Jarrett Payton eyes career as rapper

Walter Payton's son, Jarrett, has traded high-stepping for hip-hop.

Recently released from his Canadian Football League contract with the Toronto Argonauts, Payton says he's huddled with a microphone hoping to launch a rap career from the far west suburbs.

One of the songs on his underground mix tape "The Preseason" is a melodic tribute to his Hall of Fame pops.

"I have a passion for music. A buddy of mine sent me the instrumental. . . . I said, you know what, I was going to go from the heart and whatever comes from my heart comes out of my mouth that's what I'm going to say," Payton said. "So, it's a touching song. Because it truly is how I feel."

On "Loves," Payton raps: "Forever/ I will be remembered/ As the son of a great ... As a little kid/ Had to run up the hill/ Like my father did/ That's why he just started him/ and now I just gotta be just a part of him."

Payton is still polishing his songs and says he's looking for local producers to help shape a forthcoming album, which he plans to release on his independent music label, Citywide.

As his family readies for "Payton Week" -- a tribute marking the 10th anniversary of Walter's death in November -- Jarrett says he's hoping a statue of his father will find a permanent home somewhere near Soldier Field.

"When you think of the Bulls ,you think of Michael Jordan. When you think of the Bears, you think of my dad," Payton said.

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