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DJ Mike Cruz has been spinning professionally for over ten years, Cruz began his DJ career like countless others, playing records as a teenager in his Rockland County, New York bedroom. Cruz took a spot at New York’s famed Palladium, which led to a nearly four-year gig at New Jersey’s Excalibur nightclub. Capitalizing on the buzz generated by his stint at Excalibur, Cruz guested at such renowned nightspots as New York’s Twilo and Sound Factory Bar, Miami’s Bar Room, Warsaw and Liquid and London’s Heaven.
I really enjoy experimenting with a variety of styles rather than remaining locked into one particular genre or sub-genre of dance music. I want to stir people up and take them on a journey through the various shades of house music and that’s definitely a challenge. My main priority is making them feel the excitement and energy that I’m feeling. It’s like a relationship; we feed off of each other to reach that higher place."
In June 1995, he was offered the coveted Thursday and Saturday night primetime spots at Krash, the Queens, New York nightclub that sees loyal Manhattanites riding the iron horse to hear Cruz spin [this year marks the DJ’s 7th Anniversary at the beloved hotspot]. At Krash, Mike cultivated a large following of dedicated fans that reveled in his wickedly intoxicating blend of underground deep and soulful, tribal-inflected grooves, rousing vocal anthems, legendary New York and Chicago house classics and mainstream dance music favorites. He even caught the attention of actress / singer Jennifer Lopez, who called upon Cruz to man the turntables for her debut album’s release party, as well as provide the musical backdrop for her 1999 Puerto Rican Day Parade appearance.
Never one to rest on his laurels, Cruz’s interests began to expand to the recording studio. In early 2000, he joined forces with business partner / musical collaborator Brian Bagnoulo and the two began creating awe-inspiring, dark and twisted soul-soaked remixes .underground and overground . for the likes of Seal, Joi Caldwell, Abigail and Gloria Gaynor and Exhale. Cruz’s own anthem “Movin Up” [released on Nervous Records], which featured the soaring vocals of Inaya Day and China Ro, speedily secured the #2 on Billboard’s Club Play Chart and remained in the top 20 for many weeks. Gaining massive support from house music heavyweights like Victor Calderone, Junior Vasquez, Danny Tenaglia, Jonathan Peters, Lord G and Peter Rauhofer [to name a few], the song continues to garner regular nightclub spins.
Currently, Cruz continues his rigorous DJ and production schedule maintaining residencies at Krash, as well as, at Manhattan’s Club Cheetah [formerly Sound Factory Bar] while his latest production is a diva-driven single with the amazing Sandy B. and China Ro, entitled “Medicine”. This unprecedented collaboration of dance music’s strongest female vocalists was released in June 2003 thru Nervous Records.
“Music is my life, tribal is my soul,” laughs Mike. It’s evident that whether he’s turning out club goers on the dance floors of his residencies, remixing records for today’s top dance music artists or writing and producing #1 Billboard dance hits, DJ / producer / remixer Mike Cruz continually welcomes the challenges of his critics rising to each occasion proving that he’s here to stay with no holds barred.
Mike Cruz lives in NYC.