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By Cayla Dengate

You may have seen him on stage playing with The Chronics but Greg Townley says his weekly jam session is with a group of people who have cerebral palsy.

Through music therapy business Mr Tambourine Man, Mr Townley said he had written more than 20 songs with the group.

“We meet for about two hours a session and over the space of about four sessions we write and record a song,” he said.

“It always starts with brainstorming a topic.

“I put everything they see up on the whiteboard and I push for everyone to talk about their thoughts and feelings — really go deep.

“Then I come up with a melody on guitar or piano and we fit those words we brainstormed into a song.”

Songs have been about family, friends and more.

“We’re working on one about computers at the moment which is a bit of a dance track,” he said.

He said the songs were recorded and produced using Garage Band then burned onto a CD.

“To have something tangible to take home and be able to play to friends and family is pretty special,” he said.

Mr Townley also works with aged care facilities and charities caring for people with all levels of ability.

“Music therapy is something I suppose I can do innately,” he said.

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By My Fox Austin

Last week we told you about a special needs boy whose tricycle was stolen. After hearing what happened a company contacted FOX 7 to make him a new one.

Seven-year-old Charlie had no idea what was outside waiting for him on Sunday.

“My bike,” Charlie said.

Just one look at his expression and you can tell he couldn’t be happier. A new tricycle to replace Charlie’s old one.

“It’s great,” Charlie said.

Last week, the Morningstar family moved to Austin. They had been here less than a day when they noticed the tricycle was missing from outside of their apartment. Charlie was heartbroken.

“I really liked it because me and my mom built it together,” Charlie said.

The news of the stolen tricycle spread online, compelling a FOX 7 viewer to reach out to a company called Urban Trike.

“I had just recently purchased my Urban Trike and I knew how inspirational it was and life changing it was for me so I just wanted to do something for somebody else that could impact them as much,” Larry Hackney said.

Urban Trike loved the idea. They got in touch with the Morningstar family and customized a tricycle that would cater to Charlie’s special needs.

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By Sherea Harris


BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

A young boy had the chance to work his dream job thanks to and a local restaurant.

Tuesday was a busy afternoon for cooks at FoodBar in Vestavia Hills. But all of the hustle and bustle that goes on back in kitchen is what one very special little boy is fascinated with.

“I want to be a chef because I want to cook stuff,” said James Pollard.

Pollard, 6, lives with cerebral palsy and he’s getting a chance to live out his dream of being a chef.

He helped Chef George McMillan with prep work and also got to operate a blender.

“We’re all just blown away by his enthusiasm in the kitchen. He loved getting to see all the different facets. The walk in the cooler, to the guy cutting fish, to fresh produce coming in the back door,” said McMillan.

“It’s nice to see, to just get to see him be a kid,” said Pollard’s mother, Mary Ellen Pollard.

Mary Ellen Pollard said her son was diagnosed at 15-months-old with a type of cerebral palsy called Spastic Diaplegic. It affects the lower half of his body and he’s going through a lot of physical therapy to re-learn how to move.

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