WEDNESDAY

A few years back, a doctor diagnosed me with obsessive-compulsive disorder on the basis of my affirmative response to a single question: “Do you get songs stuck in your head?” “But I’m a music reviewer!” I protested. (I’ve since ditched the dubious doc and spent the extra cash on CDs.) Currently in heavy-cerebral rotation is a minor masterpiece, “Nickels and Dimes,” from Blackie and the Rodeo Kings’ Kings of Love. According to the liner notes, it’s the theme song from a movie that was never made, “about a brother and sister who escape the drudgery and homophobia of a small town for the glitter of the city and the music business.” Warm and jagged-edged, it sounds like Tom Robinson fronting the Band, and it’s co-written and sung by Stephen Fearing, easily one of the most dynamic and intelligent performers on the singer-songwriter scene. When he’s not playing with fellow Canadians Colin Linden and Tom Wilson in the Rodeo Kings, Fearing’s often on the road, a place he’s known well since he left Vancouver for Ireland at age 7. He’s just released a live CD, So Many Miles, that comes close to capturing the magic he makes onstage, but it doesn’t match the experience of being within fret-gazing distance of the man himself. So see him while he’s here—enjoy his espresso baritone, his nimble fingerpicking, and his finely etched lyrics—and see if he reprograms your mental jukebox—at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 8, at the Kennedy Center’s Grand Foyer. Free. (202) 467-4600. (Pamela Murray Winters)