Music is part of the cultural identity of almost every society I have experienced or studied. One of my avid hobbies for decades was cultural anthropology so visiting other countries was not just sight seeing or vacation on the beach but getting to know about the culture, the customers, common cultural knowledge that everyone accepts, music, art and family structure.
When I first started visiting Russia in 1976, it was part of the Soviet Union and its largest member and music had a long tradition. The dominate forms were European style classical, folk music, popular standards and bard music. About that time, in one region, and city St Petersburg the young were captivated by music they heard on their short wave radios or from smuggled-in British rock records. Most musicians were formally trained in music theory and classics as a basis for their branching out into other genres including jazz and standard pop music. But the kids in St Petersburg were rejecting much of that(although not that much, they were still integrated into the system of education and societal norms) and started experimenting with their own version of rock. Some of it was junk but a lot had strong craftsmanship in songwriting and arrangements despite no commercial outlet for their work. A "concert" might have been a few close friends invited over to listen in the livingroom. They found a way to record(tape recorders were registered items and no kid would have access to one) by fitting a phonograph with a needle driven by a small speaker mechanically that scratched the rotating surface of a trimmed down X-ray film. These became trading material between others who were interested in new forms of music but were not invited to the private concerts. Concerts were also help out in the woods or in countryside recreational areas. There is an interesting but too long to report here, story of my direct involvement in the early development in this rock music and how the government handled it. Maybe another time.
By the early 80s there was open popularity for this locally grown version of rock that was mostly either crude basic rock or rock with a great variety of instruments and a mix of elements of jazz, Latin style rhythms and popular style harmony. The playing level was pretty consistently high level due to the formal music training that was so common. As the country opened up a lot more with trade and exchange with the west, the new St Petersburg music also found avid fans all over the country and became a commercial activity. A few of the original founders of that scene in St Petersburg made the transition from underground artists to national stars. Suddenly there was a flood of local and international music available and the fans absorbed it all. I am still amazed how much music knowledge there is here. Any young person I know can recite the words so some of the most arcane groups or songs from the US, UK or Europe or know the band members of groups that disbanded a decade or two before they were born. It is curious however what is missing, some groups that were very big in the US are completely unknown. Groups like Journey that owned radio during the 70s and early 80s are unknown. The Grateful Dead, a band which ought to be very popular here, is unknown, but all details of the music and lives of those bands lesser known contemporaries ARE known.
There is a blurring of the genres, for example a classical composer, Italian opera, the Beatles and Chet Atkins, Piazzolla Tango music and and Elmore James early electric blues might be mixed into the same listener's iPod song list. In this regard, of breadth and width of music tastes, the music scene here is lot more intense than in the US where it has gradually gotten very narrowly cast. A popular form of music called Moscow Pop, that sells concert tickets, fills radio play lists and on TV is a form of entertaining, pop music known more for glamour and glitzy staging and celebrity than for musical importance. Sort of glam versions of Bubblegum pop music from the 60-70s in the US. The shows are high on showmanship and star power and weak on musical interest. But very popular everywhere except St Petersburg which thinks it is pretty devoid of content. The stars are certainly attractive, the women are usually actors or models before being tapped into the role of pop diva. One group of 3 hot babes, is called Via Agra was sort of a standout, because they acknowledged in interviews that they were not good but entertaining. Well actually they were good, their producer was very good at turning minor pop songs in very well crafted arrangements and productions, as slick as anything done in the US. They far out glamor'ed the Spice Girls, with more intelligence, beauty and style. They gave great interviews and each became a star in her own right. A red head in the group(which changed cast members occasionally but always a red head, blonde and brunette) was probably the most attractive feminine female stage personality I have encountered, even in person without stage makeup when I met her.
Jazz is big here and currently the area of the most new exploration. Classical music is where the stars are however, more people know the name of the music director of the Mariinsky Theater than know the stars of the beloved local football team. There are more classical music venues than rock venues.
So a long answer to a reasonably short question....