- The Legendary Voice of UB40 -
Flying High - Album Release June 29th 2009
Out From Under - Single Release June 29th 2009
Following the worldwide success of 2007s Running Free, June sees the release of Ali Campbells much anticipated third solo album Flying High, his first to be recorded since splitting from UB40. Ali has one of the UKs most distinctive and recognisable voices and as lead singer with the world-renowned group UB40, he has sold over 70 million records worldwide, toured across the globe, notched up four number No. 1 world-wide singles, over forty Top 40 UK singles, released 24 studio albums and received an Ivor Novello Award for International Achievement.
Recorded in Londons legendary Sarm Studios Flying High is an exquisitely arranged and produced infectious reggae-pop record, made up of a mixture of original material and interesting covers, thoroughly exploring all genres of reggae music, with a release date that makes it a potential soundtrack to the summer.
An Ali Campbell record wouldnt be an Ali Campbell record without exciting collaborations, superbly written original material and some well chosen, transformed covers and Flying High wont disappoint. Ali restructures and shapes old pop classics with his inventive, artistic vision that only he could convincingly execute and the record includes appearances from an exciting cast of international artists including Craig David, Sway, Jamaicas Lady Saw and Shaggy, Germanys Gentleman and South Africas Danny K & The Soweto Gospel Choir.
Speaking about recording the song Everways with Craig David, Ali recalled: It was a joy working with Craig, he is totally professional and has done a great job on the track. He is one of the UK's best R n B talents and a lovely guy. Similarly Craig enjoyed the experience saying It was great working with Ali, the man is a legend and a consummate professional. Everways captures everything that weve all come to love about his writing. I look forward to working with him again in the future.
A song written by Ali and Gentleman for the album is Its A Crime on which British rapper Sway collaborates: Sway is one of Britain's finest. His rap on the track is so good, I was blown away with his lyric and phrasing he is a big talent praised Ali. Coming from a family of UB40 fans Sway was thrilled to be working with Ali: "It was a great honour working with Ali, I'm a big fan of UB40 and so are my parents, my mum couldn't believe it. The fact that someone of that stature would even consider or acknowledge talent from a younger generation to be worthy of appearing on his album is amazing."
Soaring melodies and reggae rhythms glide and bounce along throughout the album with themes that include conspiracy theories, politics and love. The moving rendition of Britney Spears Out From Under highlights Campbells world class vocal ability - the first single to be taken from the new album, this beautiful ballad evokes strong emotions and lyrically may help to shed some light on his departure from UB40. Shes A Lady, a cover of Tom Jones Seventies smash, sees a pair-up with dancehall superstar Shaggy, whose raspy Jamaican rhymes entwine with Campbells huge soulful vocals so fluently and with such kick that youre left wondering why the two havent collaborated before.
True reggae lovers will be excited to learn that there is a cover of John Holts 1970 lost dub classic My Heart Is Gone. The haunting original track Nothing Ever Changes (Pierrot) sees the pairing of German reggae star Gentleman with Ali and leaves its mark on the listener with its thought provoking lyric, whilst Visions, another Campbell penned track, sees Danny K and the Soweto Gospel choir join Ali on what is an anthemic and uplifting look at South Africas future.
From his days in UB40 to his time pursuing his successful solo career, Ali has always stayed true to his love of reggae and its ongoing capacity for innovation, experimentation and pure enjoyment. Flying High is testament to his continuing desire to create and deliver innovative reggae and dub to the world in the shape of an album that, young or old, reggae enthusiast, or not, you definitely wont want to miss.
1.Nothing Ever Changes featuring Gentleman
2.Out From Under
3.Everways featuring Craig David
4.She's A Lady featuring Shaggy
5.That's Supposed To Hurt
6.What You Gonna Do Bout It featuring Lady Saw
7.Visions featuring Danny K & The Soweto Gospel Choir
8.My Heart Is Gone
9.Don't Shoot The Messenger
10.It's A Crime featuring Sway