UB40 musician Brian Travers dies from cancer aged 62

Travers, a founding member of the reggae band, died surrounded by family at his Birmingham home on Sunday

Brian Travers of UB40 performs live on stage at O2 Apollo Manchester in Manchester, England, in December 2017. Photo: Getty Images
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UB40 saxophonist and songwriter Brian Travers has died from cancer at the age of 62, the band has announced.

The musician, who was a founding member of the reggae band, died at his home in Birmingham, UK, on Sunday, surrounded by his family.

"It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our comrade, brother, founding UB40 member and musical legend, Brian David Travers,” the band said.

"Brian passed away yesterday evening after a long and heroic battle with cancer. Our thoughts are with Brian's wife Lesley, his daughter Lisa and son Jamie.

"We are all devastated by this news and ask that you respect the family's need for privacy at this time."

Travers co-founded the eight-piece band in 1978 along with other musicians from various schools across Birmingham. The band got its name from a form used at the time for people to claim unemployment benefits.

UB40 are among the most successful reggae bands to come out of the UK, scoring more than 40 Top 40 singles and selling 100 million albums worldwide.

Among their most famous hits are Red Red Wine and (I Can't Help) Falling In Love With You.

In June this year, lead singer Duncan Campbell announced his retirement from music due to ill health, and was replaced by Matt Doyle.

Travers last performed with UB40 at a concert in December 2019, held at the Arena Birmingham.

Updated: August 23, 2021, 1:01 PM