A Remixing Project Is Trying to Make Organ Donation Seem Less Scary

Dutch Uncles' Robin Richards is coordinating a project, where bands from Everything Everything to Wild Beasts donate song stems to raise awareness.
Lauren O'Neill
London, GB
Everything Everything image via PR

Here's something a little heartwarming, to set your day straight. Organ donation is important. Giving someone a second chance after we've tapped out is probably one of the kindest and most human things we can do (squeamishness is silly you're literally gonna be dead, dude, let someone else have a go). And so it's something worth being signed up for. Currently, the UK system invites people to opt in to organ donation, which means it's pretty undersubscribed: right now, 86,000 people are waiting for an organ transplant, and unfortunately about 16 of those die daily, as of 2014, because they've not got what they needed in time. That lack of available organs sucks, objectively.


That's where some British musicians come in. Robin Richards of art-pop band Dutch Uncles has set trying to raise awareness of how easy it is to put yourself on the organ donation register, with a new initiative. He's organised Speed Donating Singles, as part of the larger Speed Donating project, which invited musicians including Everything Everything, Wild Beasts and British Sea Power to add stems from their music (like basslines, drum fills, vocals) to a central database. And from that database, fans, DJs, and everyone in between can make their own tracks with the stems. The rationale behind it is simple, Richards says: "The stems database represents the organ donor register. The ease with which is it to upload a stem to help somebody make a track is representative of how simple it is to sign up to the organ donation register and potentially save a life."

You can't say fairer than that, really. The website includes its own mixing board, and the stems are also free to download. Further good news is that the project will continue throughout the year, with second and third waves of artists contributing samples and stems as time goes on. Go forth and remix, for an extremely good cause. But, you know, don't forget the central bit: to take the steps towards becoming an organ donor.

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