The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) has launched the Whale Remix Project, an online contest where users can create their own song using the sounds of the humpback whale. A celebrity panel will judge the top ten songs selected by IFAW. The winner will receive a 60 GB video iPod and have their song featured in upcoming public service announcements about illegal commercial whaling. Members of the judging panel include Johanna Fateman of Le Tigre; Tom Dumont of No Doubt; Lisa Kekuala of The Bellrays; electronic music composer and producer BT; composer and producer Wayne Kramer (founding member of MC5); hip-hop artist and producer Head-Roc; Sid Barcelona of Thunderball; composer and producer Chris Vrenna (former member of Nine Inch Nails and touring drummer for Marilyn Manson); and Mike Ski of the A.K.A.s.
The contest ends June 11, 2006 at 11:59 p.m. PDT. Winners will be announced July 3, 2006. In addition to the 60 GB video iPod for the top winner, runners-up could win an iPod Nano or iPod Shuffle.
The Whale Remix Project houses recordings of humpback whales in a Flash tool that allows users to mix and record their own songs using a simple keyboard interface. DJ's (both amateur and pro) are invited to mash their own remixes offline by downloading the humpback whale songs used in the Flash player. Humpback whales make long, uninterrupted streams of sound that with rhythmic patterns that many people consider to be beautiful songs.
Commercial whaling has been banned internationally since 1986, and the hunting of humpback whales has been banned for more than four decades. Since the ban on whaling took effect, Japan has killed more than 25,000 whales in the name of scientific research, selling the whale meat to restaurants and markets. Japan has announced plans to expand its whaling to include threatened humpback whales next year.
Click here for more information about the contest.