Gino and the Sharks Just a Few Stitches EP
We’ve got another unearthed “classic” on our hands. But at least this one has a cool backstory! Gérard Mosiniak, aka Gino, grew up in a small mining town in the north of France. His grandmother helped him develop a passion for cooking, which led to him taking up an apprenticeship at a Michelin star restaurant. Throughout the ’50s and ’60s, he became enamored with rock’n’roll via LITTLE RICHARD records and the local clubs, which would feature acts like the KINKS and JIMI HENDRIX. It became his second calling, and he vowed to one day sing in a rock band. In 1971, he learned that Keith Richards had recently moved to a villa on the French Riviera and was looking for a chef. Gino got an interview and won over Richards with his cool hippie style. As their live-in chef, he hobnobs with all sorts of famous music folks and eventually uses his ties to Keith to get a gig as a DJ in one of the hottest clubs in Cannes. While there, he falls in love with a Londonite, whom he follows back to England with hopes of making progress on his dream of fronting a rock band. To make ends meet, he gets a job selling souvenirs on Carnaby Street alongside a musician named Neil who’d also moved to London in the hopes of starting a band. Unfortunately, the two are unable to help each other due to a difference in genre preferences. Neil was looking to play stuff that’s a little heavier and a little more technical. Things work out for Neil, though—he moves back to Canada and ultimately hooks up with the band RUSH! Gino gets a job managing the now-famous Great Frog jewelry shop, where he meets plenty of musicians looking to get some sick skull rings, including Lemmy from MOTÖRHEAD, who gives him the advice he needs to start a band, and he eventually recruits the SHARKS, including drummer Pedro Ortiz, who’d go on to play with JOHNNY THUNDERS and DAVID BOWIE. They recorded this three-song EP in 1978, and it was supposed to come out on Stiff Records until their manager picked a fight with the label, and the record was shelved until now. The music is fine…maybe leaning good. It’s pretty typical stuff for first-wave UK punk—dumbed-down, recycled rock riffs that are glammed up a bit—but it’s a little rough around the edges and Gino’s broken English lends the record a bit of a KBD vibe. It’s nothing to get too excited about, but wow, what a story!