Regina Spektor

Regina Spektor
Singer Song-writer  Pianist
A presentation by Emma Panti, Music 1010
Composition History
Listening Guide
Photo by Tim Agne
Born February 18, 1980 in Moscow
Father played the violin
Mother instructed music at Russian university
Age 6, inherits piano from grandfather
Begins Classical piano training
Chopin, biggest influence in Classical Piano
Regina’s father exposed her to Rock ‘n Roll
Came to love Rock, Punk & Jazz genres
Other influences:
– The Beatles
– Bob Dylan
– Billie Holiday
New political movement in Russia
Downfall of Communism
Spektor’s Jewish family faced discrimination
Emigrated from Moscow to New York City
Regina, age 9, left her home & piano behind
Spektor family settles in the Bronx
Prof. Sonia Varga, Manhattan School of Music
Study-Abroad group to Israel
Story-telling through songs on hikes
Encouragement from friends sparks desire
Photo by ddtravel
Conservatory of Music , Purchase College
Graduated early in 2001, with honors
Gains following as street performer
Lands gigs at local cafes & clubs
Anti-Folk Genre
Produces 2 independent CDs
Sire Records signs Spektor
3rd album released in 2002
 Unique Musical Style
 Full Vocal Range
 Sound effects, rhythms, buzzing lips,
clapping hands
Not usually autobiographical
Photos by Rex Features
Composition History
“Fidelity”, 3:46
First airing VH1, early 2006
Begin to Hope album -David Kahne, producer
Unique Styles:
~Drum machines
~Guttural sounds & glottal stops
Listening Guide
“Fidelity”, 3:46
Rhapsody Player: Regina Spektor "Fidelity"
Intro – “Shake it Up”
Verse I – chorus –
Verse II – alternate chorus – bridge
Verse III – chorus
Repeat chorus - Ending
Composition History
“Better”, 3:23
Begin to Hope album, Sire release 2006
Regina does all vocal harmonies
Rock influence apparent, electric guitar
Provocative vocal style
~Whispers, tones, moans
Photo by Sarah Luvie
Listening Guide
“Better”, 3:23
Multi-metered, rubato to a tempo
Breathy Timbre
Chorus – Verse I
Chorus – Bridge – Chorus
Repeat - Ending
Photo by Sarah Luvie
Rhapsody Player: Regina Spektor "Better"
Composition History
“On the Radio”, 3:21
Begin to Hope album
Punk lyrics to Pop music
Speak-singing, hand-clapping
Spektor records all harmony parts
Various pronunciations Russian/Bronx
Regina Spektor, Facebook
Listening Guide
“On the Radio”, 3:21
Intro – Speaking, hand-clapping
Verse I – Russian Accents
Chorus – nonsense words
Verse II – throaty, “gutteral” sound
Chorus – sings all harmonies
Ending, varied syllables, hand-clapping
Regina Spektor, Facebook
Rhapsody Player: Regina Spektor "On the Radio"
Composition History
“Samson”, 3:10
Self-published album, Songs 2002
Re-released 2006, Begin to Hope
Reflection of Classical upbringing
Varied version of Biblical Tale
Demonstrates full vocal range
Listening Guide
Rhapsody Player: Regina Spektor "Samson"
“Samson”, 3:10
Ballad, piano & voice only
Simple Meter
Breathy timber, vocal range
Verse I - Chorus – Verse II – Chorus
Interlude - Chorus - Ending
Composition History
“Laughing With”, 3:14
Produced by Jackknife Lee
Sneak Peek release on MySpace
Warner Bros, 2009
Satirical theme
From Classical to Rock
Anti-folk, indie-pop genre
Photo by Adria Petty
Listening Guide
“Laughing With”, 3:14
Classical piano & Rock influence
Lower voice – “gutteral”
Verse I to Verse II
Chorus – Interlude
Verse III – Chorus –Bridge - End
 Strings and speaking
Photo by Adria Petty
Rhapsody Player: Regina Spektor "Laughing With"
Continues to make a name for
“Extra” work & Cameo spots on TV
What’s next? Expect the unexpected!
Works Cited
Contributors, IMDB. "Regina Spektor." Los Angeles, CA:, 1990-2010. Web.
Contributors, Last.FM, Ltd. "Regina Spektor." last.FM. London, UK: CBS Interactive Music Group, 23 Jul 2010.
Web. <>.
Contributors, Warner Bros. Warner Bros. Records, Inc., Dec 2008. Web. 14 Sep 2010.
"Regina Spektor." Rhapsody. All Music Guide, 2010. Web. 14 Sep 2010. <>.
Khane, David, Prod. Begin to Hope. Perf. Spektor, Regina. Sire Records: 2006, iTunes.
Lee, Jackknife, Prod. Far. Perf. Spektor, Regina. Warner Bros.: 2009, iTunes.