"The human factor is the most insidious in destroying things," says Susan Gillis. But she's not talking about heavy issues, like war and deforestation; she's talking about collectibles and people's tendency to ruin them. When folks try to preserve memorabilia -- photographs, postcards, newspaper clippings, and ephemera placed in scrapbooks -- they often unwittingly damage the pieces, says Gillis, a collections specialist at the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society. She's responsible for preserving old stuff and will share her secrets during "Maintaining and Preserving Your Scrapbooks and Archives" today at Stranahan House (SE Sixth Avenue and Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale). "Taping things down, gluing them, laminating -- those are not very good techniques for preservation," Gillis cautions. The acid in tape and glue can deteriorate paper, and she will demonstrate alternative techniques at the 6 p.m. seminar. Admission costs $10 to $15. Call 954-524-4736.
Even today's electronically generated, digitally produced music relies on the primal sounds of the world's first musical instrument, the drum. The drum provides the pulsating beats that drive electronica dance music, and the spare soundscapes of the drum 'n' bass subgenre hark back to hypnotic tribal sounds. Considering the prevalence of drum circles and the success of Broadway shows like Stomp, it's no surprise that Kodo, the top taiko drum ensemble from Japan, is enjoying huge success. The 19 drummers have appeared on The Late Show With David Letterman, and the group's latest album, Sai-so, is a collection of Kodo songs remixed by top DJs, many of whom have been sampling the group's beats for years. Kodo brings out the big drums, most notably the 800-pound o-daiko carved from the trunk of a tree, during its performance tonight at the Kravis Center For the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach. Tickets prices range from $25 to $40. Call 561-833-8300.