At the Samovar “У самовара” – Balalaika Lesson 5

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A little history of At the Samovar

Polish foxtrot “Pod samowarem” won great popularity in the Soviet Union with the performance of Leonid Utesov. Written in 1929 by Fanny Kwiatkowska, (nee Fanny Gordon), a native of Yalta who lived then in Poland for the Warsaw cabaret “Sea Eye” (“Morskoye oko”) to the lyrics of the cabaret owner Andrzej Vlasta (Andrzej Włast). Russian text is written by Fanny Gordon after the proposal by the Polydor Records Company to record it in 1933.

In the same year the song was heard by Leonid Utesov and in February 1934 he recorded it in Moscow without specifying the author. In that time they were building a Recording Factory in Moscow, and At the Samovar became the first Soviet LP of good quality sound. Another song from the same period – “By the Window” to the tune of “Murka”. These songs have completed hooligan-middle-class theme of early Utyosov (“From the Odessa Jail”, “Hop-and-Smyk,”Bagels”). After that there was a movie “Jolly Fellows” (1934) and completely new type of songs.

In the USSR, the song has continued to exist without an authorship, and since 1975 – with a fictitious authorship “arrangement by L. Diderikhs, words Lebedev-Kumach.” The authorship of Fannie Gordon in the Soviet Union was officially recognized only in 1979 – after her personal appeal. Explaining this situation historian soviet gramophone Gleb Skorokhodov writes that the first pilot LP by Utyosov went with paper labels signed by hand: “At the Samovar. Leonid Utesov (G. Skorokhodov. Mysteries gramophone. M. Eksmo, Algorithm, 2004 p. 319-320).

Here’s recording by Petr Leschenko

У самовара

Слова и музыка Фанни Гордон (Фаины Квятковской)

У самовара я и моя Маша,
А на дворе совсем уже темно.
Как в самоваре, так кипит страсть наша.
Смеется месяц весело в окно.

Маша чай мне наливает,
И взор ее так много обещает.
У самовара я и моя Маша –
Вприкуску чай пить будем до утра!

Запрещенные песни. Песенник. / Сост. А. И. Железный, Л. П. Шемета, А. Т. Шершунов. 2-е изд. М., «Современная музыка», 2004

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