DJ on the Autism Spectrum Uses Musical Mixes to Share His Unique Experience with Others

Diego Vargas fell in love with music when he was in sixth grade. That’s when he began playing the saxophone. He later got involved in his school’s theater group and joined the high school band. And now he’s also a DJ and an audio engineer, coordinating the sound at New Life Baptist Church on Sunday and making musical mixes for people to dance and party to at various events on the other days of the week; it’s his way of connecting with people.

Diego, who is on the autism spectrum, attends California’s Fresno City College. He says his autism has caused him to struggle with subpar cognitive skills, difficulty problem-solving, and trouble with social interaction. But his DJing and music production have opened up a new avenue for communicating with others in a low-pressure way.

Photo: YouTube/Ne10

“I just love the fact that I’ve created something that they’re dancing to,” he says. “It’s such a great feeling. Let’s just say anything with a fader or some buttons, I’ll get to it!”

Diego, who plays his music as DJ Ne10, is glad he broke into the world of making his own music instead of just playing things others had created.

Photo: YouTube/Ne10

“DJ Tiesto, Armin van Buuren, Benny Benassi… those folks that were big DJs back then, I always thought I wanted to be like them,” he says. “I realized years later that there’s more to it than just DJing. That’s why I got into music production, audio engineering, start from the ground up… that’s what I love about the fundamentals.”

Diego hopes he’ll get to work in a studio or stadium one day, making unique music of his own to share with the world.

Photo: YouTube/Ne10

“There’s so much as to what you can do. They say the sky is the limit, but literally, your imagination is the limit,” he says.

Diego’s latest playlist, the “Spectrum EP,” is something he hopes can help other people understand what his life is like on a day-to-day basis as a person on the autism spectrum. “It’s to kind of show what it’s like to be autistic without seeing it, but instead, hearing it,” he says.

Photo: YouTube/Ne10

A lot of people on the spectrum struggle with not feeling seen in their communities. For Diego, though, it’s all about being heard. And we’re so glad he was able to find his niche making music people enjoy and also expressing himself in a unique way.

Learn more about his music on his website or watch the video below to gain some insight into this amazing young man’s life and the legacy he’s creating with his music.

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