Favorite Cossack Ballad About Love and War, 'Not for Me - Ne Dlya Menya' (Video)

The most famous Cossack song, sung at dinners, concerts and campfires

This article from our archives was first published on RI in June 2018

There's something dashing and soulful about Russian folk music, especially when it originates with the Cossacks, Russia's warriors of the steppe.

This is perhaps the most famous Cossack song, sung at dinners, concerts and campfires. It's a song about a love that is always just out of reach, a strange mix of longing and recklessness.

Listen to it. You won't regret it. 


Cossacks are a free semi-democratic military people who emerged in the southern Ukraine during the chaotic age of the 14th-17th century. They played a crucial role in the liberation of Russian and Ukrainian people and the defense of the Orthodox Church.  More on them here and here.

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