Diplo has revealed that he very nearly drowned 20 years ago in the Ganges River in India because his friend told him it was safe to swim in it.
The superstar DJ/producer told the story in a recent interview with The Oxford Union, Oxford University’s prestigious debating society. Throughout the hour long conversation with the students, the artist – real name Thomas Wesley Pentz – told numerous stories about his life and career, ranging from his teenage job at Subway, his first excursions into music production and his entrepreneurship as a vinyl collectors/salesman.
In the story of his near death experience, Diplo explains how while travelling around India with the intention of buying records to sell back home in the U.S. he met up with his friend Brent who one day suggested they swam in the Ganges together, assuring him that it would be safe.
“Right when I got into the water I was sucked down like 20-feet,” he remembered in the interview. “[It was] Complete pitch black darkness, I couldn’t see anything, I for sure knew I was dying… I remember swimming and choking to death in the water and I remember seeing a little girl pointing at me from the riverside screaming that there’s a dead guy in the water.”
Luckily, he managed to grab onto a large rock and drag himself onto it and a boat came to rescue him. He did, however, decide that he should probably not hang out with Brent anymore. “I decided I had to get rid of Brent,” he said. “He was crazy.”
That’s just one of the insightful stories shared by the prolific artist in the interview. It’s well worth a watch. Check it out below. The Ganges story feat. Bret starts around the 3:30 mark.
Diplo’s been very busy lately, collaborating with Labrinth and Sia as LSD and working with MØ again on the summery ‘Stay Open’. He also helped produced a World Cup anthem with Will Smith.