Beat It Music

Liz Leach from Beat It Music explains more about their work.

What is the background to your organisation?
The idea for Beat It Music came about after The Outsiders showed how a lot of the long held beliefs surrounding disability can be challenged if people are given the opportunity to develop and share their skills and talents. The Outsiders are a band which has been going since January 2009, The band members have decided to ditch the label they have been given ‘adults with Learning Disabilities’ and see themselves as musicians. The members of the band utilise their personal budget to cover the cost of running their own band.

What services do you provide?
We provide music sessions based on what people want to achieve. The sessions are shaped around the people who attend and therefore we can offer a great deal of variety and flexibility.The areas we cover include percussion, drumming, guitar, vocals, performance, bass guitar, composition, recording, DJ-ing and music history and appreciation.

Who is on the team? (staff and volunteers)
Sharon Horsfall – Project Management, Mentor and Coach
Liz Leach – Management
Chris Reed – Session Musician
Lanre Philips – Session Musician
Arinze Philips – Session Musician
Karlos Thompson – Session Musician

What is the best thing about your job?
I love the variety and how we can work in such a way that people involved in the sessions are taking the lead. At each performance I can see how people have grown in confidence and how this project has made a difference to them.

What is the most challenging thing about your job?
The most challenging part of the job has been getting Beat It Music recognised as a worthwhile use of money on a persons support plan / budget. This has caused frustrations as we believe that through personalisation people should have full choice and control.

If you had a super-power what would it be and why?
My super-power would be to open up people’s hearts and minds and to strip away the years of culture that have caused people to become jaded and full of limiting beliefs about what is possible. Anything is possible if people believe it to be.

If you could give someone you know an award, who would it be and why would they deserve it?
There has been so many people that have inspired that it is so difficult to name one, although if a posthumous one was possible it would be for Antony Burgess for his tenacity, fun loving nature and his ability to show others that anything is possible.


April 2014