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Arts and Entertainment

Pencil This In: Free Music Concerts Around LA; Kevin Pollak is Talking like Walken; and Phil Tippett with 'Dragonslayer'

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DRAGONSLAYER web from Cinefamily on Vimeo.

We’ve pulled together a spectacular list of things to do tonight in LA (if we do say so ourselves). Special effects master Phil Tippett is live at Cinefamily with a screening of Dragonslayer to boot; CAFAM holds a craft night around stencils and spray paints; Kevin Pollak records a podcast live doing his best impersonation of Christopher Walken; The Gamble House begins its limited Upstairs-Downstairs tours; a Metro art tour and free music tonight around the city. Read on for all the details.

Unleash your inner street artiste tonight for an Etsy Meet & Make: Craft Night at CAFAM Collaborative Stencils & Spray Paint from 7-9 pm (doors at 6:45 pm). Learn the basics of creating stencils for spray painting and other other arts while creating a temporary fence for the museum’s courtyard. There will be project demonstrations at 7 and 7:30 pm. Cost: $7/ Free for CAFAM Members (includes materials, drinks, and snacks). RSVP preferred.

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Tonight Cinefamily presents An Evening with Phil Tippett at 8 pm. The visual effects guru of films like The Empire Strikes Back, Starship Troopers, RoboCop, Howard the Duck, Return of the Jedi and Jurassic Park (to name a few) will be doing a Q&A, moderated by Rob Schrab. The program will be followed by a screening (at approximately 10 pm) of a brand-new HD master of the film Dragonslayer (1981), featuring effects by the dragon supervisor Tippett (then head of animation at Industrial Light and Magic). Tickets: $12/free for members.

Tonight at 8 pm, the Westside Comedy Theater presents Talkin' Walkin' - The Live Podcast. In this comedy podcast, Kevin Pollak channeling and only talking like Christopher Walken, discusses “life and the cornucopia of crap that fills it.” Joining him in the podcast tonight is special guest This week's special guest is Dana Gould (comedian and longtime Simpsons writer. Tickets: $10.

Beginning today and through Aug. 18, The Gamble House in Pasadena offers Upstairs-Downstairs tours, opening the doors to its servants’ hall and rooms for the first time in its history. This national landmark is a prime example of American Arts and Crafts style architecture, which was designed in 1908 by Charles and Henry Greene for David and Mary Gamble of the Procter & Gamble Company. New information has recently been uncovered about the Gamble family and its servants, allowing more personalized information on the tours. [Note: Most of the first floor—entry hall, living room, dining room, den, and guest bedroom—will not be available for touring due to floor conservation. Admission: $20, but free for children 12 and younger. Space is limited. No tours on Mondays and Wednesdays.

To celebrate the Hammer’s current exhibition A. Quincy Jones: Building for Better Living, the museum continues its music series Music for Better Living tonight at 7 pm. Spinning tunes in the courtyard are KCRW DJ Anne Litt and a performance by The Decoders. Admission is free, and the galleries stay open late. There’s a cash bar available, and parking is $3 after 6 pm under the museum for $3.

Take a ride on the Metro tonight for a Metro Art Moves_DTLA summer arts tour, led by docents and local artists to introduce rider to the Metro’s diverse art collections and diverse stops served by rail and bus. Meet promptly at 5:30 pm at the entrance to the 7th Street/Metro Center Station, at the corner of Figueroa and 7th Street, under the ceiling mural by Terry Schoonhoven. The tour ends approximately at 7 pm at the Civic Center/Grand Park Station, at Grand Park, in time for an evening of food trucks and music with The Rebel Light, Holly Conlan and The Young Romans.

Tonight at 8 pm, The Skirball continues its 2013 Sunset Concerts series with a free concert featuring the West Coast premiere of Israeli composer, producer and performer Shye Ben-Tzur. He “blends devotional qawwali music with Hebrew poetry, Indian classical vocals, rocking bass, and Spanish guitar.” In tonight’s concert, he’ll be accompanied by accomplished musicians from the Rajasthani “gypsy” tradition. Get there early to explore the Skiball or see Gary Baseman’s exhibition if you haven’t already. Parking is $10 cash only.

It’s another night of music at the Twilight Concert Series at the Santa Monica Pier tonight at 7 pm. Kicking off the evening is a performance from Austin-based Nikki Jensen, followed by Australian singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Xavier Rudd. Free.

*Pencil pick of the day

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