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Coldplay Backs Blood Donor Push

2 February 2005

Coldplay Backs Blood Donor Push

UK super group Coldplay has given the New Zealand Blood Service a major shot in the arm by providing one of its songs free of charge for a television advertisement to attract new donors.

Don’t Panic, one of the hits from the band’s first album Parachutes, is the track behind a new awareness campaign devised by Publicis Mojo and on air from today thanks to TVNZ’s Community Support Foundation airtime.

New Zealand Blood Service Chief Executive Dr Graeme Benny said securing rights to international acts such as Coldplay was a rarity.

“Not many local campaigns have ever had backing music of this calibre because it can cost up to half a million dollars to secure the rights,” Dr Benny said. “We thought it was a real long shot to be able to use the song, let alone pay nothing to Coldplay for its use.

“We can’t thank Chris Martin and the Coldplay band members enough for their generosity. If this awareness campaign encourages just one more New Zealander to become a donor they can safely say they’ve contributed to saving lives.”

Dr Benny says the not-for-profit organisation needs more than 3,000 units of blood every week and the search for new blood donors is ongoing.

“The aim of this awareness campaign is not to attract a big influx of new donors in the short term, but to create wider awareness of the importance of blood donation and encourage people to become regular donors.

“With every donation saving up to three lives, the Blood Service is always on the lookout for new donors.”

Approximately 80% of all New Zealanders will need blood or a blood product during their lifetime, but less than 5% of Kiwis currently donate blood.

It was those sort of statistics that were communicated to the Coldplay members, who are renowned for spurning commercial approaches to use their music.

American broadcasting giant ABC used Yellow as its promo track in 2000 and that same song has been used by the Australian Cancer Society for Daffodil Day. But, despite numerous requests, no Coldplay track has ever been used in an advertisement and so far they haven't allowed any of their songs to be used on film soundtracks.

“It's been all on our own terms,” says drummer Will Champion on the band’s official website at www.coldplay.com. “We have 100 per cent control over any aspect of whatever we do, and that's really important to who we are and the music we make. We take control of the recording, the videos, the artwork. We're not a band that can be pushed around, although we do have some amazing advisors.”
The NZBS is part of the public health service and is a national non-profit organisation that collects blood from volunteer donors for the treatment of patients across the country – from car accident victims and newborn babies, to burn victims and people with illnesses.

All blood types are currently needed from donors aged between 16-60, weighing over 50kg, who have had no body piercing or tattoos in the past six months and did not live in the UK between 1980-1996 for longer than six months.

Just 470mls of blood is taken per donation. The body replaces the fluid in 24-48 hours, and people are able to donate every three months.

Appointments to become a donor can be made by calling 0800 GIVE BLOOD, by calling your local Blood Centre or by sending your details using the website at www.nzblood.co.nz.

*****************

Don’t Panic by Coldplay from their debut album Parachutes:

Oh, sinking like stones
All that we fall for
All those places we've grown
All of us are done for

[chorus:]
We live in a beautiful world
Yeah we do, yeah we do
We live in a beautiful world

Oh, sinking like stones
All the we fall for
Homes, places we've grown
All of us are done for (done for)

[chorus x2]

Oh, all that I know
There's nothing here to run from
'Cos yeah, everybody here's got somebody to lean on

ENDS

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