Paul Robeson Sings The Hymn of the Soviet Union!

On one of those occasions when the real world and the blogging world overlap ever so slightly — sitting in the pub with Stephen Marks and the other comrades after a local Labour Party branch meeting, when Marc Mulholland wanders by in search of drink and/or friends — Stephen tells me about the SovMusic site, which I hadn’t seen before, and which seems at first and second glance to be a treasure trove of sound snippets of interesting recordings.

Here’s Paul Robeson singing the Hymn of the Soviet Union. Here’s the Internationale as it was fused with the Prussian marching tradition with a new orchestration provided by the Nazi Propaganda Ministry in order to play at the Berlin Olympics, whenever the Russians won a medal (and, no doubt, was very useful after 23 August 1939). And there are thirty eight songs about Stalin…

And for those who want links to some of the better tunes recommended by the commenters at Harry’s on the best political songs ever, here’s the Internationale in Russian (and Albanian! and Czech!, and various other languages, but not Esperanto — though an Esperanto version does exist); here’s Bella Ciao, and here’s Bandiera Rossa (which, as my brother Mike points out, was usefully pressed into service as a wedding march on a fine occasion three years ago).

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