UB40 brings ‘heaven’ to Carnivore tonight

UB40’s Terence Wilson, alias Astro, and Ali Campbell at Ole Sereni Hotel in Nairobi yesterday. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

Legendary reggae band UB40 will perform tonight at the Carnivore grounds in Nairobi.

The band known for hits such as Red Red Wine was formed in 1978 by two brothers Ali and Robin Campbell before differences over managerial issues emerged between them, leading to a split in 2008.

Lead singer Ali split from the band but still clung to the name and recruited Mickey Virtue and co-front man, Terence Wilson, alias Astro.

On Thursday, Ali and Astro, presenting themselves as UB40, arrived in Kenya and yesterday held a press conference and promised their fans “heaven.”

The arrival was preceded by denouncement by another group which had said on social media that Ali and Astro were not members of the UK reggae band. They said the band to Nairobi was not a part of them.

During the presser, the duo said they were ready to perform as many songs as their fans would demand as they mark their 40 years of being in the entertainment industry.

“You can’t stop reggae. We have 30 albums and it is difficult to say which one of those are our favourites. We shall perform what our fans want and they will all have good time,” said Ali.

He said they were glad to be in a country of diverse cultures, adding that Kenya was the place to be.

“We may have different traditions, cultures and languages among others but we are all the same. We should treasure that,” Ali said.

The performance has been organised by the Academy of Dance and Art, with sponsors including Vivo Energy and Ole Sereni Hotel.

Speaking during the presser, Sports, Culture and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed welcomed the band, saying their presence and performance in the country was an inspiration to local artistes and youth with ambitions in the entertainment industry.