Campbell retired from music after suffering a seizure last month
Campbell announced his retirement from music last week after suffering a seizure at home earlier this month.
The 63-year-old had a stroke in August last year and had spent the past 10 months recovering for the British reggae band’s forthcoming UK tour.
Reggae/ska band Kioko previously opened for UB40 at the Royal Albert Hall in London in May 2018, later joining them on their UK and European tours in 2019.
“I don’t quite know how to put into words just how incredibly honoured and grateful I feel to be given this opportunity,” Doyle said in a statement.
“I have loved UB40’s music for as long as I can remember and that love has only grown since getting to know them and watching them play live night after night on tour. They took Kioko under their wing and gave us the opportunity of a lifetime by inviting us out on tour, and although I’ll deeply miss playing shows with Kioko I know that they will carry on to do incredible things and that we will always remain the best of mates.”
Doyle said he wished “the absolute best” for Campbell and hoped he made a speedy recovery: “I’ve seen how much love he puts into his performance and he has written some incredible songs that I can’t wait to sing, as well as all the hits that have been such a big influence on my own music.”
Campbell’s older brother and UB40 guitarist and vocalist Robin added: “Matt has already demonstrated his ability and compatibility with the band on our latest album Bigga Baggariddim with the track ‘You Don’t Call Anymore’. He’s a talented young man with a voice and singing style that will prove to be a good fit and a great asset to the band.”
Doyle will make his debut with UB40 with their 2021 tour, beginning on 31 July at Lingfield Park Racecourse before embarking on their UK dates in November and December.
Campbell previously replaced his younger brother Ali as lead singer of the chart-topping group in 2008, after Ali quit over a disagreement about management.