Vladimir Vysotsky [25 January 1938- 25 July 1980] was a Soviet bard; singer-songwriter, poet and actor whose short career had an immense and enduring influence on Soviet and Russian culture. His popularity as an actor (his rendition of Hamlet was a widely acclaimed) was exceeded by his talent as a songwriter- singer. He was known for his unique voice and lyrics which were filled with social, political, and satirical commentary. He had written over 800 songs which about the war, about Soviet prison life, about Soviet official hypocrisy, as well as about ordinary Soviet life, basically about everyone and everything. From his songs people drew the strength to live, to love, to work. His popularity was not derived from mass-production record labels, but rather through home-made reel-to-reel audio tape recordings. Only one official record was released during his lifetime. Despite continuously bumping heads with the Soviet government, Vysotsky’s talent and popularity made it easier for him to get away things (such as traveling to France without permission, performing worldwide). During Vystosky’s lifetime, Soviet television did not broadcast any of his performances or interviews. But like most creative geniuses, Vysotsky was battling his inner demons with alcohol and later on with drugs. He attempted to get clean but the withdrawal got the better of him. During the night of July 24-25th, Vysotsky suffered a myocardial infarction. No official announcement of his death were announced apart from a brief obituary in a Moscow newspaper. Despite this the news spread fast, and on July 28 a mourning ceremony involving an unorganized mass gathering of unprecedented scale took place. During the time of his death, the Olympics took place in Moscow, the attendance dropped significantly as tens of thousands of people lined the streets to see him one last time. He was laid to rest at the Vagankovo Cemetery. [x, x, x]“He embodied all that is Russian. He was Russia,” said Vasily Ovchinnikov.
Last year, 22-time Emmy award-winning reporter John Stofflet posted this news video he created for KING-TV in 2004, featuring Paul Smith and his artistic talents.
i like how all three miguels pop into the frame at the same time