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UB40 Artist Bio and Lyrics

The ‘80s dub and reggae band UB40 was founded in Birmingham, England in the late 1970s. They took their name from a form that was issued by the Department of Health and Social Security in the United Kingdom for claiming unemployment benefits.

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The dream of starting a band motivated the young friends to put UB40 together and start advertising – before any of them had learned how to play their instruments. When Ali Campbell received several thousand pounds in compensation money after a bar fight on his 17th birthday, the band was able to purchase equipment and start writing songs. Their first gig took place in the year 1979 at a friend’s birthday party.

The big break for UB40 came when Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders caught one of their early gigs and offered them a slot opening up for her band. The band’s first single, “King,” soon brought them success on the United Kingdom’s singles chart. The band’s debut album, Signing Off, made it to Number Two on the charts.

The albums of UB40 include Signing Off, Present Arms, Present Arms in Dub, UB44, Labour of Love, Who You Fighting For?, Home Grown, The Singles Album, UB40 Live, Geffery Morgan, Baggariddim, Little Baggariddim, The UB40 File, Rat in the Kitchen, UB40 Present the Fathers of Reggae, Labour of Love II, Promises and Lies, Guns in the Ghetto, The Very Best of UB40, Labour of Love Vol. 1, 2, and 3, Cover Up, UB40 Present the Dancehall Album, and Labour of Love III.

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