Like Dave Edmunds, guitarist/pianist/vocalist Mickey Jupp was a champion of traditional rock & roll during the late '70s, a time when it had been all but discarded. Unlike Edmunds, Jupp wrote the majority of his own material, which updated '50s rock & roll with a tongue-in-cheek irony.
Few rock & roll or R&B guitarists of the '50s and '60s have a more consistently frantic body of work than the great Mickey Baker, though his name isn't nearly as well-known as Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, or Ike Turner. Baker did most of his work as a sideman, and his best-known recordings as a headliner found him playing second fiddle to Sylvia Robinson as half of Mickey & Sylvia (whose "Love Is Strange" remains a puzzling delight 50 years after it was recorded), but folks who know and love first-era rock & roll are aware of Baker's greatness, and this collection is a superb overview of his work, both as a bandleader and as a hired gun.
Only fans who follow UB40 closely will be aware that, as of 2013, there have been two different bands performing under the name UB40. The UB40 who perform with no caveats attached to their appellation are fronted by Duncan Campbell, the brother of Ali Campbell, who led the band through its peaks in the '80s and '90s. Ali acrimoniously left the group in 2008, soon followed by fellow vocalist Astro and keyboardist Mickey Virtue, leaving the remaining UB40 to be something of an upscale Reggae Sunsplash act, churning out reggae-fied covers of old pop and rock standards. All three former members reunited in 2014 for an album called Silhouette – confusingly billed to Ali Campbell the Legendary Voice of UB40 Reunited with Astro & Mickey – which helped establish these refugees as a distinct entity from the UB40 that kept performing under the household name, but the 2018 album A Real Labour of Love is where the trio make a stab for the crown they vacated.