Here is a selection of my sound recordings:
This is an audio tour of Bucharest made in February 2012. If you have been watching the weather news for this side of the world, you know it has been snowing a lot. I took a long journey across the town, walking on ice and snow and using the tram, bus and underground. I buy, I ask people for directions and I am very indiscreet when other people are talking on the phone. At the end you can hear the noise that a store’s roof is making under the pressure of the snowstorm.
Gypsies shouting after metal scraps on the streets of Bucharest – here’s a recording I wanted to do before even getting a recorder. When I first moved to Bucharest more than six years ago I was living in an old block, next to the embassy of Morocco. A gypsy would pass my street every day and it took me a while until I actually understood what he or she were shouting for. Now I live in another neighborhood, where blocks are taller and streets are noisier and there’s no trace of them.
Last autumn, I was biking on my old street when I hear her, shouting sharply: “Fiare cumpar!” (which translates something like “I buy metal scraps”) At some point she stops in front of a house and asks “N-aveti fiare vechi, domnii?” (Don’t you have old scraps, sirs?) That’s what she makes a living from. She collects from people old scraps of metal which lie around without any use, throws them in a cart or the back of a car and sells them. I heard the metal ends up in China and this is a very profitable business for the few who buy off the metal from the gypsies who shout after it and export it.
When I heard her, I was not in an ideal position for recording sound but I didn’t know when I will get another chance. I had my big old bike and a big rucksack and I couldn’t leave any of them behind. So I followed my muse carrying my bike, rucsack and microphone. We passed a school, cars, houses and people.
This is the recording of those moments.
Even if it’s cloudy and cold, on a Saturday afternoon the people of Constanta go out for a walk on the coast of the Black Sea. Next to the accordionist, there is a cartoonist doing a sketch of a girl called Roxy. March 2012