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THE NAME GAME

Singer, songwriter and self-promoter Pat Oldani assumes a new alias

Pat Oldani is such a charismatic self-promoter that he often seems like rock & roll's answer to that guy with the question-mark jacket who screams about how easy it is to get government freebies on 3 a.m. infomercials. To get the goods from Oldani, though, you'll have to bypass Uncle Sam. Think more along the lines of "Auntie Griselda," the Monkees tune.

Beneath the hyperbole is the true fruit of Oldani's labor. Along with being an actor, he's an ambitious pop-rock songwriter who's been lurking in the local shadows for years. "Starnineteen's been doing this since 1995," he reveals, "with Calvin at the helm." Calvin, you ask? Oldani switches names like a fugitive — first Starnineteen, then Johnny Thunderbolt and now Calvin Flash. There's something vaguely T. Rex-ian about those aliases — you don't mind that Oldani is banging his own gong. "The Johnny Thunderbolt moniker has been put to bed," he explains. "It's (now) his cousin Calvin Flash." Calvin has recorded two brand-new songs — one being the most bodacious two-and-a-half-minute, balls-to-the-wall full-throttle punk anthem called "Doriana Gray." He calls it a "chick version" of the classic story about the face on a painting that ages in lieu of its vernal subject, who gets uglier only on the inside. You just might hear that song when Flash takes the stage on Thursday at Mississippi Nights with Drift and Tinhorn. "Nine, nine, ninety-nine," says Oldani, ominously. "I want you to put it that way — we're playing Sept. 9, 1999." He imbues the date with an air of millenniumesque psych-hype. Or will it be more like a sock hop? Refuting that notion he discloses, "We're probably going to have visuals with some video wall stuff. It's going to be unlike many of the shows you've seen around here." Coming from the spectacle-minded Oldani, you can call that a promise. Who knows — he may even come out in one of those jackets full of question marks.

 
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