Mike Bugout goes nimrod and can really do it all. His mash ups are sleek, his sets are versatile, he spins at innumerable clubs throughout Manhattan on any given night and holds residency at Deko Lounge in New Jersey. I would like to thank Mike Bugout for taking the time out of his schedule to answer these questions for us.
RD: Lets start off with some basic info, who are you? How old are you? Where are you from? What inspired you to start DJing? How long have you been DJing?
MB: Hi I'm Mike Bugout, a DJ/Producer from Westchester, NY. I’m 32 and have been DJing since I was 11 believe it or not. I started spinning with my friend Paulie when we both looked up to his older brother Rob who was a DJ. I used to practice on his equipment until I got my own. DJ’d sweet 16s and parties through high school, bars in college until I finally started clubs. I started on vinyl, carrying crates of records then moved on to CDs and now on a laptop with Traktor.
RD: What is the insight behind Bugout?
MB: I originally had a different DJ name and I entered a contest on a show called “Extreme Groove Radio” on a Long Island radio station. But right before the contest I got into a disagreement with the head of the show on a message board so I figured I’d send my mix in under an alias so he’d judge it fairly, DJ Bugout. I won- and then I met all the big producers I looked up to (Mike Macaluso, Richie Santana, Anthony Acid and Sal Parm (Plasmic Honey) – Sal told me that DJ Bugout wasn’t gonna fly without a first name, so that’s where Mike Bugout comes from.
RD: Any productions in development?
MB: Working on a few different things right now. I don’t want to name any because I’m at the point where sometimes I’ll work on a track and then just scrap it haha. But I am pretty far along on a unofficial remix (Bootleg) of a popular radio song right now that I think is going to work nicely in my sets. Stay tuned.
RD: What hardware/software do you use while producing/mixing?
MB: Production-wise I’m using Logic with a bunch of plug ins on a Mac. For DJing I use Traktor with the CDJ’s normally. However sometimes I bring out the Traktor S4 controller which allows me the ability to use 4 decks and really do a lot more.
RD: What other genres of music are you interested in?
MB: I listen to pretty much anything. I love hip hop but it sucks to see the direction it’s gone in. I grew up listening to Michael Jackson, Paul McCartney, 80’s metal and Freestyle so go figure.
RD: I heard some of it in your set the other night, what is your take on Moombahton?
MB: I think its great and its getting more recognition lately. I always try to mix a little into my sets to kinda break up the bpms. It also satisfies anyone in the crowd who is looking for a bit slower of a tempo to dance to.
RD: How much of your daily routine is dedicated to music?
MB: I’d say more than half of it. I’m actually an attorney during the day but I still find time to check websites and listen to music. I’m always making new playlists and remembering older songs I want to move back into sets. Then something will hit me about an edit I’d like to do. Music is constantly on the brain.
RD: You’ve been opening/closing for some big names lately such as Chuckie, Nervo, Laidback Luke, AN21 & Max Vangeli, do you ever get anxious? What helps you cope with pressure?
MB: I definitely get nervous before playing with anyone big in business. Most of the guys are cool, especially when they see I’m not some rookie who is dropping every bomb record before they get on. Regardless I still have nerves, but my girlfriend always tries to keep me calm and alcohol usually helps too.
RD: I had the pleasure to attend Ibizafest the other night at Kastel, when you dropped ‘Kick The Epic Motherfucker Out Of Babylon’ for the first time, you killed it, any other mash ups we should keep an eye out for?
MB: Wow what a party that was huh? I’m excited to be back there on January 28th to celebrate my birthday in NYC. And thank you, that’s a mashup I thought of the minute I heard the original Dada Life track. I probably make a new mashup once a week to try and keep my sets fresh and give people something they can’t hear anywhere else. Some I release and some I don’t.
RD: You hold residency at Deko Lounge in New Jersey, what goes down over there?
MB: Hands down the best party I’ve ever been a part of. Lisa & Johel (along with owners Demetri & Kosta) called me in May of 2007 asking me to be the resident of a new 18+ party on Wednesday nights. We started in June 07 and haven’t looked back. I play every week to a crowd of anywhere from 600-1000 or more with my homie JG mixing in some hip hop and various stuff. We do crazy promotions and every now and then I get to share the booth with guys like Laidback Luke, Avicii, Steve Aoki, Dirty South, DJ Camilo to name a few. I really wouldn’t trade it for the world, it’s the most energetic crazy crowd I’ve ever played for (and continues to be)!
RD: Who are your favorite musicians?
MB: My #1 favorite Producer and DJ is Laidback Luke. His knowledge both inside and outside the booth (along with his skills) is basically the blueprint of what I want to do. Plus he’s so helpful to me with advice and production tips (as well as TONS of other up and coming DJs and producers), and yet still finds the time to respond to every person who tweets him on twitter. Amazing. In addition, I love the Swedish House Mafia, Tiesto, Chuckie, and tons of other DJs/Producers.
RD: I know you are spinning at Pacha NYC for New Year’s Eve, what can we expect from your set? What time will you be spinning?
MB: I’m really excited for this event. I’ll be opening up the basement at 9pm sharp starting things off with some feel good records and groovy deep stuff. The n it’s upstairs to ring in 2012 with my girlfriend and my favorite DJ Laidback Luke.
RD: What is your favorite track at the moment?
MB: It’s so hard to pick just 1! I made an edit of Avicii’s megahit Levels which always works with the crowd. I’m also really loving Gregori Klosman’s Kameha and Tommy Trash’s remix of Slumber.
RD: What are some goals you would like to achieve during your career? How do you plan on accomplishing these goals?
MB: I really won’t stop until I reach the level of the producers and DJ’s I look up to. I feel like I have the talent and have established the connections I need to. I plan to put in all the work I need to, and more. To me, it doesn’t even feel like work because I love it so much. I’ll sit down to simply lay down a snare into a track and 2 hours later have a track built.
RD: Where can you see yourself in 2012?
MB: 2012 I feel is going to be a huge year. I see myself playing more east coast gigs, hopefully branching out west. I already have Croatia booked this summer. And most importantly to step my production game up a few levels. At the same time, I want to continue to give all my energy to my residency at Deko because I feel like that is my true backbone. My manager & girlfriend Nicole consistently pushes me to keep improving and to never settle so with all that I have going on, I feel like I’m on the brink of doing some big things.
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