It’s Oxjam for Oxfam

Jazz vocalist Claire Martin who is appearing at LeightonBuzzard's Oxjam festival
Jazz vocalist Claire Martin who is appearing at LeightonBuzzard's Oxjam festival
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Leighton Buzzard’s eighth annual Oxjam festival is a month-long feast of live music in aid of Oxfam.

Highlights include Claire Martin – regarded as the UK’s leading jazz vocalist – and legendary guitarist Jim Mullen.

Organiser Hollie Parkinson said: “As ever there’s something for everyone with jazz, folk, choral, pop and more on offer all over the town.”

It kicks off on Friday (March 4) with classic rock and pop from Time Warp at Trinity Church Hall in North Street.

They’ll be supported by all-girl group GB Stars.

If you prefer something smoother, head over to the Axe & Compass in Heath and Reach to see jazz quartet CG3 and singer/guitarist Ed Flach.

On Saturday (March 6) catch the Electric Blues Band at the Crown in North Street for a set of authentic electric blues.

For those who are more interested in taking part than listening, there are four events open to all-comers – Friday’s Fiddlers’ Session at Ollie Vees, Open Mic at the Wheatsheaf, a Saturday session at JT Guitars in Ryland Mews and an Open Mic Night at the Swan in Northall on Sunday evening.

Festival regular Fiona Harrison will bring her uniquely nostalgic talents to All Saints Coffee Shop on Tuesday (March 8), joining forces with Sinatra sound-alike Paul Marsden.

On Thursday (March 10), Greensand Jazz presents an unmissable event for jazz fans at the Five Bells in Stanbridge, featuring vocalist Claire Martin and guitarist Jim Mullen. They’ll be joined by Leighton’s own Arnie Somogyi on bass.

Tickets are on sale at Espresso Head, Hockliffe Street or online at www.greensandjazz.org.uk, with profits going to Oxfam.

Several gigs boast free entry, although donations to the charity are requested.

In all, the festival has raised more than £37,00 for Oxfam’s work combatting poverty.

> More at www.oxjamleightonbuzzard.org.uk