The Ministry of Culture of the Russian Republic recently issued a ban on any song with a tempo that is too high – or too slow! Taylor Swift, Drake and Beyoncé are the most affected. ttmd

Which of your fave Taylor Swift, Drake and Beyoncé songs has Chechnya banned in culture crackdown?

The Eras Tour won’t be coming to Grozny anytime soon.

Letting go of upbeat bangers is a challenge for Ramzam Kadyrov himself: A Telegram post Sunday from the leader features a video with backing music just outside of this range. | Photo-illustration by Yasha Mikolajczak/POLITICO (source images via Getty and AFP)

Chechnya, we have bad blood.

The culture ministry of the Russian republic recently announced it is banning any songs that are too up-tempo — or down-tempo — in a bid to conform with the country’s musical traditions and root out any hint of Westernization.

“From now on all musical, vocal and choreographic works should correspond to a tempo of 80 to 116 beats per minute,” the ministry said in a statement last week, as reported by the Moscow Times.

According to Chechen ruler Ramzan Kadyrov, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, the idea is to make music “conform to the Chechen mentality.” But letting go of upbeat bangers is a challenge for Kadyrov himself: A Telegram post Sunday from the leader features a video with — guess what — backing music just outside of this range.

“Borrowing musical culture from other peoples is inadmissible,” Chechen Culture Minister Musa Dadayev declared. (Though apparently borrowing policies from the plot of Footloose (1984), which tells the story of a fight against culture crackdown in small-town United States, is A-OK.)

Local artists reportedly have until June 1 to “rewrite” their songs to follow the new rules, but for some of the world’s most beloved international artists, it’s safe to say much of their musical output won’t be appearing in Chechnya’s Top 40.

Naturally, the investigative reporters at POLITICO combed through our Spotify playlists (and consulted this website) to see which of our favorite tunes are out.

According to Chechen ruler Ramzan Kadyrov, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, the idea is to make music “conform to the Chechen mentality. | Alexey Druzhinin/AFP via Getty Images

Taylor Swift

Coming in hot at 160 BPM, dance-pop anthem Shake it Off is definitely out — as is the balladic wedding staple Lover (69 BPM) and country pop earworm Love Story (119 BPM).

Mega hits Look What You Made Me Do (128 BPM), Cruel Summer (170 BPM) and Bad Blood (170 BPM) are all in the trash too.

We guess Swift won’t be bringing her Eras tour to Grozny anytime soon. But maybe she can rerelease her discography again, adjusting the tempo just for her Chechen fans. (Kadyrov’s version) has a nice ring to it.


Women’s empowerment anthem Run the World (Girls) (127 BPM) doesn’t make the cut. Neither do Single Ladies (193 BPM) or 16 Carriages (127 BPM).

But not all is lost for Beyhives in Chechnya: Beyoncé does have a few tunes that survive the new ban, including the viral hit Texas Hold ‘Em (110 BPM), the timeless Halo (80 BPM) and Crazy in Love (99 BPM).

DrakeAriana Grande, and more

Say goodbye to most techno/trance songs, and to mambo, salsa and waltz music, all too fast under the new ban.

Drake’s hit God’s Plan is out — too slow, at 77 BPM. So are Headlines (152 BPM) and Hotline Bing (135 BPM).

If you’re an Ariana Grande fan, forget most of her upbeat discography, deemed too up-tempo for Chechnya’s music police: yes, and? (119 BPM), Side to Side (159 BPM), break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored (170 BPM), God is a woman (145 BPM) and 7 rings (140 BPM) are all out.

That’s not all: The iconic Footloose soundtrack (174 BPM) is a no-go, along with Miley Cyrus’ Wrecking Ball (120 BPM) and the Titanic’s tearjerker My Heart Will Go On (67 BPM). You should also scratch most of the Mamma Mia soundtrack: With the exception of Dancing Queen (100 BPM), most of the other fan-favorite hits are too fast.

The kicker? The new limit bans the Russian national anthem, which is usually performed at 76 BPM. Yikes, somebody tell Vladimir Putin.

The good news? They can always listen to the Belgian national anthem (114 BPM) instead.

So what else can you listen to?

Well, not much. You can listen to Baby Shark, which barely makes the cut with a BPM of 115. And if you feel festive, you can always stream Jingle Bells (116 BPM). But don’t get too festive: Jingle Bell Rock (120 BPM) is too fast.

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