When guitarist Carlos Santana introduced the band Ozomatli before they opened for him last year, he told the crowd it was about to hear "the future" of music. Whether or not you agree with that assessment, Ozomatli is finding an audience. And deservedly so. The Los Angeles ten-piece's upbeat, infectious tunes are a meld of salsa, samba, hip-hop, and funk, with the singing in Spanish, the rapping in English. And, as anyone who's heard the band's self-titled debut album knows, dancing shoes are required. The conga line will form tonight at 9 p.m. at Respectable Street Cafe, 518 Clematis St., West Palm Beach. Tickets cost $7. Call 561-832-9999.
What the heck is a "Cornflake Girl" anyway? The song was written by Tori Amos, and she's probably the only one who knows. And her fans may be the only ones who care. But whatever others think of her piano-pounding alternative rock, which is both playful and emotional, Amos' music is heartfelt. Her songs come from deep within, laying bare her emotions both on stage and in the studio. Her debut album, Little Earthquakes (1991), includes the intense "Me and a Gun," an autobiographical song about rape. During the recording of Boys For Pele (1996), she was reeling from a divorce. This year's From the Choirgirl Hotel finds her singing about happier times; she remarried while recording it. The music, too, is more upbeat, with less piano, more guitar, even some funk and dance music. Amos performs at 8 p.m. tonight and tomorrow night at the Sunrise Musical Theatre, 5555 NW 95th Ave., Sunrise. Tickets cost $28.50. Call 954-523-3309 or 561-966-3309.
To some people exotic birds are a full-fledged hobby. They breed macaws, toucans, and peach-faced lovebirds in captivity, sometimes with the goal of creating the ultimate show-bird. To other folks, however, birds are pets, and, like cats and dogs, they're part of the family. "Unfortunately we get calls from people who have had a bird get loose, saying, 'I have to find him. This is my baby,'" says Stephen Card, former president of the Aviary and Cage Bird Society of South Florida. "To a lot of these bird owners, these are their kids." Both types of bird fanatics will undoubtedly show up for the society's Exotic Bird Show, which takes place between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. today at War Memorial Auditorium (800 NE Eighth St., Fort Lauderdale). While judges check out the looks, poise, and mannerisms of various birds, vendors will sell birds and bird-related stuff. Admission is $2, plus $3 to park. Call 954-435-7922.
In ancient Israel and in Jewish-exile communities in the Middle East and Europe, the Sabbath was announced on Friday afternoon with the blast of the shofar, a buglelike instrument made from the horn of a ram or a goat. The first blast was a call to close up shop; no work is allowed on the Sabbath. Another blast reminded worshipers to light their Sabbath candles. Orthodox Jewish groups use the shofar during Elul, the month of introspection leading up to the Jewish New Year on September 20. "It is a very primal sound that shakes you right to your marrow and is designed to awaken you spiritually," says Rabbi Allan Tuffs of Temple Beth El in Hollywood. The temple's members aren't Orthodox, but they've invited the Orthodox Chabad group to join them for Shalomfest, which takes place today in honor of the first day of Elul. Chabad members will show the public, regardless of religious background, how to make a shofar and how to blow it. The festivities, which are free, also include music, food, paint-ball activities, and spiritual workshops. Festival hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Temple Beth El, 1351 S. 14th Ave., Hollywood. Call 954-920-8225 for more information.
Radio-controlled model airplanes are toys -- expensive toys. So before you drop $500 on a plane of your own, the members of the Broward Radio Control Club would love to show you how to fly one. That's where club instructor Larry Sorge comes in. Every Monday from 1 to 3 p.m. at the airfield in Markham Park (16001 W. State Rd. 84, Sunrise), he lets visitors take a model plane for a "test flight." Feet planted firmly on the ground, a visitor grabs the controls and guns the throttle, sending the craft buzzing down the runway for takeoff. As soon as it's airborne, the model's wing flaps and tail rudder are used to control altitude and direction. But there's no need to worry about crashing. With his "buddy-box" system, which allows him to override the controls at any time, Sorge acts as a copilot. "There's absolutely no way they can crash the plane," he says. Park admission is $1; flying is free. Call 954-981-7120.