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UB40 – 2 NEW singers: Duncan Campbell + Maxi Priest replace Ali Campbell + Twentyfourseven album


Reggae legends UB40 have announced two new vocalists who will be joining UB40 to collaborate on their forthcoming live concerts.

Duncan Campbell, brother of Robin and Ali Campbell, will join UB40 along with reggae stalwart Maxi Priest and collaborate on future live concerts and recorded albums.

UB40 Twentyfourseven review (5 song sampler)

The announcement brings to an end speculation as to who would replace former lead singer Ali Campbell. The announcement marks the first in a series of collaborations by the Birmingham band on what is set to be an exciting new chapter in the bands musical legacy.

Their musical collaborations over the past three decades have included such esteemed company as the late Robert Palmer, Chrissie Hynde, Afrika Bambaataa, 808 State, John Holt, Toots Hibbert, Gregory Isaacs and Beenie Man to name but a few.

UB40 have also announced details of their long awaited album ‘Twentyfourseven’ which will be released on Monday 16th June, 2008.

The album will be the bands final recording with former member and lead singer Ali Campbell.

Maxi Priest has collaborated with UB40 on two songs for the new album. He sings with UB40, his son Marvin Priest and DJ Beniton on the timeless Marley classic “I Shot The Sheriff” while also providing lead vocal on “Dance Until The Morning Light” (the double a-sided single) which features an infectious sample loop taken from Desmond Dekker and the Aces’ groundbreaking 1968 hit ‘Israelites’.

Maxi Priest known as “The King of Lovers Rock”, has established himself as one of the top British reggae singers of all time. He is one of only two UK reggae acts (the other being UB40) to score an American Billboard #1 with the song “Close to You”, which was released in 1990. The duet with Roberta Flack – “Set the Night to Music” – also reached the U.S Top Ten in 1991.

During Maxi’s lengthy career, he has had ten successful album releases and collaborated with such musicians and artists as Sly Dunbar, Robbie Shakespeare, Willie London, Beres Hammond, Shabba Ranks and Shaggy.

Duncan Campbell comes from a long standing and talented musical family, with both brothers Robin and Ali forming UB40 thirty years ago and their father, the renowned folk singer Ian Campbell whose band the Ian Campbell Group established themselves as a highly proficient live act. The band enjoyed chart triumph with their rendition of Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are A-Changin”, and also had success with their eight album releases.

On joining UB40, Duncan Campbell said; “I’ve long admired UB40 as a band and always had a great respect for what Robin and Ali have contributed to the band with Astro, Brian, Earl, Norman and Jimmy. UB40 are the biggest and most successful reggae band in the world, so I was absolutely delighted and a little stunned of course to be asked to come and work with the band. Of course it’s a hugely daunting task to undertake and make sure that I do justice to the songs that I perform on. I’m not about to start jumping into Ali’s shoes, he has made an incredible contribution to the band that nobody could ever replace with such a distinctive sound. I will of course be giving it my all and contributing my own style of vocals and performance, I hope I can do justice to their great songs and that the fans will like what they hear.”

Commenting on the collaborations band member Brian Travers said; “UB40 have had a long tradition of working and collaborating with various artists over the years, Maxi Priest came out on tour with us last year and after his performance of “I Shot The Sheriff” it was a natural and logical progression to work together. Maxi has worked on two tracks for the new album with us. Duncan who is the third Campbell brother, also has a gifted voice like his two brothers. He came into the studio one day and started singing over some tracks with Robin and we were just struck by his voice, the relationship just evolved very naturally.”

Maxi Priest said; “I am thrilled to be working with UB40 who I have always held in high regard as my brothers in reggae music. UB40 are one of the greatest bands in the world, to have lasted three decades is an amazing testament to their success. The collaboration with the band came about after I joined UB40 on their UK tour in December of last year, we got on stage and started jamming the Marley song “I Shot The Sheriff” and it went down so well that the guys asked me if I would come into the studio and record it for the album. One thing led to another and in the session we came out with not one but two tracks including, Dance Until The Morning Light, which includes a sample loop from Desmond Dekker and the Aces’ record ‘Israelites’. We had a great time doing the recording and I can’t wait to perform with them again”.

‘Twentyfourseven’ represents UB40 at their creative and musical best which takes strength and inspiration from their political and social conscience, arguably producing one of their finest albums to date of original material, cover versions and collaborations.

The new album features seventeen tracks with collaborations from reggae stalwart Maxi Priest, 1 Love & Rasa Don from Arrested Development, Marvin Priest and Hunterz.

The album was recorded in Birmingham, London, Sweden, New York and Fayetteville, Georgia, USA.

UB40 on

UB40 on

‘Twentyfourseven’ full track listing:

End Of War
Lost and Found
Dance Until The Morning Light
This Is How It Is
Rainbow Nation
Here We Go Again
I Shot The Sheriff
Oh America ! (Extended version)
Once Around
Slow Down
I’ll Be Back
Instant Radical Change Of Perception
It’s All In The Game
I’ll Be There
Middle Of The Night
Securing The Peace
The Road

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  1. 1 Comment(s)

  2. By teresa mcgrath and nat kim on Apr 17, 2009 | Reply

    we attended the ub40 concert 4-13-09 at the historic crsytal ballroom in portland, oregon, usa. we had seen them twice before, and this concert was equally great, and even surpassed previous gigs. the melodies, flow, rhythm, and each individual performances including duncan stepping in for ali were superb. additionally we bought the ‘08 cd, 24/7, and it is magnificent.

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