Welcome to the Bear Club – it’s Luton’s best kept secret

Luton musician Paul Jolly

Luton musician Paul Jolly

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Luton’s recently opened Bear Club has been hailed as its best kept secret – and one of the top jazz venues in the country.

Luton musician and producer Paul Jolly – who’s appearing tomorrow night with the band Straight No Chaser – said: “They’ve already had some of the top national names in the jazz word playing there – people like drummer Dylan Howe and Scottish saxophonist Bobby Wellins.”

He added: “Some really good musicians are moving into the area from London because house prices are just so expensive.”

Paul, who has his own recording company and is secretary of Luton Community Arts Trust, said the music scene in the town was beginning to pick up after a bit of a downer through the 1980s: “Now The Hat Factory is putting on more stuff, as is the Museum and the George pub in Bute Street.”

The talented saxophonist, who’s appeared in movies with Sting and Tommy Lee Jones, has released 380 albums through his 33 Records label. The latest is by jazz singer Tina May.

> The Bear Club is open weekly from Thursday to Saturday. More information at www.the-bear.club