UB40’s Astro Dies at 64 Following Short Illness

The founder member of the ‘Red Red Wine’ group has passed away at the age of 64 after a short battle with an illness, and his bandmates are quick to send condolences.

AceShowbizUB40 founding member Astro has died after a “short illness,” aged 64.

His “devastated” fellow band members announced the news on Saturday (06Nov21).

The singer, real name Terence Wilson, helped found the British pop-reggae band in 1978 and was still performing in a new version of UB40, with fellow frontman Ali Campbell and keyboardist Mickey Virtue, who had left the original group in 2008.

“We are absolutely devastated and completely heartbroken to have to tell you that our beloved Astro has today passed away after a very short illness,” a statement posted to the joint Twitter account for Ali Campbell and Astro reads.

“The world will never be the same without him.”

“We ask you to please respect his family’s privacy at this incredibly difficult time.”

Wilson’s cause of death has not been disclosed.

He left the “Red Red Wine” hitmakers in 2013 to team up with Campbell and Virtue.

Another UB40 band member, saxophonist Brian Travers, passed away in August (21) after “a long and heroic battle with cancer,” according to a statement on the UB40 Facebook page at the time.

The original members of the multi-racial group met in an unemployment line in Birmingham, England in 1978 and took their name from a U.K. unemployment benefit form.

In the wake of Astro’s passing, BBC Radio West Midlands played UB40 track “Sing Our Own Song” as a tribute. Presenter Natalie Graham called his death “very, very sad.”

“Astro really was a wonderful and an incredible human being and obviously the legacy of the music that we still get to enjoy from the likes of UB40 is something very, very special,” she said.

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