Thursday, May 08, 2014

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-UB40

Artist:UB40 f/Chrissie Hynde
Song:I Got You Babe
Album:Greatest Hits

The British reggae band UB40 had some success here in North America with hits like Red Red Wine and I Got You Babe. But they are a much bigger deal in England where they are still active today. UB40 is from Birmingham, England. The name UB40 is the form that is filled out in England to get unemployment benefits. Supposedly the various members were standing in an unemployment line when they decided to start a band in 1978. They were Ali Campbell on lead vocals, Robin Campbell on lead guitar, Mickey Virtue on keyboards, Brian Travers on sax, Terence "Astro" Wilson on trumpet, Norman Hassan on trombone, Earl Falconer on bass and Jimmy Brown on drums. While the band learned to play the instruments, they promoted themselves. They started playing local clubs in 1979 and got a big break when The Pretenders lead singer Chrissie Hynde saw one of their shows and took them on tour to open for them. They released a couple of albums on their own label and success on the British charts led to a deal with Virgin Records in England and A & M Records in the US. Their most successful album was Labour Of Love in 1983 featuring the number one hit Red Red Wine. UB40 continued to have success in England with this 1985 cover of the Sonny & Cher classic I Got You Babe. It topped the British charts and reached #28 on the Billboard Hot 100. They toured with The Pretenders anyway and having Chrissie Hynde guest on a song was only natural. They also had a big US hit in 1993 with a cover of (I Can't Help) Falling In Love With You from the film Silver. You can get all their hits on this comp. UB40 still tours in England. Ali Campbell and Mickey Virtue left in 2008. Campbell was briefly replaced by Maxi Priest and then by Ali's brother Duncan Campbell. There were financial problems with the band's company and they went bankrupt in 2011. UB40's latest CD Getting Over The Storm was released Sept. 2013 and they are currently on tour. Campbell and Virtue have returned so the original band is back together. Here's the video for I Got You Babe by UB40 featuring Chrissie Hynde.

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