CHICAGO (CBS) — Bears safety Chris Harris is known as a hard hitting safety, but he also loves to hit the perfect note.
He started playing the piano in the eighth grade – he started on trumpet earlier — and says his first loves were music and baseball.
In fact, he was so serious about music that he wasn’t on the field at his high school football games in Arkansas – he was in the stands, playing in the band.
“I actually had a band scholarship before a football scholarship, which is kind of funny,” Harris told CBS 2’s Megan Mawicke. “(I) wanted to pursue a career in music in high school and then started playing football my senior year and music took a back seat.”
Now he uses music as an escape from football. Classical and R&B are his favorites to play.
“It’s relaxing. If you’re stressed, you go in and just sit down and play,” he said.
So, which part of him is the true Chris Harris — the hard-hitting safety or the pianist?
“I have two sides to me,” he explains. “What everybody sees is the hard-hitting safety out there on the field, and off the field, I’m just the opposite, I’m very relaxed, I’m very chill.”
Harris gets some pointers from his wife, who’s an accomplished piano player and teacher. Music is a big part of their family. His son loves to play the drums and his daughter jumps in on the tambourine.
Music is “a huge part of our family,” Harris says.
Maybe they’ll all be a band some day?
“We’re going to be the new Partridge family — you all look out for us,” Harris joked.