Long respected as a producer, Mark Mendoza is also a powerhouse DJ with a vast knowledge of music. His blog MarkMendozaMixes.blogspot.com is a tour de force of dance music history and a lovely sample of what’s hot and what’s new.
As a Music Business & Technology major at New York University, Mark attained an internship and was subsequently hired at Jane Brinton and Duffy Macri’s famed management firm, “This Beats Workin’.” Their roster included such DJ/remixers as Shep Pettibone, Junior Vasquez and Justin Strauss. This Beats Workin’ proved to be a valuable learning experience for him where he acquired the necessary skills, along with years as a DJ, that would take him to the next level in the dance music business.
By 1991, Mark secured an A&R position for the hypnotic, jazzy dance label Kaleidiascope Records, located in Newark, NJ. Under Mark’s tenure, he brought some of the hottest dance music artists to the label such as Ce Ce Rogers, Jovonn and Jephté Guillaume. Always the “forward thinker,” he used this opportunity to launch his production company, “280 West Productions”, named after Route 280, a main highway that cuts through Essex County… and where most of his musical ideas would originate while driving home from work, as well as some of NY/NJ’s hottest clubs! Under this moniker, Mark churned out several smash hits: “Love’s Masquerade” with Diamond Temple, “Scattered Dreams” with Kenny Bobien, “Got Me Groovin” with Sha’ron and the frenetic instrumental goodie, “The Dip”.
He later joined forces with one of NJ’s innovative DJs, the legendary Hippie Torrales (Club Zanzibar/Dock’s). Together they formed MenTor Productions (synchronization of the first three letters of their surnames). Under this tight-knit production outfit came several original projects and countless remixes such as: Rosie Gaines – “I Want U” and “Closer Than Close” (over a million copies sold) and Kimara Lovelace – “Circles” (#1 Billboard Dance Chart) along with remix work for Jocelyn Brown, Evelyn “Champagne” King and Lisa Stansfield among others.
Mark later went on to partner at Phuture Sole Recordings and put out some soulful gems, including “My Words” (Jon Pierce) and “Don’t” (Monday Michiru). In addition to A&R duties, Mark continued work in the studio with his remixes of the label’s first 2 singles and original productions with Diamond Temple: “Fly” and “I Never Knew” featuring the backing vocals of Ray, Goodman & Brown. He has now moved on and formed his own business under his production name “280 West”.
Check him out doing guest appearances on DHP Radio and Cyberjamz for his live show “280 West Radio”, then keep an ear out for new productions.
Written by Kris Flowers (updated 2013 by Brazen Muse Entertainment)
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