Y’all Want This Party Started, Right? Meet TikTok Dance Sensation CindeeMindy

She's a dancing machine

If you follow DanceTok, you likely know rising star CindeeMindy. The New Jersey native posts joyful videos of herself dancing in her living room to all kinds of music, from '80s club tunes to merengue.

"I try to post every morning,” says the self-employed entrepreneur who spent 20 years working on Wall Street. "I get up in the morning and have a cup of coffee, try to get a little dolled up, and then I'll do a song."

Here, the vivacious Dancing Queen—known as much for her big smile and positive vibes as well as her moves—explains how she started on TikTok, delves into her lifelong love of music and reveals her hopes for the future, which include getting booked on a talk show.

MUSE: What inspired you to create a TikTok account?

CindeeMindy: When we were on lockdown during Covid, I was looking for an outlet to relieve some of my stress. So I joined TikTok and started posting every day. I'd been doing it for three years until I finally went viral.

@cindeemindy I can play now #fyp #danceyourstyle #newjersey #positivevibes #behappy #bekind ♬ Set It Off (Vocal) - Strafe
The dance video you made to Strafe's 1984 club hit "Set It Off" was the one that went viral in a big way and changed everything for you.

Yes. It was on Dec. 28. It was my first take on the video. I just did it. All of a sudden, my phone's going click, click, click, click. My son goes, "Mom, you’re going viral!" I go, "No way." He goes, "Yes, mom, look at your page!" I had 7,000 followers on that day, then about 7,500 in two weeks. Right now, I have 80,000 followers.

Actually, you had 80,000 a few days ago. You are up to 83,000 right now.

Oh my goodness!

@jakiyajoseph #duet with @CindyMindy #fyp Wait she cut me up! #setitoff ♬ Set It Off (Vocal) - Strafe
When you saw so many people on TikTok doing "Set It Off" duets with you, how did that feel?

I was feeling a lot of joy. I kept going every day, and I said, "Someday, one of these videos is going to hit." Who knew "Set It Off" would be my first to take? I couldn't believe it.

What kind of reactions do you get to your videos in general?

I would say 99 percent, maybe 99.5 percent are positive. They're like, "I come to your page every morning to see your video. You got me started on this day, Cindy. We love you. Thank you so much."

Women are telling me that I'm helping them get through menopause and cancer—that they're living in a shell, and I'm bringing them out of the darkness. I say, "Please smile. Get off the couch."

When you record dance videos, do you usually get it right on the first take, or do you do multiple takes?

If I try to do a dance trend, I have to go a couple of times. Then, I'll look at it and say, "No, that move is not right." Right now, I want to do the Beyoncé ["Texas Hold ’Em"] country dance challenge, but I have to practice. As far as my regular songs, it's one shot and done.

When did your love of dancing start?

I was raised in a family of 10. My mother played music for us. I know the music from the '50s and '60s—all the doo-wop. And there was always music in the neighborhood. We went to barbecues. We went to house parties or played cards. There was always music, and I always loved dancing. So I have a lot of soul.

I was raised in Hoboken, and there was a tiny candy store, a hole in the wall. It consisted of a little case with candy in it, a jukebox and a pool table in the back. I used to play records and dance to Michael Jackson and when I was 12 or 13.

When I was 17, my sister let me go clubbing with her in Hoboken. The clubs and the high school that I went to were culturally diverse. So, I embraced each culture—soul, hip-hop, merengue. I like it all.

@cindeemindy I tried 😂 #onthisday #fyp #percolator #newjersey #happiness #dance ♬ original sound - MR. OH MY GAWD 😎
You dance like someone who spent a lot of time in the clubs. Did you ever go to the famous clubs across the river in New York City back in the day?

Decades ago, my boyfriend took me to Studio 54 and the Peppermint Lounge. But I predominantly hung out in New Jersey. The clubs were fantastic here. There was one in Hoboken called Liberty. We had a DJ there. His name was Phil. He'd be up in that booth, and I tell you, I would dance for five hours straight. It wasn't about alcohol. It was about the music, and I loved it.

What do your kids think of your TikTok success?

I have a boy and a girl. They're grown. They support my page. They don't want to do videos with me. But they do support me.

You also post cooking videos. Will you expand more in that area?

The main area is always going to be dancing. But I have to tell you, with the cooking, I might be capturing additional audiences as well. They say, "Your food video is so good. You explain it so well. We want more." The funny thing is, I don't have an appropriate setup. I literally hold the camera with one hand and the spatula with the other.

Have you gotten any opportunities because of your growing success on TikTok?

I do like the interviews. I would actually like to go on a talk show. I don't know if that's ever going to happen. I really just want my page to continue to grow.

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