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We Rise: The Disabled Rock Band Winning Hearts in New Documentary

Delta 7 are a unique rock band who have recently shot to fame after starring in their own fly-on-the wall documentary – a film that that has just won The Picturehouse Members Film Competition in London and is now being shown in cinemas across the UK.

Unlike most rock bands, all the members of Delta 7 have learning disabilities. Despite having ages ranging between 19 to 51, the band are united by their shared love of rock and roll and their sound has been compared favourably to legendary post-punk band The Fall. The guys write their own songs, and they aren’t afraid to shy away from making political statements in their music.

The film that changed everything was the brainchild of band associate Rosie Baldwin. Rosie pitched the idea to the The Picturehouse Members Film Competition, and her fly-on-the-wall documentary about the bandwas chosen as the winning entry from over 400 entries. The prize was a short film, produced by advertising agency McCann London and production company Craft London.

The movie was subsequently shown in cinemas all across England, showcasing their talent to millions of moviegoers. For a small band from Eastbourne the sudden fame could have been overwhelming, but the boys remain philosophical about it all. David, 51, explains: “There’s no such thing as ‘can’t’, otherwise you’ll get stuck and get nowhere.”

Delta 7 pride themselves on being an original band, with a unique sound that sets them apart from others on the scene. The way the band formed is unusual as well, with Delta 7 emerging as the end result of a five week course advertised by local arts project Culture Shift. The music course was originally aimed at people who were at risk of social isolation, and the rest – as they say – is history.

Despite increasing cutbacks to support within the disability sector the boys in Delta 7 continue to make music and perform for their fans – a testament to their resilience and optimism. “It’s a different way of standing up for what you believe in,” says Speedy, 22, vocalist and guitarist. “You can put it into a song.”

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