How Sergey Shnurov built a business on the sale of swearwords, passion and holidays

The face, the mastermind, "Steve Jobs", the founder and general director of OOO Leningrad, that's how Sergey Shnurov describes his own functions. He built one of the most commercially successful bands in Russia, but still isn't complacent. 
Origin source
Cords always looking for new opportunities to express themselves and their group. "If we constantly sing" Show Business "- all, [censored]. We need a new arrangement or even sing mad dwarf, but it should be interesting, "- he explained in an interview with RBC magazine.


"There is a group of gangs, and there are groups centered around a single leader, - explains the former general producer of" Nashe Radio "Mikhail Kozyrev. - The fate of them is always the same - the musician gets close, he is not satisfied with the way his team is playing, and it starts itself perepridumyvat ".

Few of the general public remembers that the first frontman "Leningrad" was not the lead, and Igor Vdovin, with whom the band played the first concerts in the "Griboyedov" cult Petersburg club, and recorded their first album, "Bullet". Cords wrote songs and played bass guitar. "If Vdovin sang until now, what I would be extremely happy, and I would have been in the shadows", - says Cords in an interview with RBC.

With such developments in the shade could be the whole group. "Vdovin was composerm, for him "Leningrad" was one of the projects, experiments, there was no purpose to earn some money enormous. With cord it's different ", - says the former director of" Griboyedov "Anton Belyankin. "Leningrad" initially and then - completely commercial project in a good way "- agrees Ilya Bortnyuk speaking executive producer of two albums.

Real producer engaged in the promotion of the group's image, selection of hits, the "Leningrad" is not and was not. "I have not found such a producer, that would suit us, because we have always been non-standard solutions, - said cord. This funky business when you act not on the patterns of business structures, but in spite of. "

Today, in the conditional "Leningrad" work for 15 musicians, sound engineer, sound engineer, two technicians and concert director Veiko Denis. Other positions - producer, financier, personnel officer - takes the lead.


Already in 2002, five years after the appearance of the "Leningrad", the cord replaced part of the original compAva group musicians from St. Petersburg ska band Spitfire, who played on the scene for almost a decade. "The first part of" Leningrad "- such bullies, totally crazy, with the drive, but without sufficient experience and professionalism. At that time already had to sound different, "- said Bortnyuk.

Cords periodically someone fires - "voluntarily none of the" Leningrad "did not go away," he says, but claims not build relationships in the group on the format of 'boss - subordinate. " Not even a signed contract - the amount of fees negotiated verbally: "We are, to my deepest regret, a long time together, and contractual arrangements would be silly - we're all friends with each other and friends." artists' fees - a percentage of the total fee for the concert is paid immediately after the performance.

Although the band "Leningrad" and the name is the leader Karabas-Barabas, nobody complains generally confirms dismissed from the group vocalist Julia Kogan. "We can not say that he is a tyrant, he just knows exactly what he wants. Musicians always have a job, money,Glory to the same group pays a lot Sergei, it does him credit, "- said Kogan.

"Red-haired beast," Cohen, who started as a backing vocalist "Leningrad", in 2010, began to sing the main roles and stayed in that capacity for nearly three years. "Kogan was such cyber Allegrova: woman, which should melt the ice ass - she explains her the cords. - But at one point, I realized that it was not any cyber Allegrova, but a real Allegrova. And at that moment I realized that I had with this man not on the way. "

Location fired in 2013. Kogan took Alice Vaux-Burmistrov. "Alice - that aside such Tanya Bulanova, such women crying in it should be, and at the same time with izdevochkoy - Cords explains - but it is a more subtle way, a plastic".

The appearance of the singers and in general "perepridumyvanie" "Leningrad" began with the revival of the group in 2010. "I understand that the image in a vest-alcoholic has been implemented on all of its 120% and not more [censored] kicking this dead horse" - said cord. Over the year and a half before that, in 2008, he announced the rostart-up "Leningrad": even the band members learned about it from the press.

"At that moment it seemed to me that many musicians have already began to come, as the watch - shook oil and [censored]. How is the oil rig, in what condition pumps, peksya about this one myself. And I have decided that it is better to leave a little bit alone, and it is possible and [censored] ", - says the leader of" Leningrad ".

Alive for profit

Instead Cords launched with the musicians "Leningrad", "Ruble" project. A group of five persons playing hard rock, but large commercial success did not have. But a half year absence from the scene went to the benefit of "Leningrad".

In 2002-2003, Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov does not allow to carry out the capital "Leningrad" Concert of foul language - I had to travel all over Europe with concerts, otherwise the group would cease to exist, said cord. But in the absence of a fee "Leningrad" on the Moscow stage increased from $ 5 thousand. Up to $ 30 thousand., Says the producer of the "CHajf" Dmitry Groisman. In 2008, Cords decided to repeat the trick, but myself.

& laquo; This effect of an artificially created shortage. Leaving the "Leningrad" on hiatus, I hereby raise his price tag - he admits. - At the time of closing the "Leningrad" in 2008, we were offered in Moscow € 35 thousand for the concert, and when in 2010 I was offered € 250 thousand, I agreed "... Then he really were willing to pay that kind of money, it confirms the head of the concert agency "Mill" Sergey Melnikov, who worked with the "Leningrad" at the time.

"Again alive for profit" - this slogan in 2010, held its first concert of the revived "Leningrad" in Moscow. "When I heard this, I thought:" Cord - genius "- says Groisman. - Yes, this sincerity borders on a foul, but it's true. " Slogans Corded always did manage well, says Ilya Bortnyuk: to "Leningrad" and in the early years the group worked Cords marketing director of the St. Petersburg radio "Modern".

Concerts bring "Leningrad" 99% of revenue, Cords says: "All our actions are aimed to ensure that the concerts were more profitable." This is partly why the Group actsie relatively few: 60-80 concerts a year, with the month on compulsory leave - an average of 6-7 concerts a month, of which 2-3 - private or corporate events. For Russia, this average figure, said Groisman.

Thus, in 2014 "Leningrad" could earn at club concerts and corporate parties RUB 250-270 million. (Representatives of the group this figure does not comment).

Most act "Leningrad" Now can not and does not want to. "We want to play in a fun, so I always try to adjust the price so that the pent-up demand. When the crisis hit, I went to meet the market and sent the fee in rubles, but now returns to the currency rates ", - says the director of the concert" Leningrad "Denis Veiko. Interviewees RBC producers and promoters include the "Leningrad" in the top five most expensive rock bands of the country along with Zemfira, "Mumiy Troll" and "The Untouchables." "Leningrad" among them - the only group "is rated R».

In concert, "Leningrad" is always sold out, says Melnikov: "The popularity of the group pinningivaet, but the style does not allow her to act in the "Olympic" is club music. A demand for them shows larger than the number of people that can fit within a particular club. This is a limited offer and raises the price. "

Restaurants and corporate parties

Drinkers and chewing during concerts Shnurova people are not confused: "This is depends on you - if you so much [censored] that you can eat pasta, then you just [censored]. I love all the restaurants serve. "

"One can not say, what more in the invitation" Leningrad "to speak in our restaurants - the business or image-component, most likely, the golden mean", - says Ivan Nesterenko, head of the advertising network department restaurants "Maksimillians" with branches in eight cities of Russia. Tickets for the concert in Tyumen restaurant network cost from 3.5 thousand to 10 thousand rubles, but availability was not -... 850 seats it is about 1 thousand people.. In addition to tickets, "Maksimillians" earned in the sale of food and alcohol. Clubs are themselves organizing concerts, seek command-teach a group of the "Leningrad" and "The Untouchables," says the head of the concert agency CAT Andrey Matveev, "They have an audience with a decent income, it is not only a lot to pay for the tickets, but the rest desperately - spends a lot at the bar."

On the corporate market, "Leningrad" high demand: agency, selects artists for such events, named the band one of the most expensive. Corporate her a lot, but the ratio is still in the direction of public concerts, said Denis Veiko.

"Leningrad" is so popular at corporate parties, because it defines exactly the level of bullying that can afford a person of establishment or the person from the office, - says Mikhail Kozyrev - while always positive and comfortable, "Leningrad" gives people the opportunity to simply have a good time, without thinking about complex issues of the universe. "

Financial holding company "Discovery" group invited several times. "The first concert of" Leningrad "we held three years ago at a forum in Davos: the party came to a lot of foreigners, all of them, not understanding a word in songs,happily jumped and shouted: [censored]! [Censored]! "- Says the deputy director general of" Discovery "Alex Karahan.

"Leningrad" privatized sense of celebration, according to the author of the book about the group, journalist Maxim Semelyak: "In Russia, there is simply no teams that can you guaranteed to cheer up in minutes, and understandably about."

Despite the image of rollicking and always drunken group, concert organizers do not remember the case that the "Leningrad" ripped off performance. "I heard only one story when their concert did not take place, and I know a lot of stories, when a group of heroic efforts, on the elbows and on the eyebrows crept up on stage and acted out what is necessary," - says music critic Artemy Troitsky.

"And for me ..."

But with the "Leningrad" should be ready for everything, Mikhail Kozyrev warns. In 2003, the festival "Invasion" took place in the live broadcast of "Nashe Radio": "We sat sound with lyrics" Leningrad ", which was zapikivat mat. And the song "Stan by a fag" ShNmoat waited for the sound "peep" and then sang the verse: "And I do not for [censored] ...." Then he apologized, but I did not expect such a setup. "

The same Kozyrev in 2001, had a long argument with the other organizer of "Invasion", Dmitry Groisman, whether to invite "Leningrad" is necessary. He was against - the festival had to be children, but Kozyrev insisted: "Leningrad" was that marginal hooligan and paint that was needed "Our radio".

July 1, 2014 came into force a law banning the mat in movies and public appearances. Not a bit embarrassed, a week later on the same "Invasion" Tears for Fears sang all his songs without changing the words. "We just sat down and came up with 14 ways to get around this law," - said the lawyer Vadim Uskov group. It has already been tested - receipt Shnurova for organizers of concerts, in which he indicates that warned about the prohibition to use the mat on stage. So the responsibility falls on the artist, rather than a company-organizer - the penalty is issued to a natural person (2-2,5 thousand rubles..), But not to legal (40-50 thousand rubles..).

In the year of the law of the incident was entirelyit once: the court, despite the receipt of Penza fined the organizer of the concert "Leningrad". Corded fines himself never subscribed. Ministry of Culture, which is to collect and analyze information on the mat in public speeches, work on appeals of citizens - to Shnurova they did not arrive, and the Ministry of Culture is going to attract attention to the problem, said RBC's source close to the ministry. "Even if the worst comes the day and come such a complaint, it's all over with a fine of 2 thousand rubles.." - Ironically cord.

Film and Advertising

"If you do only writing songs, it's boring by definition", - says the cable. "NLS Agency" Back in 2001, he first tried his hand as an actor in detective series. Then Cords filmed almost every year, has been particularly active in 2009-2011. Set of different films, from art-house, not come down to wide screens and festival cinema (the film "The Truce" was in 2010 the Grand Prix "Kinotavr") to the "Day Watch" by Timur Bekmambetov and comedies Michael Galustyan.

"Offers, I think he has a lot, but people like Sergei, like something interesting", - says Ilya Nayshuller, director of the film "Hardcore", the release of which was announced in 2015. The film plays Cords "brutal obscene role" less than a minute length. Nayshuller a special trip to the concert of "Leningrad" to get acquainted with cord, and to invite him to the role: "Five minutes later we were talking about the film, he agreed, and then another hour talking about music. Fees already discussed later. " But in the comedy "Decent people", published in May 2015, the cord has already played a major role. Fee musician for his role in this film, with a budget of $ 2 million, could reach 350-400 thousand. Rub. for the day of shooting, says one of the producers on the market.

Cords starred in over 20 films and has written music for 15. But now, he says, the movie is on the periphery of his interests. When asked what more in his desire to shoot - interest or desire to earn, Cords reacts in surprise: "What money? This is not Hollywood. If I were at the same time spent on the "Leningrad & raquo ;, I think I would have earned more. "

Another thing - advertising. It Shnurova started calling recently: apparently, provocative image does not quite match the marketing idea of ​​the perfect face, the ability to sell their product. The breakthrough came during one of the many corporate groups - at the birthday party of Igor Sparrow, owner of pharmaceutical company "RIA Panda", a manufacturer of tools for potency.

"Tears for Fears sang" Terminator ", and I suggested to Igor Fedorovich do advertising with cord. Took tabletochku and all - Terminator - says Oleg Medzhitov, producer and director of advertising agency Monsters Production. - I'm right there talked with Sergei, he said to him: "Hard times, women and so constantly humiliated men. And then I took a pill and even rehabilitated in bed. Even if you, Sergei, it is not necessary now, it needs a lot of the peasants. " Cords said: "Yes, why not - to show men's solidarity!"

The first roller means to increase potency, "Ali Caps" filmed for 40 minutes - we had free time Shnurova red concert. The other two times to shoot a series of eight movies took three to four hours. According to RBC's source in the advertising market, for shooting the first season in 2012 advertising "Ali Caps" Cords received more than $ 200 thousand. Now because of the devaluation of the ruble his fee down to about $ 150 thousand. According to managing partner of the agency "Stars and brands "Vadim Kormilitsyna annual Shnurova contract worth $ 150-180 thousand in advertising it is" average-celebrities. "- contract with top star such as Ivan Urgant will cost $ 400-500 thousand a year..

The "RIA Panda" say they are satisfied with the results of cooperation with cord. According to calculations of TNS Russia, in 2014, "Ali Capsa" rollers "Leningrad" leader shown on TV, on average 34 times a day. According to DSM Group research company, for three years, sales of "Ali Caps" in monetary terms has more than doubled - to 44.8 million rubles. per month (in March 2012) to 97.7 million rubles. (March 2015), and the product itself is already a few years holds the second place in terms of revenue among dietary supplements in the Russian market.

In 2014 his face Shnurova chosen company "HebOssetia. " "Cords today - as Mayakovsky in 1920: Honest, avant-garde era mouthpiece, the level of trust to which the highest" - justifies its choice of the president of "Euroset" Alexander Malis. Brand Shnurova promoted almost as much as a brand, "Leningrad", but no one would be no different, according to the artist himself: "Solo Projects are interesting to me only as an integral part of the" Leningrad ". Without progress Sergei Shnurova "Leningrad" less strong, and vice versa. "


All contracts for the sale of rights and conducting of concerts, as well as some personal contracts Sergei Shnurova pass through the company "Lace" and certified lawyer Vadim Uskov group. According to SPARK-Interfax-based, 100% stake in OOO "Lace" belong to the former wife Svetlana Shnurova Kostitsyna. But Vadim Uskov says that all key decisions in the company receives the cord. "He simply handed the management of the affairs of the group to close people. Svetlana dealt with this for a long time, it turns out well. " According to two Kostitsyna friends, she moved away from business and wentto live in Spain. Does today Kostitsyn dividends in the company Uskov did not specify.


In 2014, "Leningrad" released two albums that differ from each other only a couple of tracks and covers. Cords trolls so listeners? "Trolls are not the right word: thus I show that the era of albums over, - he says. - Before the album was bound to the carrier, the number of tracks depend on how much to get, but now we swing, and it is not tied to anything. "

Revenues from digital sales is "on the level of uncertainty," says cords, but the group is actively promoting itself in all the major stores of digital music: in this area, "Braid" is working with the French company Believe, the largest distributor of digital content for independent labels and artists.
But since the revival of the "Leningrad" in 2010, the most important channel for the promotion of his music was the internet, free from restrictions of radio and TV. Last year alone, "Leningrad" posted 14 new videos.

Most of the clips for the group made two little-known at the market agantstva - Partizan Belarus and St. Petersburg FancyShot. Both offered their services themselves. "He had some videos - talented, but completely unpretentious. Normally, the clips are engaged producers, but obviously have to Shnurova just do not get around "- says the producer Fancy Shot Dmitry Ants.

The first big clip Fancy Shot for "Leningrad" was filmed in 2012, the video for the song "bag" (about 5.2 million views). "I come up with a synopsis: In the video for" Bags "I said that I needed a video on how to shoot a clip for the rich heifer" - recalls cord. In this sense it is - one of the most pleasant customer confirms Ants: "For all work together, he said" no "to our idea three times." Fancy Shot lifted for a group of about 15 videos, including "Road" (4.6 million views) and "Cry" (3 million).

"The reality is that all of the standard, traditional methods of bringing music to the listener no longer working, - says Mikhail Kozyrev. - Ride the new wave of marketing Sergei could hardly not the first and better than everyone else. "

One andShnurova major talent - the ability to capture the spirit of the time, Kozyrev said: "In the work of" Leningrad "tracked time and era, it plays important symbols of popular culture: in the past there were songs about the" Terminator "," 007 "and" All of this rave " Now - about Sobchak Navalny and "I want to become in Sochi." Many people try to do it, but not all turns out so famously. "

Recently, "Leningrad" often produces songs on topical themes, reviving the format of "in the newspaper in the morning, in the evening in the verse". "Kupletistov - do cool stuff, the forerunner of rap in the long run," - agrees cord.

When in 2010 the "Leningrad" has released the video for "Khimki forest", many took it as a criticism of the opposition. "It was necessary to say that now we are back, and how to announce it? You have to get into that here now on everyone's ears, and now you herachish "Khimki Forest" - frankly admits cord.

Now the "Leningrad" refrain from participation in politics. Advocate would not go in the Donbass, Cords says: "No, it is a politicalArt. " Asked whether such offers he received, does not want to answer. "We do not play for either red or for blue or for yellow or green for - we play for people," - emphasizes the cord.

"Leningrad" attitude to people determines by one criterion - a normal person, or crazy, political views them do not matter "- says a leading NTV Vadim Takmenev, called" Leningrad "act" Anatomy of the Year "in the New Year's show. The performance was free, NTV group paid only travel notes Takmenev.

General Director of "Rain" Natalia Sindeeva Cords also went to meet - made a "friendly offer" to the concert to the fifth anniversary of the channel. NTV "Leningrad" can perform satirical "patriot", the channel "Rain" - a song with the words "burned people at the Swamp." All this, according to Shnurova, "totally integrated into the modern absurdity."

"Leningrad" will continue to look for a place in this absurd, says Cord: "I look at what is happening in the country: if there is no" Leningrad "will be quite boring, Gloom-river. If the end "Leningrad" - I say now, as a spectator, - I would have gone out hope some absolutely. "