My comments on the article Joanna Stingray, the California girl who rocked Russia and spread the word by Marc Bennetts in The Times, 1 January 2021.
Stingray stuffed reel-to-reel tapes and lyrics into her leather jacket and boots to evade Soviet customs guards. “I was so enchanted by the music that I was completely blind about the dangers of being caught,”
I am pretty sure she was under careful surveillance. If she managed to get tapes out of the Soviet Union, it was because she was allowed to. I am not saying she necessarily collaborated with the Soviet intelligence. Nevertheless, the Soviets must have decided it was in their interest to let the tapes out.
P.S. The article doesn’t dwell on such mundane bits as a permit to stay. These are the informative bits.
Grebenshchikov was a Komsomol member, the youth wing of the Communist Party. Presenting these guys as independent or contesting the system is ridiculous. Authorities had everything under control, including fabrication of fake dissidents. They played and recorded because the authorities wanted them to.