He's been called "New York's Latin Lunatic" and the "Latino Fireball of Comedy." His name is Seamus O'Shea. Just kidding -- his name is J.J. Ramirez. The up-and-comer has appeared on Comedy Central and Showtime at the Apollo, and the word on the street is that, after delivering his monologues about friends, family, and daily life, he closes the show by getting the audience involved in his own twisted -- and hilarious -- version of The Dating Game. Catch Ramirez at the New York Comedy Club (8221 Glades Rd., Boca Raton) tonight through Saturday. Tickets cost $12. Call 561-470-6887. (DF)
"Alex had a dream in which he heard a beautiful melody played as bossa nova and, upon waking up, realized it was 'No One Like You' by the '80s hard rock band The Scorpions. Could a tune that was originally performed with distorted guitars, electric bass, and a drum set the size of a spaceship translate to archtop guitar, upright bass and a drum kit small enough to carry on the New York Subway System?" So reads the bio of Alex Skolnick, former guitarist of the speed-metal band Testament and current jazz convert. Believe it or not, Skolnick's jazzy renditions of metal tunes -- from Kiss to Ozzy -- earned him raves from pencil-necked music geeks who reviewed his work for Downbeat, Jazziz, and Billboard. John Kelman, a writer for AllAboutJazz.com, wrote, "Judas Priest could never have conceived 'Electric Eye' as a lithe 7/4 romp, nor Scorpions their 'Blackout' as a swinging jazz waltz, but there you go." Before the Testament reunion tour (coming soon -- we're not kidding!), you can watch Skolnick shred at Alligator Alley (1321 E. Commercial Blvd., Oakland Park) at 9 tonight. Call 954-771-2220, or visit www.alligatoralleyflorida.com. (DF)
Tisto. Paul Van Dyk. Paul Oakenfold. Ferry Corsten. Rabbit in the Moon. Need we say more? We do? OK, then... Timo Maas. Josh Wink. The Crystal Method. Goldie. Carl Cox. Dieselboy. Perry Farrell. Feel free to stop us at any time. All of these hotshot international DJs -- plus about 100 more acts -- perform at tonight's Ultra Music Festival, the main event of the weeklong Winter Music Conference, the dance industry's mecca event. The festival just announced that Moby has signed on to headline Ultra. Check out his newest work live and in person -- although one former fan grumbled on Moby's website, "It sounds like a bad demo from a Pet Shop Boys tribute band. Is he taking the piss? Is it an artistic statement? Did Ashlee Simpson co-write it? Has the tofu gone to his head?" The dancing lasts from 11 a.m. 'til midnight at Bayfront Park and Amphitheater (301 Biscayne Blvd., Miami). Buy your $60 tickets at www.ultramusicfestival.us. (DF)
Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, atheists, and agnostics alike are welcome to revel in the warm, furry lap of the Bunny today -- not the Easter Bunny, mind you. You need not believe that, on this Sunday a couple of millennia ago, Jesus Christ, joined by two angels, rose up out of his tomb and flitted around to visit Mary Magdalene and the apostles before flying off to heaven. That might be kind of silly. You need only have faith that a giant rabbit hops around the globe in the middle of the night, passing out eggs and chocolate. A rabbit who passes out eggs -- yes, that makes perfect sense. The Bunny visits Flamingo Gardens and Wildlife Sanctuary (3750 S. Flamingo Rd., Davie) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. -- and he's bringing treats! Admission costs $12 for adults and $6 for children. Bring your camera. Call 954-473-2955, or visit www.flamingogardens.org. (DF)
Tired of Hollywood flicks that are short on plot and heavy on car-chase scenes and explosions? Of course not -- that's preposterous. But sometimes it's not a bad idea to feed the more intellectual side of your culture-starved brain. Tonight at ArtServe (1350 E. Sunrise Blvd., Fort Lauderdale), you've got a chance to gorge as the Ghost Light playreading series presents Ed Bullins' classic The Taking of Miss Janie. What's a playreading? you ask. If you picture theater as a stripped-down movie, then consider this its pornographically raw cousin. No sets, no costumes, no pyrotechnics... just the actors reading from a script. It may not be as edge-of-your-seat as what's packing the seats at the local cinema, but your brain will thank you in the morning. Call 954-815-2103, or e-mail email@example.com. (Paul A. Leone)
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New Zealand may seem like it's nothing more than Australia's lesser-known and slightly less significant stepbrother, but the Kiwis are far from the black sheep of the South Pacific, with a distinct culture of their own. Tonight at 7:30, New Zealand's Kahurangi Maori Dance Theater shows off the rich cultural heritage the island has to offer during "Magically Maori" at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts (201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale). The cast sings and dances, demonstrates martial-arts techniques, and belts out genealogical chants that trace the family history of the Maori -- all while scantily clad in authentic tribal dress. Get a heaping spoonful of Kiwi without the 20-hour plane ride. Call 954-462-0222, or visit www.browardcenter.org. (Paul A. Leone)
Brownie's Tavern (1411 S. Andrews Ave., Fort Lauderdale), which is pretty much the oldest one in Fort Lauderdale, is frequented by everyone from blue-collar guys to judges, says its owner, Jack Phillips, who works as a lawyer in addition to owning the bar and a deli. The barstools provide a second home for "a lot of natural comedians," Phillips says. That inspired him to get some local professional comics to come in for a comedy night, with four jokesters hitting the mic: Pam Bruno, Oni Perez, Tim Golden, and Adrian Mesa. Check it out from 8 to 11 p.m. There's no cover. Call 954-522-6697. (DF)