We are UB40 featuring Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue, all of us founding members of the original UB40. Ali and Mickey left the band in 2008 and were reunited with Astro when he left too in 2013.
The original line-up of UB40 with Ali, Astro and Mickey enjoyed huge success over a period of 30 years from 1979 until 2008, including number 1 album???s and multiple top 10 gold and platinum selling albums and Grammy nominations, 4 number ones worldwide. Total of 70 million plus sales.
We would not want anyone to confuse Ali, Astro and Mickey???s band with the band that carried on using the name UB40 after 2008 made up of other founding members and new members they tried to replace us with in their attempt to trade off the reflected glory of the success of the original line-up.
Only with Ali Campbell, the legendary voice of UB40, reunited with Astro and Mickey can audiences get to experience the closest thing to the sound of the hugely successful original line-up of UB40 as all the hits are played. They can also get to hear these three founding members??? and UK reggae pioneers??? latest take on the genre.
When vocalist Astro and keyboard player Mickey Virtue rejoined forces with Ali Campbell, the spirit of their old band UB40 was never going to be far from the surface. All three were founding members of the iconic Birmingham reggae troupe who topped the UK singles chart on three occasions and sold 70 million records as they took their smooth yet rootsy musical blend to all corners of the globe.
Andy Frasco, the Los Angeles, CA native singer / songwriter / band maestro / entrepreneur / party starter / everyday hustler, and his band of gypsies ???The U.N.??? have been cited frequently as ???Party Blues,??? but the band???s musical inspirations and influences run much deeper, incorporating elements of Soul, Funk, and Rock as well as tones of Roots, and Americana, creating a much more diverse sound and style that is distinctly Andy Frasco & the U.N.
Frasco???s shows have been described as infectious, manic, frenzied and feel good. His performances are recognized as orchestrated chaos, inciting infectious dancing, and a good ole fashion freak out.
Touring independently across the U.S. and Europe since he was 18 years old, Frasco first got his taste of the music industry managing and promoting bands when he was 16 years old -booking bands like Hello Goodbye, and working with labels such as Drive Thru and Atlantic Records, as well as venues like The Key Club in Hollywood, CA.
Since his start, Frasco has embodied a DIY attitude and work ethic, making the road his home; averaging 200+ dates a year, trekking over 200,000 thousand miles spanning the country dozens of times over, blowing minds and building a loyal following everywhere he goes.
To date, Andy has shared the stage and performed with artists such as Leon Russell, Galactic, Jackie Greene, Gary Clark Jr, Jakob Dylan, Butch Walker, Deer Tick, John Mayer, Karl Denson???s Tiny Universe, Fishbone, Lukas Nelson, JJ Grey & Mofro, Lettuce and more.
BL3ND is a DJ from the United States, born in Los Angeles, California.
He started handing out mix-tapes to local clubs and promoters in 2009 but had a difficult time grabbing anyone???s attention. Seeking another means of sharing his passion with the world, he began creating live videos of himself dancing and spinning energy filled, hard hitting beats in his now signature mask. Posting on YouTube, his videos quickly went viral and in less than a few years, he has become an unprecedented story of do-it-yourself success.
He reached number 78 in DJ Mag's Top 100 list from 2014.
Our five piece rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1999 and after playing the Sunset Strip clubs and self producing EPs for a couple of years, we made our self titled major label debut and hit the road. We travelled all over the U.S., the U.K. and even made it as far as Japan. We toured with Weezer, The Strokes, Sloan, The Sounds, The Donnas, Travis, Keane and many others.
After our first record reached nearly gold status and yielded two successful singles, we retreated to L.A. where, after many hold ups, we recorded "Calling the World" over three weeks time. We then toured the world for another year and half with an eclectic bunch of artists including Ben Lee and The Polyphonic Spree. Our first single off the record climbed to number 1 in Germany and subsequently took us all over Europe multiple times.
2009 found us back in L.A. recording and experimenting in our new home studios while transitioning into a new label situation. We formed our own record label "California Dreamin'" and released our "Wild One" e.p. at the end of 2009 and our 3rd full length release "Eureka!" in June of 2010. Since then, we've enjoyed touring with The Crash Kings, The Young Veins, Black Gold, Hanson, and Eisley. We are currently enjoying our return to the independent spirit upon which we were founded and are looking back at a career which now spans over a decade. Thank you to all of our friends and fans who have taken the trip with us...we play for you.
Somewhere within the confines of Dunedin???s 660 Castle Street, five Otago University students began plotting in the summer of 2008. Marlon Gerbes, Matiu Walters, Eli Paewai, Chris Mac and Ji Fraser picked up instruments, turned on amps, closed the door to keep the noise in, and SIX60 came to life. In the six years since, the band traversed tens of thousands of miles throughout Australasia, Europe and The USA, and transcended the loftiest of expectations placed upon them by their most diehard fans.
6 New Zealand Music Awards, quadruple platinum album sales for their self-titled debut SIX60, sold out nationwide tours, summer festival headline performances, collaborations with the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra and feverish local and international popularity that few New Zealand bands could ever lay claim to.
Careening between roots, soul, pop and dubstep; combining r & b with drum and bass; the band???s unorthodox marrying and mish-mashery between unlikely genres gained them favour throughout New Zealand in record time. Their popularity exploding from Dunedin outwards into the rest of the country, thanks to an enigmatic live show, infectious radio singles and a progressive onslaught of guerrilla promotion via social media.
And now, three years and four months on, much to the delight of SIX60 fans spanning both hemispheres, their second album is ready, due for release in February 2015. The first single- named Special - arrives joyous and summery, landing gleefully in the sweet spot between pop, soul and R & B while channeling hints of Pharrell Williams-esque melodies and jinky guitar sound the band are known for.
Special ??? and the rest of the new album - was recorded between the band???s own M Studio and Roundhead Studios in September 2014, engineered by Neil Baldock, mixed by Grammy award winner Tony Maserati in LA, then mastered by Dave Kutch in NYC. When it came time to create this second record, two false starts were made before the third foray into writing and recording produced almost 100 songs, which was then whittled down to the final 16. Their return to New Zealand in September 2014 to finalise recording allowed the band the time at home that they had been badly craving.
???It???s taken all this time because we have been on the road so much, but it also it took us a long time to discover what kind of band we really wanted to be and in turn, how we wanted to sound,??? says Matiu Walters ???Collaborating with other writers and producers really helped us expand; we were very lucky to have met Printz Board (American producer/songwriter and Grammy award winner) and also (renowned New Zealand Artist) Micheal Parekowhai who I spent a lot of time with. He really helped conceptualise and simplify things when creating the artwork.???
2013 saw the band signing to German label Four Music and a subsequent relocation to the sprawling artistic cornucopia of Berlin for much of the year. Prior to that, the perpetual juggernaut on the road since the release of SIX60 had led them to Glastonbury, a total of 9 performances at SXSW and showcases at renowned international conference festivals The Great Escape (UK) and CMJ (New York); and of course voyages home to New Zealand to sold out shows from Auckland to the deep south of Dunedin where it had all began back in 2008.
If the love that music fans around the planet have for SIX60 is anything to go by the new album they have been waiting for is truly going to be something pretty Special indeed.