War songs. Ukrainian stars of show business changed the vector of creativity, becoming YouTube record holders
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During this war year, the picture on the Ukrainian pop Olympus has completely changed. Among the leaders are Andrey Khlyvnyuk and Pink Floyd, rappers Skofka and Yarmak, Alexander Ponomarev. Focus studied what kind of music is now listened to in Ukraine and who are the leaders of views.
Kalush Orchestra: supported the defenders of Azovstal
The main triumph of this year was rap group with elements of folk Kalush Orchestra, named after the city of Kalush (Ivano-Frankivsk region), where the leader of the group Oleg Psyuk was born.
The guys with the author's song Stefania, dedicated to Oleg's 60-year-old mother, won on May 14 at Eurovision in Italy. Ukrainians received a record 631 points. For comparison, last year's winner, the Italian rock band Måneskin, took 524 points.
Oleg Psyuk, violating the rules of the competition, called on the live broadcast to save the defenders of Azovstal: “I ask you all: please help Ukrainian Mariupol, help Azovstal right now.” The musician tapped his heart with his fist – the audience roared in a single burst of support.
After the competition, the Kalush Orchestra released a video clip for the song Stefania, which was filmed in the ruins of Bucha and Irpen, it scored a record 46 million views on YouTube. Although the lyrics of the song do not contain anything military, but the video sequence, where women in military uniform save children from the bombings, is impossible to watch without tears.
Rapper Skofka — ” There is a whistle in the sky, a little hymn “
Rapper Skofka's anthem is the most popular song on the FM band right now. It sounds on almost every radio station, and on YouTube it has gained 26 million views. The refrain in this composition sounds bewitching:
In the clear sky, a little grim
In the sky, a whistle, a little hymn
In the clear sky, muddy smoke
Burn the forest, a little hymn.
Here, as in the case of the Kalush Orchestra, this is not pure rap, but combined with vocals, and very good. Moreover, Skofka did what seemed to be impossible – by the end of the year, he overtook Alexander Ponomarev's iconic song “Ukraine will win!”, which gained 25 million views, in popularity.
Alexander Ponomarev: “Ukraine will win!”
Ponomarev wrote this song two months after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, bringing together many national stars to perform. They did without rap here, everything was extremely traditional – it turned out to be a fervent military-patriotic march, where in the chorus, the choir consisting of Mikhail Khoma (Dzidzio), Taras Topoli (Antibody), Yevgeny Koshevoy, Yuri Tkach, Petya Cherny and Ponomarev himself powerfully gave out : “Burn, the fortune-telling technique is falling. Motherland Ukraine will overcome!”
Ukrainian show business and war: priorities have changed and accents have shifted
Please note that the top 3 pop Olympus of Ukraine in This year, men took over, and two of them are rappers. This has never happened in the history of our country. Recall that Focuslast year was the rating of our pop kings and pop queens for the 30th anniversary of Ukraine's independence. The first place was then taken by the girl group Open Kids, the second – by the KAZKA group with soloist Alexandra Zaritskaya, and the third – by the pop duet “Time and Glass” consisting of Nadia Dorofeeva and Positive. Rappers took only the fourth line of the rating – this is the group “Mushrooms”.
Wartime completely changed priorities and shifted focus. The same Ponomarev has not been in trend for a long time, there were no noticeable bursts in his work, and if anything sounded on the radio performed by him, it was the anthem of Ukraine. The artist avoided fashion trends, composing in the traditional pop style. However, the quite traditional song “Ukraine will win!” patriotic content instantly became a hit during the war. In pursuit of her, Ponomarev composed in the same vein the composition “On the Earth, in the Field and on the Sea” – also not bad, but the results are more modest – 4.8 million views. Paradoxically, such a negative phenomenon as war, in the case of Ponomarev, contributed to the singer's creative upsurge.
The same can be said about rapper Yarmak. With the outbreak of war, Oleksandr Yarmak joined the Armed Forces of Ukraine. But the artist manages to write new hits. It can be said that the war gave a powerful impetus to the artist's work. Firstly, he switched from Russian to Ukrainian, and secondly, he wrote a number of patriotic hits, among which the main one is “Dike Field” (performs with singer Alisa), which is dedicated to the Azov fighters. This is an epic rap with ethno-inserts.
At all foreigners there is a check of the lips,
Neptune of his trident is removed from the Black Sea.
Forever and ever, the legend has been shown,
show your military regiment “Azov”.
“Wild Field” was watched by 11 million people on YouTube .
Of course, in this review one cannot fail to recall the first iconic wartime song – “Chervona Kalina” by Andrey Khlyvnyuk, leader of the Boombox group. From the very beginning of the war, the singer joined the ranks of the defense. Now trained as a combat drone pilot.
The artist acapella, in military uniform, with a machine gun, performed the song of the Sich Riflemen “Chervona Kalina” against the backdrop of St. Sophia of Kyiv and posted it on the social network, where it gained 1 million views. A couple of days later, South African musician David Scott, the leader of The Kiffness, made an arrangement for “Chervona Kalina” and created a simple video: Khlyvnyuk sings there on Sofiyskaya Square, and Scott accompanies him on the synthesizer at home. The song turned out to be modern and dynamic, and today it has been rated by 13 million people. But this is not the end of the story.
Then the legendary rock band Pink Floyd invited Khlyvnyuk to record a joint composition based on “Kalini”, which became Hey Hey Rise Up. It topped the charts in 25 countries, and 11 million people watched it on YouTube. Let's mention that the other day, at the heat of the familyboombox group, Andriy said that Hey Hey Rise Up earned 500 thousand pounds for Ukrainian charitable foundations. Before “Kalini”, Khlyvnyuk had only one song in his repertoire of patriotic content – “Zliva”, which very modestly gained views on the net.
Singer Jerry Heil (Yana Shemaeva) and rapper alyona alyona (Alena Savranenko) performed exclusively urban pieces (“Security, Cancellation”, “Pyshka-Pushka”), but, having been forced to emigrate in Germany, the artists together performed and recorded new poignant compositions – as a reaction to the terrible time of the war: “Prayer”, “Ridnі my”, “Why?”. All of them became hits. And they released the Ukrainian ethno track #KUPALA with the German singer ELA, which gained 8.1 million views on YouTube.
The Wellboy singer, who in 2021 literally flooded the airwaves with the hits “Gusi” and “Cherry”, composed a tough patriotic piece “Vorogiv on Knives”, which became a hit in just two weeks. He said about her: “I was taught that war is always bad. I am a kind person. But this war aroused in me some kind of anger, indignation and a thirst for revenge on the Russians. What they are doing is scary. And sooner or they will answer too late.” To date, the lyric video of the track has gained 2.9 million views (there is no video yet).
Anton Velboy sings:
Let's forget before, now everything else,
We have one heartbeat for all,
All the best verses were gathered at the song,
Such a life, siren – hide.
Vorogiv — on the knife,
< em>Mom, don't feed why your son is so far away
We live like this, as if we had commanded the commandments of Father Taras.
We fight – we fight, and everything will be in us garazdMusically, Wellboy's hit is bright contemporary pop funk. And, despite the mention of “thieves” and “kativ”, this thing is about something else – about the hope for peace, about Victory. It has more light than darkness, more peace than war.
Of course, such a terrible phenomenon as war has changed all of us, but it should be noted that it gave rise to bright and interesting compositions, moreover, among performers, from which the appearance of such powerful, patriotic things was not expected. Time dictates its repertoire.