Matthew Ward, best known as house/disco producer DJ Mighty Mouse, died suddenly in his sleep at his home in Spain Oct. 20 at 48. According to a statement from his label, Defected Records, Ward’s passing was unexpected.
“We are devastated to confirm that Matthew Ward aka Mighty Mouse, died suddenly last Thursday at his home in Spain,” read the statement. “Matthew died in his sleep from an aortic aneurysm. We are all lost without his enormous presence and talent. Our thoughts are with his partner, Ellen, and his Mum, Judy, as well as his wider family and many, many friends and fans.”
“Matthew was an incredible human being. A real, genuine guy,” adds Defected CEO Wez Saunders. “Hearing of his passing is a shock to us all. He will be sorely missed. Our thoughts are with his friends and family at this time.”
Though active for more than a decade as a DJ/producer and beloved for his Disco Circus remix series, Ward’s 2019 song “The Spirit” was his breakout anthem, released on Defected’s Glitterbox imprint and named Hottest Record in the World by BBC Radio 1 DJ Annie Mac’s show. His edit of ABBA’s “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!,” “Midnight Mouse (Revised),” also reached cult status after French DJ Folamour played it during his set at the FLY Open Air Festival in 2019.
Earlier this month, Ward released a remix of Ridney & Inaya Day’s “Like You,” saying in his final Instagram post that the track had “loads of support and it goes down really well in the club.”
Ward was slated to DJ a Halloween party at The Lofts in Newcastle-upon-Tyne on Saturday (Oct. 29).
See Defected’s statement, and some tributes from fellow DJs and British singer Rowetta, below.