Stilyagi

The era of X-Ray discs roughly corresponded to that of the Soviet youth subculture called 'The Stilyagi'.  They would have made up a significant group of those in the market for bootlegs.   The word literaly means 'Style hunter' and sometimes gets translated as 'Dudes' or 'Hipsters'.  It was a derogatory name like Beatniks, Hippies or Punks originally were in the West.

The Stilyagi provoked  ridicule and disapproval when they appeared on the streets of Moscow and St Petersburg in the late 1940s. The first reference to them as an actual group was a derisory piece in the satirical magazine Krokodil in 1949:

"The most important part of their style is not to resemble normal people. And as you see, their efforts take them to absurd extremes. The stilyaga knows the fashions all over the world.. He's studied all the fox trots, tangos, rumbas, lindy hops in detail, but he confuses Michurin with Mendeleev, and astronomy with gastronomy... they flutter above life's surface, so to speak"

The authorities couldn't do very much about the Stilyagi apart from getting the Komsomol volunteer youth brigades to bully them on the streets and instructing the media to ridicule them.  The cartoons here are from further editions of Krokodil. They portray the Stilyagi as lazy leeches, but  unintentionally and ironically make them look cool.., and stylish.