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Duncan Campbell
Duncan Campbell with UB40, Birmingham Symphony Hall, 2010
Background information
Birth name Duncan Campbell
Born (1958-04-03) 3 April 1958 (age 57)
Birmingham, West Midlands, England
Genres Reggae
Occupation(s) Musician, singer
Instruments Lead vocals
Years active 2008–present
Associated acts UB40

Duncan Campbell (born 3 April 1958, Birmingham, England) is a British musician and current lead singer of the British reggae band, UB40. He joined the band in 2008 after the departure of his brother Ali Campbell.[1]

Early life[edit]

Campbell was born in Birmingham on 3 April 1958. He is the brother of former UB40 lead singer Ali Campbell and current bandmate Robin Campbell and the son of folk singer Ian Campbell.[1]

Career before UB40[edit]

Campbell sang in a harmony group with his brothers as children and performed with their father on stage. He also recorded a reggae album in Jamaica for his brother Ali's record label, but it was never released. He was a professional spoon player. "I was the only professional spoon player in the country registered with the Musicians' Union – until they registered me as a vocalist," said Campbell. He also worked as a casino manager in Barbados, ran a fish and chip shop in Perth, Australia, and has worked as an actor.[1]

UB40 in 2010 with Duncan Campbell (2nd right)


On 24 January 2008, UB40 lead singer Ali Campbell announced that he was leaving the band after a dispute with the management; UB40 announced that they would carry on. On 30 April 2008 UB40 unveiled Duncan as their new lead singer.

Duncan was offered the position of the lead singer in 1978. However, he turned it down at the time, and said that he "wouldn't get the chance in another 30 years". Ali Campbell was "disappointed but didn't object" to him joining UB40. When asked why he did not join UB40 in 1978, he joked because they were "crap"[2] and that he "was too smart for them and he knew that they would get nowhere".[3] In 2014, Ali formed a rival version of UB40 with Astro and Mickey Virtue. He said of his brother's singing, "I sat back for five years and watched my brother Duncan murdering my songs. We're saving the legacy".[4]


  1. ^ a b c Youngs, Ian (2 May 2008). "Entertainment | UB40 singer replaced by brother". BBC News. Retrieved 27 January 2011. 
  2. ^ UB40 UBTV..Christmas Special..Anant Shah asks Duncan... on YouTube
  3. ^ UB40 play New Faces on BBC Midlands Today on YouTube
  4. ^ "Rival band remains true to its roots in reggae". Yorksire Post. 7 March 2014. Retrieved 9 March 2015. 

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duncan_Campbell_(UB40) — Please support Wikipedia.
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2930 news items

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Wed, 27 May 2015 03:52:30 -0700

UB40 will play a show at the O2 Academy with fellow reggae legends Steel Pulse. The show, which will be Duncan Campbell's UB40, will be on December 21 with both bands playing at O2 Academy Brixton the night before. UB40's Robin Campbell said: “I'm ...

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Wed, 29 Apr 2015 07:31:45 -0700

But this time it is the Birmingham reggae band featuring Robin and Duncan Campbell rather than the band with the same name featuring Ali Campbell and Astro. While Ali's version of the band wowed crowds at Barclaycard Arena recently, his brothers' band, ...

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Mon, 15 Dec 2014 07:41:29 -0800

The two factions of Birmingham band UB40 are bitterly divided – and so are their followers, who have taken to social media to fight it out. A war of words between fans was sparked after Ali Campbell re-ignited the row with his brothers Duncan and Robin ...

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Wed, 09 Apr 2014 01:06:29 -0700

Duncan Campbell's UB40 line-up. The brother of Birmingham reggae legend Ali Campbell has broken his silence to speak of his hurt over the rift that spawned two UB40s, a brooding legal battle and public family fall-out. Duncan Campbell, vocalist in a ...

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Wed, 01 Oct 2014 22:33:35 -0700

UB40 star Ali Campbell has written a song about his family rift – and what he called a “vicious six-year campaign against me”. The Birmingham reggae band was torn apart by a bitter wrangle which left two rival acts both using the famous name. Ali, 55 ...

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Tue, 14 Apr 2015 07:59:04 -0700

Ali Campbell's daughter Indica Campbell will be the support act for her father's UB40 band, which comes to Barclaycard Arena on Friday. She's very keen to do things off her own back without relying on her father's influence, but even she couldn't turn ...

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Fri, 17 Apr 2015 04:10:48 -0700

Billed as “a one day urban festival” the spring market promises to bring the best of Birmingham's food, drink and art scene to Digbeth tomorrow (April 18). The courtyard at The Bond in Fazeley Street is the food and drink hub and Saturday's bill features:.

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Fri, 17 Apr 2015 01:12:11 -0700

The book, published by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), aims to highlight the importance of preserving historic pub interiors. Editor Paul Ainsworth gives intricate descriptions of more than 200 pubs across the region, from ornate drinking palaces to ...

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