John O’Leary welcomes 15-year-old singing sensation Sparsh Shah onto the Live Inspired Podcast to share how his disability doesn’t define him.
I’ve been so eager to bring Sparsh Shah onto the Live Inspired Podcast since I was first introduced to him in March 2017. Fifteen-year-old Sparsh shares about being born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta, or “Brittle Bone Disease”, and how he hasn’t let it define his life.
Sparsh, also known by his rapper name Purythem, went viral with his rendition of Eminem’s Not Afraid and since sang the National Anthem at Madison Square Garden. He radiates positivity while owning his disability with awe-inspiring grace.
Today’s conversation is beaming with contagious optimism + resilience that will leave you inspired.
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- Sparsh was born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta, also known as Brittle Bone Disease.
- Sparsh has suffered almost 130 fractures, including his skull.
- “I’ve dissed my disability.”
- There is always a valley before the hill. Sometimes the deeper the valley, the higher the hill.
- Ragarap: Sparsh began studying classical Indian + Western vocal music, blending aspects of each into his performances and creating his own sound he calls “ragarap”.
- Rapper Eminem became an inspiration to Sparsh because of his dedication to improving his skills + overcoming a troubled background.
- Sparsh chose to sing Eminem’s Not Afraid because of the uplighting lyrics that made him feel unstoppable; it ultimately became a viral hit viewed over 75 million times.
- Watch Sparsh Shah’s TEDx Talk, where he speaks of turning the impossible to “I am possible”, here.
- “When one door closes, another opens. We often look so long, hard and regretfully at the closed door, we forget that there was a door open for us.”
- Why waste our life in the past when we can think about what to do now.
- “The past is history, the future is a mystery. The present is the greatest gift we can receive.” – Bil Keane
- “Sometimes the storms interrupt our daily lives.”
- Follow Sparsh on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
If you enjoyed Sparsh’s optimistic outlook of his disability, listen to Live Inspired Podcast ep. 7 with hearing-impaired comedian Kathy Buckley and Live Inspired Podcast ep. 63 with paralyzed barrel racer Amberly Snyder.
SPARSH SHAH’S LIVE INSPIRED 7
1. What is the best book you've ever read? How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey.
2. What is a characteristic or trait that you possessed as a child that you wish you still exhibited today? Resilience and optimism. My dad said I had a smile that would light up anyone’s face.
3. Your house is on fire, all living things and people are out. You have the opportunity to run in and grab one item. What would it be? My MacBook.
4. You are sitting on a bench overlooking a gorgeous beach. You have the opportunity to have a long conversation with anyone living or dead. Who would it be? Jesus and I would ask him, “how and why is it that the life that is so imperfect, you made it perfect the way it is?” I’ve realized in life things are perfectly imperfect.
5. What is the best advice you've ever received? No matter what happens in your life, don’t give up on your passion. No matter how many bones you break, your voice will never break. You can do anything in life, you’ve come here for a reason.
6. What advice would you give your 20-year-old self? (Sparsh it not 20-years-old yet!)
7. It's been said that all great people can have their lives summed up in one sentence. How do you want yours to read? Though I struggled, I refused to suffer. And because I refused to suffer, I conquered.
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