Didcot Beats was a small tester project which we piloted in partnership with Didcot Train Project during the summer of 2016.
We were introduced to Noora Rafiq and Alice Dore from Didcot Train project at the South Oxfordshire and Vale Youth Partnership Steering group meeting. Didcot TRAIN is a detached youth work service in Didcot that engage young people on the street who have little to do. Traditionally the organisation has used sport as a means of engaging, but they wanted to try a different tactic using music. After meeting with OCM’s Education and Outreach Officer Jordon Maynard-Daley both organisations decided to work on a pilot project which we could use to gauge if there was a need amongst the young people for this sort of activity and if there was we would collaborate on a funding bid to extend the project in Autumn 2016.
To deliver this project we recruited Nature Boy Dave Noble and Danny Wheeler to deliver the sessions . We have worked with Danny on numerous projects in the past but this was the first time our Education Programme had worked with Dave who comes from a music in therapy background.
Both artists planned to split the group in half working with each for about 45 mins each before swapping over. The aim was to create one piece of music with each group over the three sessions.
We delivered our first session in the evening on 11th July at the Methodist Church in Didcot and we managed to attract 6 participants, all girls to the session. Each group managed to create the basis of a track and over the following session we worked on refining the tracks until we were able to create a finished piece.
Our second session saw the addition of two more participants to the group though there were two from the first session that did not attend. Dave continued to work on the lyrics and backing music with the group who were creating a track called Many Regrets, drawing on the experience of attending a party in the woods. This was composed using instruments which the girls played and recorded.
Danny’s group worked on Logic and started creating a club track the next session would be dedicated to finishing it and creating a CD.
Impact on Participants
The young people that attended these sessions gained a lot from taking part. In the space of two evenings they were able to create two tracks by only spending 1hr and 30 mins with each of the artists.
There is definitely a lot of scope to develop a project further with TRAIN in Didcot, though we will have to deepen our outreach before we could commit to delivering a longer term project as attendance in our third session unfortunately dropped off.
To help us do this we will engage with the South Oxfordshire Youth Partnership and discuss what can be done.
Thank you for reading this project page.