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Pencil This In: Doug Benson Interrupts 'Smokey and the Bandit,' Family Hosts a Photo Show and Murder Ballads

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Family hosts a photo exhibition and book launch for David David Del Pilar Potes tonight. (Image: Courtesy of Family)
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Here's what we found going on tonight in LA: Music and Murder Ballads, Doug Benson's Movie Interruption takes on Smokey and the Bandit, a photo exhibition and book launch at Family, an Allee Willis performance and an ice rink opening in Santa Monica. Read on for the details.

PHOTO EXHIBITION
Family Bookstore hosts a photo exhibition and book release for David Del Pilar Potes’ The History of the Dodo tonight from 7-9 pm. Potes, a NYC-based photographer is also founding editor/publisher of Hamburger Eyes, a photography journal, photo-zine press and studio. The exhibition’s catalog is available tonight—perfect-bound, 120 pages—limited to 300 copies.

MUSIC *
The New L.A. Folk Fest, The Echo and L.A. Record present the 3rd annual Murder Ballad tribute show at the Echoplex with a number of bands performing classic songs about crimes of passion. From New L.A. Folk Fest: “And these songs have lasted because, well, people like to sing about bodies floating in the river and driving a knife through a lover’s back.” Bands tonight include Black Hole Oscillators, Bloody Death Skull, Christian Lee Hutson (Driftwood Singers), Dirt Bird, Dorian Wood, Geronimo Getty, Gizzelle, Jenny Luna and the Moondogs, Marlene Perez (The Rhythm Shakers) with Alex Vargas, Papercranes, Restavrant, RT N’ The 44s and Vum. The venue’s been transformed so dress in your best funeral attire to really get into the spirit of things. Tickets: $10 advance/$12 at the door.

ART
Downtown Santa Monica’s opens its ICE at Santa Monica skating rink tonight from 6-10 pm with festivities and a holiday concert. Now in its 6th year (at the corner of 5th and Arizona), skaters can enjoy the winter season under the stars (and near the beach!). The evening’s hosted by former pro skaters Randy Gardner and Tai Babilonia and will feature synchronized skating team performances and free skating to music by DJ Kelly Dlux. The rink will be open to the public through Jan. 21 with a $12 admission and skate rental fee.

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FILM
Cinefamily hosts an installment of Doug Benson’s Movie Interruption, where Doug and his friends take over the front row couches, mics in hand, and say whatever they want when the movie unfolds onscreen. Tonight at 7:30 pm, they’re tackling the Burt Reynolds' action-comedy Smokey And The Bandit (1977). Tickets - $12/free for Cinefamily members.

ART TALK
Tonight at 7:30 pm. LACMA presents a talk by writer Diedrich Diederichsen, former editor-in-chief of the magazine, Spex and current visiting critic at Otis College of Art and Design. Diederichsen first came to LA 20 years ago, and was introduced to LA and its art scene by artist Mike Kelley, among others. He found a connection between the areas local sub- and microcultures and art institutions that differed from those relationships in Europe or on the East Coast. He’ll talk about the present art culture today and in LA and beyond, “in times of cuts and privatizations—and after Mike Kelley?” Free, but tickets are required.

PERFORMANCE
Allee Willis’ interactive concert Badeya, Baby! returns to LA for two nights, starting tonight at 8 pm, at the North Hollywood Performing Arts Center. Willis is a kitsch collector as well as a “songwriter, artist, multi-mediaist, director and iconic party thrower.” She’s best known for penning hits like What Have I Done to Deserve This (Pet Shop Boys), September (Earth, Wind and Fire) or co-writing I’ll Be There for You from Friends. Tonight’s show includes live music, videos, free prizes and group karaoke. Doors at 7 pm. Tickets: $45.99.

Want more events? Follow me on Twitter (@christineziemba). Or follow Lauren Lloyd—who takes care of Pencil on Wednesdays (@LadyyyLloyd).