Artyom Yakushenko and Yuriy Matveyev, come from Irkutsk, Siberia. Growing up in the Soviet Union, they began studying classical music in grade school, and spent many long, dark winters with nothing to do but practice, practice, practice. The Iron Curtain couldn't hold out rock and roll, though, and soon Jimi Hendrix and the Beatles were sharing a gallon of vodka with Mozart and Tchaikovsky.
The result? White Fort, the Trans-Siberian Duo.
The boys have come a long way from the steppes, with a dozen albums and numerous international awards over their 25-year career. They've toured worldwide, from the trance clubs of Ibiza to NYC's Lincoln Center. They took First Place in the Instrumental Music Category in Nashville's 2011 International Songwriting Competition. According to MTV producer Maty Fernandez, "These two guys do what it takes Dave Matthews five guys to do."
"A stunning new fusion between cultures and idioms.... depth, virtuosity and great melodies." Bill Milkowski / Rolling Stone music critic
"With an original sound, great tunes, complete command over their instruments - and seemingly propelled by rocket fuel." Eight-time GRAMMY winner Michael Brecker
"I was awestruck. Everyone was awestruck." GRAMMY winning producer Russ Titelman
"Original and fresh and with an improbable broad appeal, I have not seen or heard anything quite like this. It's amazing how much energy comes from these two guys." Dan Melnick / Absolutely Live