Since the early 1990’s, Fedor Chistyakov has been known as the songwriter, front singer, and accordionist for the band Nol’ (Zero), a cult model of Russian rock music. His unique manner of singing and the fact that he played button accordion, an instrument atypical of rock music at the time, made the band stand out, to the extent of being featured as exemplary in Western documentaries on Russian Rock. Fedor developed and added to the tradition of The Doors, The Pogues, Deep Purple, Chuck Berry, James Johnson and other rock classics. He is at the same time quite a sophisticated and insightful composer, arranger, multi-instrumentalist musician, whose creative interests embrace rethinking classics and producing experimental instrumental music of many genres and styles. If there is literally the embodiment of the Russian Rock’n’Roll, then it is Fedor Chistyakov.
Slava Tolstoy (Boston) – guitarist and producer. Works with musicians of many different genres such as Lynn Harrell, Kenny Aronoff, Eric Marienthal. One of his most known and projects is International String Trio which fuses Gypsy Jazz with World Music and actively tours in US. He is also part of Valinor Quartet and a frequent collaborator of Olli Soilkkeli, Ben Powell, Bonazlo Bergara and others. Recenty he is partly back to exploring his Russian roots, writing and performing songs in Russian solo and with a band.
Russian born Zhenya Rock is a fearless multi instrumentalist, guitar virtuoso, composer in many genres and true master to create sound right on stage using loop station by layering sounds he produces right on front of you.
Zhenya’s career started in the Moscow theater Sovremennik as a composer and guitarist also with members of Russian rock bands like Aria, Bravo and later in America with and Red Evises and the English band members from Ramones, King Crimson, and the Father of Psychedelic rock Arthur Brown.
Zhenya lives and works in Austin Texas as a producer when he is not on solo tours or with his with electric- gypsy-rock band Flying Balalaika Brothers.
Max Ridley is a Boston-based musician, composer and teacher. He was awarded full-tuition scholarships to study at Berklee College of Music for both an undergraduate and graduate degree. He earned his graduate degree from Berklee’s Global Jazz Institute under the direction of pianist and educator Danilo Perez. He has shared the stage with renown musicians such as Kenny Werner, Jeff Coffin, Terri Lyne Carrington, Donny McCaslin, Jerry Bergoniz, Ingrid Jensen and Rakalam Bob Moses. He has performed in venues such as the Blue Note, Boston Symphony Hall, the Kennedy Center and the Umbria Jazz Festival. He has toured domestically and internationally and has also spent some time living in Valencia, Spain and considers it his second home as well as the other artistic community to which he belongs.
Rob Flax is an award-winning multi-instrumentalist, composer, and educator from Evanston, IL with a playful heart and an open mind. He has performed nationally and internationally with groups of many different styles, including opening for B.B. King and Tower of Power, playing viola and violin with the Trans Siberian Orchestra and YouTube star Jacob Collier, upright bass in an Argentine tango ensemble, mandolin and fiddle in various bluegrass bands, electric violin in several rock bands, collaborations with modern dancers, and more. As a composer Rob has written music for choreographers, film (including work on the soundtrack of James Franco’s film As I Lay Dying), and several original projects. Rob is a recent graduate of the New England Conservatory (M.M. 2012 – Contemporary Improvisation, Music In Education), and he currently lives in Boston, MA.