Formed in 1978, UB40 is the UK’s most successful reggae group and has earned more than 50 charting singles with distinctive covers and original songs.
∙ The Birmingham band—who took the name UB40 from the British “Unemployment Benefit 40” form—scored a No. 4 UK hit with their first single, “King,” in 1979.
∙ Signing Off, their UK Platinum-certified debut LP, climbed to No. 2 on the UK Albums chart in 1980.
∙ UB40 broke through in the US with their 1985 cover of Sonny & Cher’s “I Got You Babe,” a duet with Pretenders frontwoman Chrissie Hynde that reached No. 28 on Billboard’s Hot 100.
∙ Their version of Neil Diamond’s “Red Red Wine” topped the charts in several countries when it was released in 1983, and it hit No. 1 in the US five years later.
∙ “Swing Low,” performed with United Colours of Sound, was the official theme for the 2003 Rugby World Cup.
∙ They scored their second US No. 1 in 1993 with their version of “(I Can’t Help) Falling in Love with You,” which also topped the charts in five other countries, including the UK and Canada.
∙ In 2018, the group celebrated their 40th anniversary with a concert at Royal Albert Hall in London.