There's dubiousness to mass appeal. You don't have to be a snooty hipster or a caustic elitist to be suspicious when the rabble concurs. But some art holds a universal charm that demands consensus, like Beatles songs or the best of the Pixar movies. To that list, go ahead and add comedian Brian Regan, whose enthusiastic silliness transcends age and culture barriers. "My jokes more often than not are like little plays, little vignettes, and it's me and the doctor or the fridge salesman or an inanimate object," he explains. "And in it I play a dumber version of myself or that person being dumb." Regan began doing comedy in his final semester of college, in 1980, and for three decades he's been honing one of the most distinctive voices in the business, in the process accumulating an impressive body of work that includes multiple albums and hour-long specials, and dozens of late-night TV appearances. Last year he released his latest CD, All By Myself, exclusively online at his website—a marketing strategy that preceded Louis CK's successful experiment in self-distribution by several months. "What CK did that I wasn't able to do was sell a million dollars' worth in one day," Regan notes, laughing. "He beat me to that."
Fri., March 2, 8 p.m., 2012