Spotlight Artist: UB40

Every weekday between 1 and 5pm we play tracks from our #spotlightartist. They’re an artist with a body of work which has stood the test of time. We’ll play the hits – but also some deep cuts. Listen ad-free through New Zealand via @tunein at

UB40 came together in 1978 in Birmingham, the eight band members beginning performing in 1979. From the beginning they played popular reggae songs, and got their break when the Pretenders’ Chrissie Hynde saw them playing at a pub and offered them the opportunity to play as her backing band. Astonishingly their first single reached no. 4 on the UK charts. We’ll play a few tracks this week from their first album Signing Off.

The band crossed over to US popularity in 1983 with an album of cover songs, Labour of Love. This included the Neil Diamond cover “Red Red Wine” which stayed in the charts for over 100 weeks.

We’ll enjoy tracks from throughout their career this week. The band are performing in New Zealand next year as part of their 40th anniversary tour, and they released a great album earlier this year called A Real Labour of Love.

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