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UB40 goes bust

Published:Wednesday | October 19, 2011 | 12:00 AM
  • Famous reggae band loses battle against bankruptcy

Four members of the famous reggae band UB40 have been officially made bankrupt, the website revealed on Monday.

According to the website, while the Birmingham-based band sold more than 70 million records during their time together, a judge at Birmingham County Court declared Jimmy Brown, Terence Oswald, Brian Travers and Norman Hassan bankrupt.

The bankruptcy orders, the website claims, come after the band's record firm and Management Company DEP International failed and the band experienced an acrimonious argument over finances.

Early problems

The problems for the band, according to Debt Management Today, began much earlier, when District Judge Richard Musgrave allowed liquidators to chase debts and royalty payments on many of the band's hits, including their chart-topping single Red Red Wine. That happened in July.

The Telegraph goes on to quote the band's solicitor spokesperson Adrian Strickland before the members were adjudged to be bankrupt as saying, "If bankruptcy proceedings are issued following this hearing today, the band will vigorously oppose them."

However, the four band members have now had their details listed by the Insolvency Service and will be subject to the bankruptcy court order which will last for a year and means that tax officers can seize any property to pay off debts still outstanding.

Ali Campbell, who is the band's former frontman, famously split from UB40 in 2008, after financial arguments. He said, speaking back in July, "This is the very reason why I left the band. This was my biggest fear when I was with them, that bankruptcy was going to happen and no one can say I didn't warn them."

"In the 1980s we were living in five-star hotels and we got through a lot of money. Why weren't the other guys listening to me when I started to flag these money problems up?

"They decided to back the management and not me. I'm still very bitter about it. I was very proud of what I achieved with UB40. It was a band I started. I was with them for 28 years and we made 24 albums. But we were divided and ruled, and this is what happened in the end.

"UB40 have been asset-stripped by the people around them."