Руки Вверх (English translation: Hands Up) is a Russian pop band originally formed in 1996. The original band members are Sergey Zhukov and Aleksey Potekhin, although the duo decided to split apart in 2006. In 2008, Zhukov continued to release his own music under the previous name of the band.
The Beginning and Early Works. Zhukov was born in Dimitrovgrad, Ulyanovsk in May 1976 while Potekhin was born in Novokuibishevsk in April 1972. The two originally met in 1991 in the radio station Europa Plus Samara. Back then, Zhukov and Potekhin were busy hosting their two different shows, with Zhukov more in line with music and Potekhin having his own comedy show. After several meet ups, the duo decided to come together and started a band originally called Uncle Ray and Company and for the next few years, they were looking to create their own style of music and recorded in different studios.
In 1995, the duo bumped into Andrey Malikov, an independent producer in Moscow. From there on, the duo became serious in honing their craft and their musical career has started to blossom with the help of Malikov under the new stage name Руки Вверх (Hands Up).
The band’s first album entitled Дышите равномерно (Breathe Evenly) was released a few months after teaming up with Malikov. The first two singles “Студент” (“Student”) and “Малыш” (“The Little Boy”) became instant hits and reached the top ten in radio hit charts in Russia. The band’s early success continued and they began performing in concerts including their live performance in the MAXIDANCE 2 (1997) in Moscow and in the International Festival of Popular Music.
Holding Hands Up and the Break-up. From the success of their first album, the band released subsequent albums including Руки Вверх, Доктор Шлягер! (Hands Up, Dr. Schlager!) in 1998, Здравствуй, это я (Hello, It’s Me) in 2000 and Мне с тобою хорошо (I Feel Good With You) in 2003.
Among the hit singles spawned by the band include “Крошка моя” (“Baby Mine”), Он тебя целует (“He kisses you”) and “Маленькие девочки” (“Little Girls”). The band also started their own music label Dancing Men which produced singles for pop groups like Turbomoda, Revolvers and Boys. In August 2006, the group disbanded and the two artists pursued their solo careers apart. Zhukov recorded his own albums including В поисках нежности (In Search of Tenderness) while Potekhin released the Potexinstyle 3 album, among others. Later in 2008, Zhukov elected to continue using the original band’s name Hands Up in his future music releases.
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