Playing Around 

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Mistura Bela
The Coffee Warehouse, 526 S. Tejon St.
Wednesdays, 7 p.m.; Saturday, May 7, 8 p.m.
Free; call 227-8639

It's Wednesday night -- smack dab between weekends -- in the city that never wakes up until Thursday, and you wonder, "Where do all the jazz cats go when they are not listening to radio jazz programs?"

OK, maybe this hasn't crossed your mind, but get yourself down to The Coffee Warehouse anyway to meet some of the refined few drinking in the smooth cocktails of local trio Mistura Bela. Singer and guitarist Barbara Ernst sings Brazilian sambas, bossa novas and Latin ballads in sensually mellow Portuguese and Spanish. Mark Rose, featured on flutes and soprano sax, and nationally recognized bassist Ken Walker (filling in for regular John Flores) accompany Ernst. Together Mistura Bela evokes an understated sultriness that envelops without overpowering, giving the midweek lull a satisfying groove.

-- Wayne Young


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