18 May 1957 (age 64)
Michael Cretu, also known as Curly M.C. (born May 18, 1957 in a suburb of Bucharest, Romania), is a Romanian musician best known as the creator of the Enigma project. His original name, Creţu, means "the curly-haired".
He has worked with many producers, musicians, and artists in his long career. These include Sandra Cretu, Frank Farian, Boney M, Goombay Dance Band, Peter Cornelius, Manfred "Tissy" Thiers and Mike Oldfield in his pre-Enigma days, and Jens Gad, Frank Peterson, David Fairstein, ATB, Jam & Spoon, Peter Ries, Ruth-Ann Boyle and Andru Donalds during the course of the project.
Cretu's first solo release was the single Wild River, in 1978. His first solo album was released in 1979 and was entitled Ausgewählte Goldstücke as a German release, and Moon, Light & Flowers as an English release. Cretu's second solo album, titled Legionäre, was released in 1983. This album had German lyrics and was sung by Michael. It was co-produced and supervised by Harald Steinhauer and mastered by Armand Volker. Cretu's third solo album was entitled Die Chinesische Mauer, and was released in 1985. The literal English translation of the title is "The Chinese Wall", or as it is better known, "The Great Wall of China". Like his previous album, this had German lyrics, was sung by Michael, and was co-produced by Armand Volker. This album was also released as a separate album with English lyrics and a different track listing under the name "The Invisible Man". Several of the tracks on "The Invisible Man" were edited slightly, and, therefore last for a different length than the German versions on Die Chinesische Mauer.
After Cretu's marriage to Sandra in 1988, he had an idea, following suggestions made by David Fairstein, for a musical "new age dance" project under the name, presented by Fairstein, of "Enigma". Cretu worked with Frank Peterson and David Fairstein to create their ground-breaking first single "Sadeness" which became a surprise hit. MCMXC a.D., the album, which was released in 1990, was hugely successful. It is thought to have sold about 30 million copies worldwide. One of the aims of Enigma was to present music that has never been heard before and is not being produced anywhere, which also forced Cretu to continually move in new musical directions and to stay ahead of imitators.
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