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About UB40

Though Birmingham, England has become synonymous with legendary heavy-metal bands Black Sabbath and Judas Priest, the city is gravely under-credited for birthing influential reggae groups such as Musical Youth, Steel Pulse, and UB40. The latter was formed during the economic crisis of the late ‘70s, leading brothers Ali and Robin Campbell and a rapidly growing roster of musicians to adopt the cheeky acronym standing for Unemployment Benefit, Form 40. These work troubles were resolved after American singer Chrissie Hynde enlisted the reggae ensemble to support her band, Pretenders, on the road. UB40 eventually found its stride with cheerful, breezy covers of pop standards, including enormously successful re-imaginings of Neil Diamond's “Red Red Wine” and Elvis Presley's “Can't Help Falling In Love.” The band's popularity continued to soar over the following decades with multiple appearances on film and a historic performance at Live Earth in 2007. And while Ali Campbell left the band the following year, UB40 has remained a beacon of Birmingham's cultural melting pot, boasting Welsh, Jamaican, Scottish, and Yemeni members.

Birmingham, England
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