At the beginning of this recording, you hear the Soviet/Russian tradition of applauding in unison, which, depending on whom you ask, is either “charming” or “horrifying.”

Once you’ve listened to the song a little bit, try to think it might be about. What is that caricature of a man trying to tell us? I bet you’re wrong. Here’s the translation of “Street, Street” by 19th century popular composer A. Dyubyuk (originally Dubuque), which we covered today in our class on Russian song.

Once I was returning home
And the street seemed so strange.

Refrain: Left, right, where is the side?
Street, street, my brother, you’re drunk!

And the streetlights shine so unclearly
They just won’t stand at attention.

They dart here and there.
Hey! You’re all drunk, gentlemen!


What’s with the funny face, moon?
You’re squinting your eyes, and you look so odd.
You’ve had one glass too many, brother!
You should be ashamed–and you an old man, too!