be what will be," I decided, and I began to smile in a friendly way. He immediately calmed down, softened, offered coffee and began to joke ... At parting Gradsky friendlyly extended his hand and said: "Well, you were afraid ... If a person is good, then why not talk. Write about it. I'm not always as scary and toothy as I write. "

Rock and roll turned into a swamp

- Alexander Borisovich, you are often called the grandfather of Russian rock music. In some cases, you react negatively to this, but in others it goes ...

- It all depends on my mood. If my head hurts, the weather is ugly - I'm starting to get nervous, since this question is already boring. And if a beautiful girl came and smiles, then she does not want to tell her mucks, and I become softer. (Laughs.)

- How are you today with the mood?

- The mood is bad, but the girl is good. Here it is necessary somehow to figure out what to answer. (Laughs.)

- Let's try ...

- Have agreed. Rock and roll is a very large professional music world. When she appeared, everyone perceived her as rebellious. But the stage music can not exist for a very long time, if there is only a protest in it or only some kind of novelty. Over time, everything turns into a business that always requires professionalism. The Beatles fell apart just because of this. All four at some point realized that there were things that they could not do professionally. So, at concerts they sounded worse than in the recording. Constantly go on stage and do not match the level that they reached on the record, it was impossible. Therefore, they parted and preferred a solo career, where everyone could recruit wonderful musicians and be on the stage a diamond surrounded by sapphires. Sapphires did all the dirty work - play, music, arrangement - and the diamond could just stand with a guitar. A concert is a confirmation of your class. Since the Beatles scored the highest class, it was impossible for them to look like middle-level performers.

And what happened here is a mistake. It all started right: with amateur hobby for music, with the attempt to create each person their own team. After the movement became massive, the next stage was necessary - it was necessary to sit down and learn to play, compose, sing. And this did not happen, and the rock'n'roll movement died. Here I am called the grandfather of rock music. Why? I think I was one of the first or first to formulate in the record "Reflections of the Fool" (1971), what is rock and roll in Russian. I showed everyone how hard rock, Liverpool style, lyrical song, satirical couplets can sound in our country, how to use electric instruments actively, and reached the first attempts of art-rock. From here those who were engaged in rock and roll, have solved: "Here, to us have specified reference points". That's why they called me grandfather. By the time of creation of Russian rock music, we were the third (after "Falcon" and "Brothers", 1965), and the quality of the Russian repertoire - the first. I remember how Makarevich came to our concerts. We then discussed his candidacy: take him to a rock club or not take it.

- He was very worried?

- Yes. As I remember right now: there is an "impudent" artistic council of rock-n-rollers, "The Machine" "fell", and I swear and say: "The machine" will still fuck you all. " They asked: "Why? They can not play and sing. " To which I replied: "They can not play and sing, but they have their own face and their own things." This for me was and remains the main thing.

- You said that the rock movement died. What do you think has appeared in its place?

- Rock and roll turned into a swamp. "Swamp" in the West is a very high average professional level of all collectives. On this swampy space there are superstars-flowers (lilies). At us so: very low level of "swamp" in different places cans and cans are broken up. Yes, they sparkle in the sun, but they are not fit for use. Journalists write about them, because they have to write about someone, and the public thinks that if they write about the character, then there is something in it. Everyone is in a remarkable unity: some write nonsense, read other nonsense and come to concerts, while others play trash-all this gay company is happy and lives well. And two or three people, like me, look at it from the side and chuckle. It's not bragging, it's a misfortune. Being in this position, I myself do not grow. Growth is a consequence of competition. If it is not, then you gently rot or be lazy. What is happening to me now: I'm lazy and I do not grow myself. On the one hand, I do not like it, but on the other - I'm no longer a boy and I do not have to worry about fate.

- What was rock music for you in the 70s and what is it now?

- In the 70's it was a revelation, there was a hope that everything would be great. Rock'n'roll for me is like a youthful love: even if the girl taught you the horns, it's still a good attitude to her. Sadness is, but sadness is always pleasant. Now the futility of this action is obvious. There is no rock music, there are only individuals who somehow express themselves.

"I can not watch Tarkovsky's movies"

- It is believed that "Romance of the Lovers" is the first film in which rock music began to sound. You were then 23 years old. Why to write, as it were now expressed, the sound track was invited by you, because you were not a member of the Union of Composers?

- This should be asked from Konchalovsky, although it was all by accident. He was advised to pay attention to the young composer. Konchalovsky came to the recording and got to know me. At that time, he did not know what rock and roll was, and he had his own ideas about what music is and what music is in the movies. Having become acquainted closer, Andrei realized that I am a free man and do only what I want. As a wise director he decided that it was better to agree with me than argue and show his ambitions towards me. Konchalovsky took from me what he needed.

- Did you get anything from him?

- I learned how to write music for the cinema, learned the rules and laws that sound the music of the symphony orchestra. And the music was written very funny. I came to Konchalovsky and began to play him my musical tunes, ideas, written by me before working on "Romance of Lovers". Andrei was sitting at the piano and choosing at the market: "Oh! That's what I like and that too. Put them together, let's see how they sound together. " The method of tying - singing from one theme, a refrain from another topic - he dialed 10-12 melodies. We created a musical film, not knowing what kind of music should be in the picture. I never worked like that again.

- Konchalovsky wanted to use you only as a singer ...

- It's true, but I said: "I will not sing other people's things." After some hesitation, Andrei agreed, and I began to work on the verses. The poems did not go to music, and I had to take up the adaptation of Okudzhava's poems, which was monstrous arrogance. And although the credits say Okudzhava, many of my texts. As a result, a sensational picture emerged that people looked ten times.

- After the movie, you quarreled with Konchalovsky. And now do you maintain a relationship?

- We maintain a relationship, but we did not quarrel, but broke up. Some directors have a style of communication that can be called: "I squeeze you like a lemon." That is, while I need you - you are here, if you do not need - go for a walk. And I did not like it. We started this film as like-minded people, like people on equal terms, calling each other at night and talking about high things. Andrew knows how to do this, like Nikita, but all this is just a fleur. They have such a style of work: create a feeling of friendship, interaction and love, so that everyone in the team thought: "We are together." Then, when the work ends, it turns out that it was the directors who made the movie, and all the others - so they helped. For a movie, this is normal and natural, but for a person with my character - no. It's easier for me not to work in a movie than to work in the situation when you are being used.

- So you broke up because you were offended?

- We made the picture together and on an equal footing. And it turned out this: I did a good job, thanks to which the director got his pluses, but he only once said in an interview about me: "In my film there is a lot of music written by student A.Gradsky". After that I decided not to work with Konchalovsky any more. We are now good friends, but work is different.

- Is it true that Konchalovsky was offended at you when you contrasted the "Romance of the Lovers" to Tarkovsky's "Mirror", saying that the "Mirror" is a masterpiece?

- I think this was one of the promises.

- Konchalovsky vindictive?

- Rather remembering. We did a film with him on a friendly, lyrical feeling, we were great together, it was interesting. I did not know that Konchalovsky and Tarkovsky had strained relations and that they competed. I then had my own world - rock'n'roll, Mozart, Bach - everything else did not interest me. One day, quite by accident, I got to the show "Mirrors". I watched the film and in a wild hysteria I called Andrei: "Do you know such a director Tarkovsky? I now saw his picture "Mirror". This is the movie! And we are doing some nonsense with you. We need it urgently ... "The subtext was this: Tarkovsky has an awesome picture, and we let him insert a piston and improve his film, and, perhaps, we will someday create another film a thousand times better than Mirror. But my words sounded for Konchalovsky: "Well, old man, you're doing shit. But Tarkovsky is yes! "I think this is the reason for all his further actions. Envy of the good can give rise to two things: either very much envy, or the desire to compete and win. I have an envy for the good that creates the desire to compete, and at that time Konchalovsky's pride was in the first place. Then, when I looked at his "Odyssey", I told him half an hour how I liked his film. It's incredible that the Soviet man did it, the quality of the work is absolutely Hollywood. This is an amazing movie!

- Do you now also admire Tarkovsky?

- On the contrary, now I can not watch his films, because I changed my mind very sharply about what cinema is. Tarkovsky's films - this is not a movie, it's a moving artwork, it's a picture that is transferred from one place to another. At the same time, there is an information text on top, similar to how the art historian explains in the museum the significance of Velasquez for contemporary art. This is another art, this is the art of Tarkovsky, another genre is an appeal to the intellect. I was delighted because I had never seen such a thing.

- And now the appeal to intelligence is not interesting?

- I am my own intellect. In order to appeal to my intellect, there are other ways: books, fine arts, architecture. Even the art of communicating with people today gives much more food for intellectual development than watching such films.

- Why do you think the song "How young we were" in your performance is the only one that was promoted by TV and radio, and all your other works are still clamped to this day?

- The song "How young we were" was not mine, it was "spun" by the author. My songs are not "clamped", but simply do not spin. It turns out a strange situation. It is not my creativity that is being promoted, but my own character, who then in turn spins the TV. Today, in order to flit on the screen as a musical example, you have to pay. And if I fall into the list of values ​​of cultural life - you can not pay, otherwise I will make a much less impression. Go to the company where they pay, I do not want, it's pointless: I still will not have more fans than now. Of course, my five million is a bit against fifty million admirers of Pugacheva, but they are permanent. On whether they show me on TV or not, they will not love me no more, no less. In addition, my example is not the most pleasant for TV men. If a thing is well done, its performer is a good author, and every day you show nonsense, sooner or later it turns out that what you showed before or after this artist, you can not look and listen. Then those who pay you say: "Old man, why are you showing Gradsky?" Well it. We pay you - show us without it. "

"The whole press is a boulevard"

- I read that your favorite type of rest is lying on the couch in front of the TV. What do you usually see?

- I watch how little people move, talk, - it's interesting. You are spying on others, and you will not get anything for it - it's great. I love "Total" with Shenderovich, films, sports.

- Probably, they are happy that NTV Plus is now instead of TV-6 ...

- Of course. Many of my friends said: "Oh! Wow! Instead of regular reasoning heads, we are shown normal action. " (Laughs.)

- You own the phrase: "The audience has the music that orders." Judging by the airtime, the Russian audience has a rather low cultural level.

- The mass audience is content with the average. But this is a two-way process. If people are hammered every day from the TV screen, which is good - many believe it and order it in the form of records, tickets for a concert, etc.

- That is guilty of TV men.

- Of course, the main culprits are those who direct TV and follow the path of least resistance. They revere the people for cattle and believe that they should give something that is simpler. This applies not only to music, but also to information. Those who are at the television helm, think: "For you," Field of Miracles, "and for us - Stendhal at night." They themselves will never look "Field of Miracles", as they regard themselves highly, and viewers as low.

- You dislike our brother. It's interesting to know why.

- You and your media are a clear example of what is happening. You really do not really know what I'm writing - but take an interview. No one has a desire to listen to my records, no one writes about music. All media today is a product of the human mind, aimed at the person himself. We do not have magazines and newspapers where essays and assessments might appear. The whole press is a boulevard: fast, with bright personalities. And why they became bright, what motivated them - nobody cares. Journalists are interested in brilliance, not what creates brilliance.

"I can sing better than anyone"

- You managed to perform at Carnegie Hall. What did it give you?

- Like dogs mark places, so I marked. "Carnegie Hall" - this is a high step, and speaking there - it's like explaining to yourself that you are not in vain doing your own thing. Carnegie Hall can be filmed by anyone, but those who are not sure that they will assemble the hall, they do not. You can pay money, but no one wants to throw them away.

- How much does a concert cost?

- Expensive.

- More than 100 thousand dollars?

- Less. About 50 thousand worth renting a room, then advertising, ticket sales. Some get something from the tickets, others find sponsors. I did not have sponsors, I did everything myself.

- The costs paid off?

- I was one of the very few who managed to even earn there. I wanted to please myself, and it turned out. If you could see what a magnificent hall and amazing acoustics are there!

- When you left it, what did you think about?

- I felt respect for myself: the crowd at the entrance was accepted with a bang, even the "New York Times" wrote about this a few lines, which is already incredible. In this newspaper, no one writes about free of charge. Nobody knows me in America, although I can sing better than anyone.

- You must be offended?

- It's a shame, but this is a given, and this must be taken into account. A musician is not an athlete, who must definitely set records at the stadium. A musician can achieve success in his garden. I know that in the place where Pavarotti takes a breath three times, I do not need to take it once, and that's enough for me. No one believes this, they think that I should show my achievements to everyone.

- Once you said that you are constantly forced to think up new frontiers for your conquest. Which border do you conquer now?

- With the support of the Moscow government, I received a building in the center of the city to create a Theater of Contemporary Music. The construction of the theater and the recording of the opera are real milestones for me.

- Three years ago you were awarded the honorary title "People's Artist of the Russian Federation". Are you proud?

- It's nice. I never ask anything, but when I give, I do not refuse. Because of this title in the company I'm pinned: "Here we have a national artist at the table. What do you think, Alexander Borisovich? "I answer:" Fuck you! "Regalia should be treated well, but not too seriously. The main thing is not this, the main thing is you and your name.

"I'm not greedy, I'm tight-fisted"

- They say that journalists need to be careful of the sapper when communicating with you. How could you comment on this?

- This is because stupidity is asked. People who feel good do not always come. In such cases, I get irritated and start to respond sharply, but more often than not, I just stop talking.

- Do you consider yourself a rich man?

- I'm secured among famous people. Moreover, I am free and do not depend on anyone.

- What are you currently earning money on?

- Concerts, records, performances at presentations - all that I do not dislike.

- Are you an expensive performer?

- Not cheap. It's easier for me to earn money, because I'm alone and I do not need to carry anyone with me.

- Once you said that you are a tight-fisted person. What, in your opinion, is the difference between the tight-fisted and greedy?

- Stingy does not spend money for nothing, and the greedy do not spend it at all. I consider myself hospitable. If friends and acquaintances come to me, the table always breaks out of my treats. When I come to my friends, the same thing happens there.

- What will you never spend your money on?

- For thoughtless entertainment. In front of me there is always a dilemma: it costs so much, but is it worth it to spend so much on it? If I say that it's worth it, I spend it. But this does not apply to gifts and birthdays.

- If you believe in reincarnation - how would you like to become a flower, animal or tree?

- A flower is an age-old man, there are a lot of benefits from it; An animal - a mountain goat, this is an animal that is free and inaccessible to the enemy; A tree is an oak tree, it is big and beautiful.

- Do you have real friends?

- A friend is someone who will unconditionally come to your aid. I have 2-3 such people. I can call them at any time of the day, and they will come. But these are not the people with whom I communicate constantly. Friendship under the name "do not pour water" is not for me - I'm on my own.

- In your clothes, you prefer black. Are you afraid of being jinxed?

- I did not know about this - apparently it's subconscious. I am comfortable in black, the more he slashes me. But in what can be jinxed, I believe. I have an acquaintance whose behavior change with respect to me other than the evil eye, can not be explained. We have known each other for a long time, endured and forgave each other a lot, and suddenly for any reason he changed my attitude to me. How can I explain this? Probably, someone has jinxed.

- You are married a third time. Finally found true love?

- You never know, you fell in love for the first or last time. Throw yourself into this feeling and every time you think that this is the last. After a while it turns out that you just badly chose. Often we give the subject of a meeting qualities that he does not have, hence frustration. My first wife was Natasha. We were young and did not take it seriously. Our marriage lasted one and a half weeks. Natasha and I had an affair, then it began to fade, and it seemed to us that if we get married, everything will return. When we realized that we did not succeed, we split up. Regret in this regard was, but no tragedy. The marriage with Anastasia Vertinskaya lasted three years. During this time, apparently, some kind of fuse has blown out, and we parted with strangers. Today, if we meet at an event, we pass by each other. I once said hello to her and tried to speak, but Nastya made it clear that she was not meant for that. We do not communicate, and I'm not interested in talking about it. Well, Olga is engaged in paintings, and we have two children with her.

- Are you a strict father?

- I "work" constantly on children, but they know that I will stop and stop. I bring them up, and they chuckle at me. Sometimes they obey, sometimes they do not. I like that they are very freedom-loving, but I do not like that I can not forbid them anything. Daniil is 21, Masha is 16. His son graduates from the London School of Economics, and his daughter studies in London in a design school. Masha is in the hostel, and Daniel is renting a small apartment. From London life they have mixed feelings: on the one hand, they get a good education there and good English, and on the other - they do not like it there, they feel like strangers in England and constantly dream of a vacation in Moscow ...



One of the patriarchs of Russian rock music. He began performing in 1963 in the ensemble of Polish students "Cockroaches" in Moscow State University. In 1965 he played with the band "Slavs". In 1966 the Organizes a new group - "Skomorokhi". In the first composition also participated Alexander Buynov (grand piano) and Vladimir Polonsky (drums). "The friend of the coal miner", "In the fields under the snow and rain," "Spain" and other songs of the "Skomorokhov" of that period later appeared on the minions of the firm "Melody", and in 1987 on "Melody" there was an album "Reflections of the Fool" Compiled from the records of 1971-1974. In 1969, Gradsky, without breaking with the group, enters the vocal department of the Gnesins Institute. In 1973 he wrote music for the film "Romance of the Lovers". In fact, this was the first motion picture, in which rock music was heard from the screen. In the mid-70s he was actively using a synthesizer and now often performs alone. He no longer only plays guitar and violin, as in the early years, but also uses keyboards, percussion instruments, celesta and other instruments. In the early 90's Alexander Gradsky appears - more often under an acoustic twelve-string guitar - with ballads, romances. Gradsky is the author of three ballets ("Man", "Rasputin", "Jewish Ballad") and opera "Stadium." The musician himself never released tape albums.

© Tatiana Nikishina