Andy Rossi has made the most of the opportunities and life skills China has presented. He is now a businessman by day and rockstar by night.
Andy Rossi developed and utilized every opportunity to carve out his career path in China. His flexible and somewhat impulsive behavior led him to be the production manager for an Italian company and the lead singer of the band Revolution.
“Here you have more space to learn faster because you need to do many things,” he said.
Rossi’s education in Italy was not set for China. Halfway through law school, he realized he did not want to pursue law.
“One night I discovered I should change what I have to study… I was in between philosophy and Chinese,” he said.
After graduating in 2004, he found a job at a trading company in Shanghai and immediately got on a plane to China. Though Shanghai is a modern city, Rossi said he found it too big. While there, he practiced his conversational Chinese skills but also learned English by watching television.
He eventually returned to Italy and found a job at a travel agency, arranging trips for Chinese tour groups in Europe. Soon Rossi grew tired of the office lifestyle and began feeling agitated.
“I began sending CVs out and after eight months a call arrived,” he said.
The man asked if Rossi wanted to go to China the following week, and he said “yes.”
Rossi did not know where Dongguan was, but his friends in Shanghai informed him of the city’s reputation at the time, saying it was dangerous. Rossi was unphased. The job involved working with factories in Chang’an selling chemical products. The factory and his apartment were in the middle of nowhere, he said.
Rossi got a taste of the nightlife when a friend invited him to Hollywood Baby Too in Dongcheng.
“It was the only bar in that area (at the time). So, everyone was there,” he said.
He immediately wanted to move to Dongcheng, but his boss said “no.” Rossi packed up his belongings and quit. Driving to Dongcheng, he called a real estate agent to look for an apartment. He eventually found a new job with an Italian bag company and began learning new skills. He went on to open a trading company and did that for four years.
Rossi is the singer for the Guangdong famous band Revolution. The classic rock band was formed in 2010 by coincidence after Rossi and the bass player met the guitar player in a coffee shop. Rossi did not have a music background but liked singing at KTV. His most memorable gig was the first one the band played in Hollywood Baby Too.
“It was the first time. I was so scared. We played 10 songs there, and I was standing there frozen,” he laughed.
They slowly got better and began playing paid gigs around Guangdong, and went on to play at larger venues. Rossi said the band is something all the members do for fun.