It was always Zayne Harshaw’s dream to have a band. He was diagnosed with autism at the age of four. When he was 14-years old, this self-taught guitarist would walk up to total strangers and ask them to be a member of his (at the time) non-existent band. At age 17, Zayne’s dream would become a reality on a snowy Saturday afternoon on January 19, 2013.
A Special Olympics teammate of many years joined as a rhythm guitarist. The autistic teen social group, Aspirations, which is held at the Nisonger Center at OSU, was where he met a bassist. The autistic teen social group held at Children’s Hospital would add a drummer. This foursome came together under the name of “Spectrum”.
The band name would eventually be changed to “Blue Spectrum” due to the “Spectrum” name itself being so prevalent and “Blue” being Zayne’s favorite color. The new name also brought new dimensions. Smooth vocalist, “Uncle Al” Jefferson, took over at bass and lead vocals. Jazz percussionist, Hosea Hooks, brought years of band leadership and impeccable musical skills. International award-winning and Nashville recording artist, Genene Blackwell, added her amazing keyboard talent to the Blue Spectrum family. Singer and songwriter, Eileen Motok, adds new dimensions with her expansive musical repertoire and high energy performances as vocalist. But even with the changes, the message remained the same.
Together they share a deep love of creating and performing music and living the impassioned motto of Blue Spectrum: “Life is not to be viewed through the single lens of a diagnosis but to be lived through the Spectrum of potential, promise and purpose”.