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Pencil This In: Funny Freestyle Raps, Local Art and an Elvis Class

More than 40 artists are featured in a new show opening at TAG Gallery. (Image: Courtesy of TAG Gallery.)
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Things are s-l-o-w-l-y coming back to life on the LA events scene as everyone eases into the New Year. We found a couple of items that piqued our interest tonight including a new art show at TAG Gallery; freestyle rap and comedy at NerdMelt; and a history class on Elvis Presley. Read on for all the details.

TAG Gallery in Bergamot Station in Santa Monica opens its 2012 group show today. Buy Local: Think International features all 40 TAG artists exhibiting works in all media and genres of painting, sculpture and photography. The opening reception is Saturday from 5-8 pm. The show runs through Jan. 28.

Tonight at 8 pm NerdMelt presents The BEATdown at Meltdown Comics. Hosted by Eliza Skinner (Diamond Lion, Baby Wants Candy) and Joshua Silverstein (“The hardest working beatboxer in LA”) the event throws some of LA’s best comedians and one audience volunteer together in an improvised/freestyle rap battle. Tickets: $8 in advance, $10 at the door.

It’s Elvis month at the Grammy Museum with special programming dedicated to the king of rock’n’roll. Tonight at 8 pm, Executive Director Robert Santelli begins a three-part class on The Elvis Presley Story, tracing Presley's career from his early days in Memphis, to his time in Hollywood, his late '60s comeback, and his tragic death in 1977 at age 42. The class continues on Jan. 10 and 17. Free, but reservations at are required.

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Tonight's your last chance to catch Sigur Ros’ second live film Inni at the Downtown Independent. It’s a follow up to the band’s 2007 film Heima. “Whereas that film positioned the enigmatic group in the context of their Icelandic homeland, providing geographical, social and historical perspectives on their otherworldly music, with uplifting results, Inni focuses purely on the band’s performance, which is artfully and intimately captured by French Canadian director Vincent Morisset.” Tickets: $13. Film starts at 7 pm.

*Pencil pick of the day

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