Armin van Buuren
Aliases: Amsterdance, Armania, Darkstar, E=mc², El Guitaro, Gaia, Gig, Gimmick, Hyperdrive Inc., Misteri A, Perpetuous Dreamer, Problem Boy, Rising Star, The Shoeshine Factory
Armin van Buuren – the most recognised face in trance, was born on 25th of December, 1976 in Leiden, The Netherlands. Armin came from a musical family and began experimenting with computer generated sounds when he was 14. He progressed from making low-profile mix tapes for friends to higher profile mixes when he discovered experimenting with different sequences on his computer through his uncle.
“I was so stunned by what I saw him doing on the computer, that I got addicted to creating music right there and then!”
He drew inspiration from the likes of French electronic music composer Jean Michel Jarre and Ben Liebrand. Liebrand provided Armin with guidance with his mixing and producing.
Just before fame hit, Armin thought it was wise to have a backup in case being DJ didn’t work out. He studied for a law degree and just when it came to the final year, Armin had struck fame. Nevertheless he found the right balance and graduated eventually. This has helped him create a successful dance label, called Armada.
Armada was created by Armin van Buuren, Maykel Piron and David Lewis in 2003. The name comes from using the first 2 letters of each founder’s first names. Based in Amsterdam, armada has slowly and steadily become one of the biggest powerhouse labels in the electronic dance music industry. With over 20 different sub-labels, nearly every major trance label is owned by Armada. A majority of the biggest names in trance owe their success to the Armada family.
“It’s not just love for music, it’s my passion. It goes beyond liking, and beyond a hobby, it’s about a way of living. Music is essential to my life”.
What really propelled Armin into the spotlight was the creation of the A State of Trance radio show. The most well-known weekly trance radio show, Armin selects tracks for a 2 hour mix every week, completely free. Most DJ’s have now followed in Armin’s steps and create their own weekly show. ASOT has reached over 500 episodes and has been airing for over 10 years now. Every 50 episodes, Armin announces a massive party in celebration for ASOT.
“What makes trance work so well is that it doesn’t stick to one style, and can incorporate electro, minimal, whatever it likes.”
Armin’s early productions have also become trance music staples. Blue Fear, Communication, Burned with Desire, Sail, Exhale are some of the most recognisable trance tracks ever produced. Armin has been voted the number 1 DJ on DJMag’s top 100 DJ poll from 2007-2010. He is the only DJ to hold the first spot for 4 years.