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Andi Dumitrescu, Musician & Visual Artist, Talks About the Books That Boosted All Components of His Career Path

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Andi Dumitrescu is a Romanian visual artist and musician, leader and co-founder of the folk-rock band Bucium.

Bucium is defined by the use of two violins together with guitar, bass, drums, traditional instruments, and voice. Their live performances synchronize music with thorough video projections and spectacular mappings.

They mix Romanian legends and fairy tales with an introspective, spiritual sound, brought to a contemporary form. With every show and song, listeners are able to recall their childhood’s purity, back when they were listening to fairy tales and exploring a fantastic universe.

The band’s mission isn’t to go back to traditions and origins, but only to help people understand them better. It’s in their belief that by understanding mythology in depth, you can also understand people’s soul and be able to appreciate ourselves a bit more.

Andi Dumitrescu is Bucium’s voice, composer, writer, but also guitars, wind instruments and keyboard player.

When he’s not busy creating new Bucium materials, Andi is working as a video producer, director and editor for ads, documentaries or music videos.

Keep on reading to find out more about the books that left deep marks on Andi, helped him along his career path, and in what way are books similar to movies.

Estimated reading time for this interview is 7 minutes. If you'd rather listen to it, you can do it on iTunes, Google Play or Stitcher.

What’s your favorite book and why? Business and non-business, if possible.

I chose my favorite book with emotion and it’s Martin Eden, probably because it reminds me of my adolescence. If I had to make a more rational choice, I’d go with Ulysses or The Master and Margarita, but I think that choice is a bit snobbish. 🙂 A business book that I re-read from time to time is Producer to Producer, by Maureen A. Ryan.

Was there a moment, specifically, when something you read in a book helped you? Can you tell me about it?

The strongest connection I’ve ever had with a book was when I first read a collection of folk poetry and naturally started working on the first tracks of the Miorița album. It was an epiphany and a moment that is still stuck with me. It was as if I had entered a world long-gone, where I managed to bring forth through my music the feeling of people that have been gone for hundreds of years.

What books had the biggest impact on you? (perhaps changed the way you see things, dramatically changed your career path)

The Recording Engineer Handbook and The Mixing Engineer Handbook. These are the books that helped me record music at the level I hoped for. For years I was frustrated that Romania doesn’t have even one sound engineer that could rise to the level of Western ones, and this frustration pushed me to learn recording techniques which are, in my opinion, the most important steps in producing an album. Even more important than mixing or mastering.

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What books would you recommend to youngsters interested in your professional path? Why? (no number limit here)

My career path is made of several components, all of them main ones: sound engineering, film editing, movie directing, composition and vocal singing. That’s what I want to do in life and this is what makes me happy. For each of these, I’ve had a book to help me along the way: The Eye is Quicker by Richard D. Pepperman, Cut by Cut by Gael Chandler, The Technique of Film and Video Editing by Ken Dancyger, Directing by Mike Goodridge, Cinematic Storytelling by Jennifer Van Sijll, Sound for Picture by Tom Kenny and The Rock’n’Roll Singer’s Survival Manual by Mark Baxter.

I’m interested in finding out more about your reading habits. How often do you read? In what format?

In the last few years, very little, generally hardcopies. I can’t read off of an iPad or Kindle better than I can read manuals or tutorials: I find no pleasure in digital reading. There is an imbalance between the books I bought in the past years vs. the books I actually read. It frustrates me that I always postpone reading for my moments of peace, but these are so rare nowadays 🙂 I’m an expert in postponing things in order to perfect them and next year, I plan on building the house in which I’m going to read :))

How do you make time for reading?

This is the problem: I don’t do it anymore. In past year, I haven’t had one single free weekend and I lack the habit of reading before bedtime.

Do you take notes or have any other technique for conquering the torrent of information?

No, never. I dislike underlining, highlighting and any other doodles on books, I feel like they’re destroying a temple. :))

How do you choose what books to read next?

There are so many mandatory reads which I have yet to read myself, so I’ve stopped looking for new books. It’s easier for me to choose books related to my profession by browsing Amazon rather than making fiction choices, where I’m really far behind.

Do you prioritize the books recommended by certain people? Is there anyone that you consider a book-recommendations guru?

I think that it’s the same as with movies: you can never be perfectly compatible with another person when it comes to taste. I have friends who liked movies which I’ve found terribly boring and that’s why I never listen to recommendations unless I read more about the book and gather several opinions.

Last question: what book are you currently reading and what are you expecting to gain from it?

I never read a single book at once, because I get bored really fast. I am currently reading: Bruce Springsteen – Born to Run, Einstein’s Puzzle Universe, Miles Davis with Quincy Troupe and I Am Ozzy. I’m going through a physics and biographies period. :))

Links where you can follow Andi Dumitrescu or find out more about his projects:

All books mentioned by Andi Dumitrescu in this interview:

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