Nandu has been in the public eye ever since his teens but it
was with his performance as Judas in the Alyque Padamsee production of JESUS
CHRIST SUPERSTAR in 1974 that he really shot to fame. Nandu's role as Judas
was highly acclaimed in the Indian production which ran for a year and was considered
by many to be on par with the Broadway version. Son of the famous Marathi actor-director
Atmaram Bhende, music has been Nandu's calling since his childhood when he performed
for All India Radio with his sister, and later on in college with the rock group
"VELVETTE FOGG". The group with Nandu on lead vocals won many contests including
the Simla Beat Contest and went on to perform at the prestigious "Blow Up" discotheque
at the Taj Mahal Hotel, Bombay (Now called the 1900s). The Velvette Fogg disbanded
and was followed by "The Brief Encounter" which later merged with "The Savages"
to become "The Savage Encounter" under which name they performed for more than
Nandu's performance in "Superstar" as Judas made Dr Jabbar Patel cast him
as "Mack the Knife" in "Teen Paischacha
Tamasha", a Marathi Musical version of Brecht's "Three Penny Opera". This
musical adapted by P.L. Deshpande went on to perform over 200 shows and is still
remembered for it's path-breaking music score which was partly composed by Nandu.
Playing the title role of the deaf, dumb and blind boy in the Indian production
of Pete Townsend's "Tommy" followed
in 1982 for which Nandu scored the music, adding a couple of original compositions.
Recently, Nandu sang and acted the main role in the BPL--Best of Theatre --series
sponsored "Jaya" to great critical acclaim.
This was India's first original Rock Opera and was performed in grand style
with a cast of over 40 people. Nandu has also produced numerous Theater productions
which have gone to stage thousands of shows throughout the country. Some of
them are "The Fantastiks", "Double Trouble", "Hanky Panky", "Rashoman", "The
Yours, Mine and Ours Show" etc.
Nandu has sung playback for Hindi films for music directors such as R.D. Burman,
Laxmikant Pyarelal and Bappi Lahiri for whose film "Disco Dancer" Nandu went
on to fetch a Gold Disc. In 1980 Nandu teamed up with Music India to produce
the very successful dance albums "Disco Duniya" and" Disco Nasha". HMV snapped
up Nandu in 1986 and two lively disco albums followed "Disco Zamana" and Disco
Mazaa". Nandu then went on to record his first English album for HMV "GET ORGANIZED"
which featured his original compositions as well as a few songs from a collection
specially written for him by the Sahitya Academy Award winning internationally
acclaimed poet Nissim Ezekiel. The Hindi Pop Album "TERE LIYE" followed soon
after. In 1997, the recording company Tips, released "Aaa Jaane Jaa", a Remix
album with Nandu Bhende.In 2001, Nandu released another Remix album, this time for
Universal and in Marathi. It was called "Spicy Mango-Raapchick Remix" and became a
big hit among the youth of Maharashtra
In 1988, Nandu represented India at the FESTIVAL OF INDIA in the former USSR
where he along with his group performed seven shows in various parts of the
country including two in Moscow. He sang in Hindi, Marathi, English and in Russian
to the great delight of the Soviets. In 1993, the I.C.C.R. again send Nandu
with his group to Muscut to represent India at an International event. In April
'97, Nandu visited Korea where he went on a ICCR-sponsored tour, leading a delegation
of eight members .They had four very successful shows and Nandu was awarded
a gold cup for his singing.
Nandu sings and composes for advertising jingles and Avs and has composed
the soundtrack for numerous T.V. serials and documentaries. Nandu's TV serial
credits include "Cats"(Sony), "Kohra"(StarPlus), "Chandrakanta"(DD1),
"Tanha"(Star Plus), "Daayre" (Zee TV) "Jeena Isi Ka Naam Hai" (Zee TV), "Memsaab"
( TVI), "Rang Hai Rangachari" (TVI), "Chamatkar" (Sony), "Parakh" (DD1) Chunav
Chunauti 98 (Sony), "Yeh Hai Raaz" (Star Plus), "Maal hai to taal hain" (Star
Nandu has his own production companies "Music Software
" and "Spectrum Multimedia"
which are involved in the production of music albums, F.M. shows, radio and
TV jingles, theatre productions corporate launches, documentary and corporate
films, and other special events. Spectrum Multimedia has produced more than
50 music album projects for prestigious recording companies like Music India
(Universal Music) and HMV (EMI).Spectrum Multimedia has produced the very popular
Marathi FM shows "Hasat Khelat" and "Majhi Awadti Gaani" along with the Konkani FM show
"Geetacha Paus " for HMV-FM. These shows ran for several years and prominent Marathi
and Konkani artists served as DJs. Spectrum Multimedia (Events Division) has recently
undertaken the marketing of Indian entertainment events in foreign countries and the
New Year promises to be exciting for this growing company. Nandu has also entered the
field of film direction and directed the documentary "David Sassoon, The great
philanthropist" for ORT INDIA, an international organization.
In May, 1998 Nandu's own 32 track digital audio recording studio "IN
Sync Studios", featuring the state of the art equipment, opened in Juhu,
Bombay. In March '99, the studio was upgraded to 64 tracks . Nandu writes a column
called "An Equal Music" since the October'99 issue of the bi-monthly Studio
Systems Magazine. Between May 20, 2001 and May 04 2002 , he wrote a very popular weekly column
on Rock music for "The Times of India, Pune" called 'Rock
After a gap of several years, Nandu has once again started singing live to
the delight of his fans. Since July 2001, he has performed for many shows around
the country and is working on recording an album of his original works in the near