UB40 invades Mbombela stadium

2011-12-13 18:39
Eric Mashaba
Mbombela - Mpumalanga's capital city is expected to rock on Saturday when former members of the band UB40 perform at the Mbombela stadium.

The group will be led by founding lead singer Ali Campbell, who was instrumental in promoting the social revolutionary band in the late 1970s.

"Ali is currently touring with his new band and continues to thrill audiences worldwide, performing the classic hits he is so well known for, like Red Red Wine and Kingston Town, together with some new songs from his latest solo albums," said the concert director Mash Malibe on Monday.

Malibe said although Campbell once quit the group, he was UB40's primary songwriter and owner of the copyright.

"The group was later disbanded but it was recently re-named Ali Campbell UB40 in honour of Campbell," she said, adding that Campbell was "excited" about coming to perform in South Africa this festive season.

"Campbell will perform the 'good old' UB40 songs everyone loves. This is his only performance in South Africa as part of the 2011 world tour that also includes concerts in Australia, Europe and the United Kingdom. The concert line-up is cross-cultural and cross-gender in support of the day of reconciliation," said Malibe.

Local performers

Malibe said to keep South African music lovers on their toes, the concert will kick-off on Friday with the official pre-party at Déjà vu Lounge in Mbombela.

She said the pre-party would feature Metro FM's celebrity DJ T-bo Touch, who will be supported by local disk jockeys as well as those from Maputo and Swaziland.

She said the pre-party would start at 19:00 until late while the main concert will begin at 12:00 on Saturday.

Other performers will include DJ Tira and his kwaito outfit Big Nuz, Dave van Vuuren (Idols winner 2011), Jamali, Goldfish, Magic Soul, Natalie R, Tira, DJ Jaydon D and No Ones Arc.

The programme director will be Jacaranda FM’s Miguel Proença and FHM Top 100 Hottest Women in SA Sashi Naidoo.

Centre of attraction

Ticket sales are open at Computicket and range from R200 to R350, depending on the distance from the stage. The 2000 golden circle tickets as well as the VIP tickets are selling for R500 each.

"Five park-and-ride facilities will be located across town to transport ticket-holders safely and efficiently to and from the stadium," said Malibe. "The concert is expected to attract more than 30 000 fans, which is seen as a major benefit in terms of tourism for the region."

The Mbombela stadium has become a centre of attraction in Mpumalanga.

The Metro FM annual music awards have been hosted in the province twice while major soccer fixtures have been held at the stadium, including the Nedbank Cup Final that saw Premier Soccer League defending champions Orlando Pirates seal their historic treble in the 2010/2011 season.