Guitarist with autism wows listeners with brilliant performances

Zayne Harshaw, founder of Blue Spectrum, performs at the ARC of Ohio People First dance on July 12, 2019, at the Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center in Lewis Center, Ohio. (Doral Chenoweth III/Columbus Dispatch/TNS)

Zayne Harshaw, founder of Blue Spectrum, performs at the ARC of Ohio People First dance on July 12, 2019, at the Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center in Lewis Center, Ohio. (Doral Chenoweth III/Columbus Dispatch/TNS)

The only audience Zayne Harshaw trusted when he started playing the electric guitar was the darkness.

He locked the bedroom door, turned off the lights and for months the then-14-year-old would strum alone, too fearful to let anyone see him working to mimic the music of legendary guitar players.

Then one day Zayne placed his amplifier in the window when his dad and older brother were walking out of their Gahanna, Ohio home.

Gene Harshaw heard Jimmy Hendrix’s famous “Purple Haze” guitar intro blaring and told his oldest boy, Marquise, to go tell Zayne to turn the radio down.

“Dad that isn’t the radio,” Marquise said. “That’s Zayne playing.” . . .

Read more by Mike Wagner at Daily Republic