Punya interviews Anadi, creator of SoundsOrange…
I am meeting Anadi at the Ammos Café (there are two places where you meet sannyasins in Corfu: at Ammos or at Akrotiri in Arillas). I am early and he has also arrived already. I see him from far get up from his chair and wave at me. He looks like a teenager, but when I approach him, and later talk to him, I sense his maturity, but I would never have guessed that he is over 40! His speech is so articulate that anyone hearing him turns green with envy. We jump from topic to topic (something my monkey mind enjoys as well) and his bubbling flow of speech is so fast that from the interview initially planned to only cover his online portal soundsorange.com we can write a beautiful portrait about his very interesting life.
When I was a young child I was deaf. I also had amazing experiences of visitations and astral projections. Most people would say “wow, that’s great,” but actually for me as a little kid it was freaky. I used to lay in bed at night thinking “don’t go to sleep, don’t go to sleep” because it was too much for me. At about the age of 10 or 11 I got my hearing back.
I had an operation on my ears and I think that because of not being able to hear at first and then suddenly being able to hear, I now hear better than most people. I don’t take hearing for granted! So it is no wonder that I became a musician. As a sound engineer, e.g., I could hear everything that was going on. I could hear all the different layers of sound and hear what was not fitting in – and that is a gift.
So those experiences (the visitations, astral projections and being deaf) ended up leading my whole life. I left home when I was very young. I was born in London, lived in Essex for a while and then my dad set me up with a flat in London on the condition that I went to college and passed some exams. You can well imagine: as soon as I got my hearing back I became such a rebel: it was like “wow!” I didn’t want to sit in a classroom on a sunny day and look at the fields and woods through a window. I was out of control!
I did my exams and got a job as a computer programmer. It was at Lyons Maid and Tetley. After three years I saw all these older programmers become contractors and at the ripe old age of about 20 I decided to do the same. I was earning a fortune but it was not what I really wanted. I worked for Shell and JP Morgan, to drop a few names, but after I had done this for a few years I had enough of it. The good part of it was that I had earned enough money to set up my own recording studio and so left the computing world. That’s when I started my record label and my music career.
It was just at the time when Rave music was taking off. The people were so in their hearts, the music was so uplifting, it was fantastic! Nowadays music has split into so many genres; but back then the music was a lot more melodic and was very hearty. Actually, that was a really transformational time for me. It was the time when ecstasy was commonplace and those experiences really took me into my heart. That was also the time when I started meeting all these great people with funny names…
I was into Buddhism, so it wasn’t too unusual that I would meet them. Also I was still looking to find something which would give me some insights about my experiences as a child. Various people I had met mentioned Osho and lent me books. And that was it! I didn’t just read his books – I devoured them. One after another, after another. There was this guy laying it all out with clarity and understanding: all my prayers were being answered. The combination of the party scene, meeting lots of sanyasins and reading lots of Osho books set me up for my times in Pune; and it really did answer so many of the questions that I had bubbling away in me for so long.
How old were you?
I was about 18 or 19, I think.
Did you then go and see Osho?
If I have any regrets it would be that I didn’t go to Pune while Osho was in his body. I was involved in so much music, having all these hits and all my dreams come true. I left it too late. It was always “next year, next year” and of course next year came too late! It would have been great to spend time with Osho.
When did you go to Pune?
I think it was 1993. It was the year we closed Fokus Records which I had founded together with a friend. When we started we were one of the few independent record labels that could afford to release records. Over the period of about three years everybody jumped on the band wagon. It got to the stage where everybody had a record label and we went from selling 15,000 records to selling less than 2,000. I realised we had had our day and I went off to Pune…
I came with a six-months visa but then I completely lost track of time and when I got to the airport my visa was two weeks out of date and so was my ticket home! When I got to Pune I had already caught amoebic dysentery. After Pune I spent time in Lucknow and there I caught giardia, so by the time I got to the airport I looked like a skeleton. I think the Indian embassy took pity on me and gave me an extension on my visa.
Then I kept going back. I would spend Christmas with the family and then on Boxing day I would fly out to India and not come back until March. That worked out really well for me and I did that for a number of years. I really enjoyed getting away from the cold British winters.
But lately I have not been back because of my businesses. I am involved in a company called ClientMailer that helps companies with their email marketing, obviously I run SoundsOrange.com and I also run another business called iMediaLibrary which is an online video streaming platform. It is streamed through my technology. The difference between us and YouTube is that my clients maintain control of their own video IP. They can control everything very easily: description, images, pay per view…
Let’s talk more about music. What do you play?
I play the guitar, the piano and I did a lot of singing. I am also a sounds engineer and a producer. After Fokus Records and my time spent at the ashram there was lots and lots of music. I produced so much music… It was mostly dance music. Then I got a bit bored with dance music and moved into live music. I created a band called ‘Coming up for Air’. We went on tour and produced a fantastic album. It didn’t get released unfortunately – the band split up and the recording studio I was working in went bust. It was a shame because I was so pleased with that album.
What did you learn from all that?
I learned not to get so attached to it all. I was so attached to the band, and the music and the album… I remember sitting in the house I was living in when I had one of those really insightful moments: “I just have to move on.” I really believed this album was going to be the one and in almost no time the band had split up and the studio had closed – suddenly I had no way of earning any money.
I was quite sad but I had a lot of support from friends and family. I remember pondering about new ways to earn money and so thought of going back to computers and started developing websites – just to make some money. And here I am, twelve years later, having written all this online software… Isn’t it funny how things turn out?
So in a way, the whole ‘world falling apart’ event in 2000 put me on a completely different track. (I have an astrologer friend of mine who does my chart from time to time and he keeps saying that I am on the right path – which is so good to hear after all of my experiences…)
All of that led me onto creating my great passion, a Heart, Body and Soul portal called SoundsOrange (about which we are reporting separately in Osho News). Everthing I have learned in my life: computer programming, sound engineering, music and meditation have led to it – everything is combined in this one project.
Punya, Osho News
Read our article on Anadi’s Heart, Body and Soul portal: SoundsOrange