Brian’s picks – January 18

1) Granted, the 3-year-old Cabaret at The Commons series has spotlighted an all-star cast of beautiful voices. But, for my money, the bluesy, jazzy style — and a seemingly effortless one, might I add — of piano man Spencer Day stands as among the most impressive. When you can take a classic tune from a giant-of-an-artist such as Marvin Gaye and make it better, then goodness gracious, you’ve got a sound everyone should hear. Day returns to the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic’s series at 7:30 p.m. today and already has said the audience can prep for songs from his latest disc, “Angel City,” and plenty of laughter. Only $40 tickets are left for the slightly more than 400-seat show. Information: 812-376-2638 or

2) The first joke I ever heard Columbus comic Jeff Bodart unleash live at Indianapolis’ Funny Bone 15 years ago was this gem: “I’m a recovered bed wetter. Yeah — been dry for 13 years now.” I knew he would find his audience. And the “Bob and Tom Show” writer and frequent guest has done exactly that. He marks the release of his second album, “Adorable and Affordable,” with a show with a range of his comedy friends at 7:30 p.m. Friday at The Harlequin Theatre inside FairOaks Mall, 2380 25th St. in Columbus. Tickets: $15 in advance, available at the mall office or Viewpoint Books downtown or, or $20 at the door.

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Brian Blair is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at or 812-379-5672.