"Sushi and Sauce Piquante" Shines Light On Musical Treasure

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Review of "Sushi and Sauce Piquante" Rough-Cut Screening at Cinema on the Bayou Film Festival


Gerry McGee is a national treasure and renowned lead guitarist who was born in Eunice.  Thing is, you'd be hard-pressed to find some Acadians who know McGee's work.  Local filmmaker Pat Mire shined a light on McGee's personality and work in the new documentary, "Sushi and Sauce Piquante." The film made its U.S. premiere at the opening night of last week's eighth annual Cinema on the Bayou Festival.

After the film's 10-minute-plus introduction that features nothing but sweet, sweet licks from McGee and a little bit on how McGee got his style, you finally get a little background on just how good the guitarist is, by industry standards.  "Gerry McGee is one of the best lead guitarists I've played with," Kris Kristofferson said in the film. "And his voice, it's as soulful as Ray Charles."

In his career, McGee has done studio work with everyone from Elvis Presley to Jerry Lee Lewis to The Monkees to Dr. John, as well as played with surf-rock kings and enormously popular-in-Japan the Ventures. McGee has also released a couple solo albums.  In the film, actor and former rocker Edward James Olmos testifies that because of McGee's work on the early Delaney & Bonnie & Friends records, The Beatles broke up. Olmos added that without McGee to look up to, guitarists Eric Clapton and George Harrison probably would have gotten bored and not become the powers they were.

Before the premiere, Mire told the packed audience at the Acadiana Center for the Arts, "This is truly something special to work with an idol."  To call the film a labor of love for Mire is putting it lightly. Mire spent more than two years working on the film, interviewing and following McGee to provide a story of one of the area's unknown treasures. Mire spent around eight months just editing it as well as traveling to Japan and around the country to get all the interviews and footage.

"If you were to have a picture in dictionary next to word meticulous, it would be a picture of Pat," Mire's partner-in-crime/producer Rebecca Hudsmith said. "He's so much a perfectionist when it comes to shooting and editing a film."