UB40 Toaster Astro Dead at 64

    Astro, longtime singer, multi-instrumentalist, and toaster of British reggae band UB40, has died after a short illness. “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 on the group’s social media 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.” He was 64.

    Astro, whose real name was Terence Wilson, joined UB40 in 1979, a few months after the group’s formation in Birmingham, England. He played with the original lineup until 2013, when he joined an offshoot UB40 featuring Ali Campbell and Mickey Virtue. UB40 sold over 70 million records worldwide, with the band’s biggest single, 1983’s ‘Red Red Wine’, reaching No. 1 in both the UK and US, as did their version of ‘Can‘t Help Falling In Love’. Three years later, they scored their third No. 1 single in the UK with their rendition of ‘I Got You Babe’ featuring the Pretenders’ Chrissie Hynde.

    Astro’s death comes only three months after fellow UB40 co-founder, saxophonist and songwriter Brian Travers, died of cancer aged 62.

    Konstantinos Pappis
    Konstantinos Pappis
    Konstantinos Pappis is a writer, journalist, and music editor at Our Culture. His work has also appeared in Pitchfork, GIGsoup, and other publications. He currently lives in Athens, Greece.

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