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Mihail Krug

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Biography

Mikhail Krug was a Russian singer, one of the leading singers of the style of songs known as blatnaya pesnya (songs about criminals), or shanson, which has been part of Russian culture since the beginning of the twentieth century.

Mikhail Krug was born in Morozovskiy Gorodok, a suburb of the city of Tver on April 7, 1962. In 1987 Krug participated in a song competition, taking first place. As a result, he took up song-writing seriously. By 1994, he had recorded three albums, which weren’t released officially, but hundreds of pirate copies were distributed. Most of the songs found their way onto his later albums. His first official release was Zhigan-Limon, which featured one of his biggest hits, “Kolshchik” . It took him three years until he settled on the final version. A significant portion of Mikhail Krug’s songs invoke the secret code of Russian prisons and the symbolism of prisoner tattoos. They describe the emotional emptiness and the despair of the prisoners who are separated from their families and loved ones. He also wrote many love songs, and songs about Tver. Krug liked to associate with criminal elements, which inspired his music and his diamond ring was a gift from the notorious criminal Khobot. In writing his songs, Krug used a 1924 dictionary of underworld slang, compiled by the NKVD.

In the late evening of June 30, 2002, Mikhail Krug was fatally wounded in his Tver house by unknown intruders. He died in a hospital a few hours later.

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