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Armin Van Buuren
In 1995, van Buuren attended Leiden University, and a local student club provided the venue for his first DJ gigs. The same year he was fortunate enough to have some demos included on compilations, and when the money came in, it was rolled back into producing 12"s. Cyber Records released his first hit, "Blue Fear," in 1995, and by 1999 his "Communication" was successful enough to get him signed to AM:PM. He also formed his own label, Armind, in 1999 and met Dave Lewis, a man responsible for jump-starting the careers of DJ Tiësto and Ferry Corsten. A collaboration with Tiësto yielded his biggest hit yet on Armind, "Eternity," and marathon five-hour sets brought him more attention. High-profile remixes of Madison Avenue's "Don't Call Me Baby" and Wamdue Project's "King of My Castle" followed, and numerous mix CDs were released on United Recordings.
By 2002 he'd placed number five in DJ Magazine's Top 100 and was hosting his own weekly show on the Dutch ID&T radio station. By the end of 2003 he found time to set the worldwide record for longest DJ set (12 and a half hours at a club in The Hague), finish his law degree, and release his first non-mix CD, 76. Shivers followed in 2005, with Imagine arriving in 2008. His 2010 effort, Mirage, featured singer Sophie Ellis-Bextor along with fellow producers BT and Ferry Corsten. Van Buuren returned in 2013 -- after numerous mix albums, including his annual additions to the A State of Trance series -- with his fifth studio album, Intense. The album was expanded in 2015 as Intense: The Most Intense Edition, a set that turned the original LP into a four-CD/one-DVD box featuring remixes and recordings of live gigs. His collaboration with Cosmic Gate, "Embargo," landed that same year. The track would appear on Van Buuren's sixth studio album, the Dutch chart-topping Embrace, which also featured Gavin DeGraw, Hardwell, and Mr. Probz.
In 2016, he continued his State of Trance series with the 13th installment, A State of Trance 2016. ~ David Jeffries