Physical challenges don’t stop teen rapper’s music

Grayson Morley, 17, a student at Butler Tech School of the Arts who has cerebral palsy, has created a rap song with a video on Youtube and available on music streaming apps. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

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Grayson Morley, 17, a student at Butler Tech School of the Arts who has cerebral palsy, has created a rap song with a video on Youtube and available on music streaming apps. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Boy is student at Butler Tech.

Local teen Grayson Morley’s physical challenges are also his opportunities as the budding rapper uses his cerebral palsy and discrimination toward it as inspirations for his music.

The Butler Tech junior recently posted his first performance video on YouTube and plans to expand his music toward a possible career.

“It’s my first official music video of the song ‘WARM UP,’” Morley said.

“It talks about some of my frustration and some of the things I’ve experienced in my past,” said Morley. “It’s about this is what I am now (rap artist) but it’s a warmup of what is coming in my future.”

“I’ve also dealt with a lot of ignorance of people toward that (cerebral palsy) and that is some of the frustration I deal with in the song,” he said.

“I’m very passionate about it.”

When Morley, who is studying at Butler Tech’s School for Arts, performs on stage in school shows, he uses a tall chair, leaning against it to steady himself from the occasional balance difficulties caused by his condition.

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“That is my only physical drawback for making music.”

Morley’s teacher Zach Gabbard, a notable musician in his right who performed earlier this week on national TV at Jimmy Kimmel Live! with The Black Keys group, said he was impressed from the first day of classes last fall with the teen’s dedication.

The instrumental music instructor for high school students at Butler Tech said Morley “has had a vision and drive since day one.”

“All I’ve done is help him facilitate that vision. He writes the songs and produces the songs,” said Gabbard, who is a 20-year veteran of the music industry.

“There are no limitations in what he can do at all. He actually has a vision and a message, which is completely amazing at his age,” he said.

Morley credits Butler Tech, which is one of Ohio’s largest career school systems, with “giving me opportunities to learn professionalism in being a musical artist.”

“They have taught me things I didn’t expect to learn and I thought I would have to learn on my own the hard way.”

“My goal in the long run is to be signed by a record label. But more importantly for me, it’s about pursuing my dream and having fun with it while helping other kids who have cerebral palsy. Having it isn’t easy,” he said.

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