Actually, standard Russian pronunciation is based on Moscow accent, and, as a rule, all teaching guides on Russian pronunciation are designed to train it. Nowadays, pronunciation in different regions is very similar, you will have no problem to understand Russian speaking people from any region or even from another country.
Here you can find examples of main Russian dialects:
However, thanks to TV and Internet, those differences are disappearing gradually, and today young people from different regions are mostly speaking with Moscow accent.
Pronunciation is my most important desire
I'm pleased with this site for it's excellent guide for correct pronunciation. I learned Spanish by immersion at work, but I have a lousy amount of American accent in my Mexican Spanish.
I would like to get my Russian accent correct right from the start. Much more important than learning grammar and vocabulary, which will just fall into place on it's own.
I have read that there is a way to speak from Saint Petersburg or Moscow. What is the difference? How will I recognize it and does it matter if I end up mixing the two when I talk?
For example, Spanish from Spain, Cuba and Mexico have accents so different that it is difficult to understand when knowing just one.
Any good links to spoken Russian, like TV or radio and what accent are they speaking with?
I thought that might be the case. Same thing is happening in the USA. From watching TV.
I have a little trouble following й sound. But will that just have to wait until my brain learns to hear Russian sounds properly?
Took me a while to develop hearing Spanish sounds correctly, a little longer to be able to say them properly. Trilling 'r' is easy now, but very hard to get. :-)