New Delhi: He pioneered the Indipop culture in India and gave us cult hits like ‘Aap jaisa koi’, ‘Made in India’ and ‘Kung Fu fighting’, but Biddu has now almost taken a sabbatical from music to concentrate on his new love - writing.
"In life it is good to try new things rather than tread a road one has been going down like forever. Music is still there in the canyons of my mind, but writing novels is fresh, something new, like taking a new lover," says the 68-year-old composer, who has come out with his debut novel ‘Curse of the Godman.’
In fact, he had signed a three-book deal with HarperCollins. The first - his autobiography ‘Made In India’ - was released in 2010. The third book in the series is set in Mumbai in the eighties.
"It is about a young street urchin and his sexual awakening as he comes of age. It is quite hilarious and fast paced," Biddu told reporters.
The idea to write ‘Curse of the Godman’ came to him in Spain.
"I either wanted to make a film, but I had already done that with ‘Star’, the other idea was to have a restaurant, but I prefer eating to cooking and the third idea was to write a novel. The genesis for ‘Curse of the Godman’ came to me in a week, and gradually as I began writing the various sub-plots started to come through," he says.
‘Curse of the Godman’ is set in areas around Darjeeling`s scenic tea plantations. It weaves together romance and deceit, mysticism and bigotry to bring to life the magic of the hills.
As the events unfold, Michael and Sarah Patterson, British owners of the thriving Silver Glade plantation, find their lives intricately enmeshed with all of it, and with the frightening figure of a Naga sadhu whom Michael glimpses on a dark night.
The sleepy little town wakes up to a number of murky incidents - a society lady’s murder, the appearance of a godman, the search for an elusive predator, the blossoming love between a Hindu and a Christian, and the furtive attraction between Sarah and her husband`s best friend, Sanjay Kapoor, who is also the manager of the plantation - all of which come together in a riveting climax.
Bangalore-born Biddu started his career playing in a pop band whose influences lay in the classic repertoire of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. Following his early success, he decided to head West and move into the international music arena.
He quickly struck gold, signing the unknown Douglas and producing `Kung Fu Fighting` which went on to become a global hit. He also wrote and produced hits for Tina Charles and soul legend Jimmy James.
Around this time, Biddu became involved in Indian music; he composed `Aap jaisa koi`, which set a new landmark for sales in India. He followed this up with a pop album `Disco Deewane` with Nazia which became the largest-selling pop album in Asian history and the first Indian album to hit the charts in 14 countries.
In 1995, he wrote and produced the three-million-selling album `Made in India` with singer Alisha Chinai. To date, Biddu has sold over 38 million records worldwide.
Ask him about the achievements he would always like people to remember and he says, "From an international point of view it has to be `Kung Fu Fighting`, `I Love to Love` and `I`ll go where the music takes me` plus the instrumental `Blue eyed soul` by the Biddu Orchestra, which started a craze for disco instrumentals.
As far as India is concerned it has to be `Aap jaisa koi`, `Disco deewane` and `Made in India` as they were all game changers in the Indian music scene."