Twenty years. It’s been twenty years for Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers and the release of Honky Tonk Union, and we’re just about 20 days until Roger, PH, Jim, and Nick are back to rock the beaches of Puerto Peñasco for Circus Mexicus. As in the past, this year again promises more venues, more bands, and even more giving back. With under three weeks out, we caught up with RCPM organizers to chat about the 20th year celebration and a “Top 20” of sorts to get our Circus on. It’s worth noting since the band used to hold 2 CMs a year, this is more than the XX edition, but who’s counting?
Rocky Point 360: We see there’s a 20th anniversary toast on the patio at Skullyz to kick off the weekend (located across from Peñasco del Sol hotel, upstairs)– for those who don’t know yet, why is that spot particularly important for this celebration?
RCPM crew: Back when it was Sunset Cantina, the bar and lot next door held several years of Mexicus shows in the beginning. Roger and PH, with Lawrence Zubia as well as Kelly Steward are going to play sets Thursday, June 6th on from 3-5pm kicking off the party at Skully’z (formerly Sunset Cantina) to celebrate 20 years.
Rocky Point 360: RCPM and CM have done a great job of introducing musicians and bands to a larger audience; I can’t help but think of The Black Moods’ Josh Kennedy joining Roger on stage when CM set up at the Wrecked RV, followed by the whole band making a yearly CM appearance pretty much since then. Along with music favs once again joining CM this year, from the Jons to Lawrence Zubia and of course TBM, what/who should we definitely be on the lookout for this year?
RCPM crew: Bringing all kinds of bands playing various types of music has always been a focus for Circus Mexicus. We hear Josh Kennedy has taken his white pants to the dry cleaner already so he’ll look pretty Thursday and Friday nights! Drew Hagar´s band S.o.S. has a great new record, as do Jared & The Mill and The Cole Trains. Miles Nielsen & the Rusted Hearts have a new EP as well and toured with RCPM through the Midwest US in the Spring. American Aquarium has been touring heavily and will be firing on all cylinders when they perform Saturday night!
Rocky Point 360: With so many choices this year on venues and performances, how do you suggest people best pace themselves?
RCPM crew: Many people see it as a 4-day music bender. Drink water in the morning, take your liver pill and enjoy wherever the music takes you. Sleep begins June 10th.
Rocky Point 360: Talking about pointers, since it’s the 20th anniversary RCPM edition, how about 20 tips about on how to best CM in Rocky Point – in no particular order.
- Smile, have fun and get to know our neighbors to the South.
- Travel times? Plan on leaving as early as you can to get to Peñasco, and expect delays at the border going into Mexico if driving at peak times during the day. Rocky Point 360: Oh yes, and note there’s been some highway work on the north side of the border, so keep in mind there may be delays heading to Mexico (some spots had been down to one lane, though we hear this should be open up again come Circus)
- Parking can be a challenge – walk where you can, carpool or grab a cab. It’s best to negotiate your fare before you get in the cab.
- Regardless if you’re in the GA or VIP section, feel free to bring blankets and beach chairs (not VIP decks). Sorry, we DO NOT have room for these on the VIP decks, but all are welcome to put them wherever you want in the sand behind the front of the house area at main stage.
- Get to the main stage shows when doors open at 6:00 both Friday and Saturday nights. Drew Hagar will bring rock songs from his new record Friday, and Orkesta Mendoza will bring their high energy Saturday night. We’re making it worth your while by offering Happy Hour pricing until 7:30 while enjoying all nationally touring bands on the main stage both nights for the first time ever.
- Donations? If you’re able to bring clothes or household goods to donate to the local children’s homes, please drop them off at Banditos on Friday, June 7.
- Bring a few extra dollars to purchase Raffle Tickets at Will Call when you exchange your paper confirmation for wristbands. The annual Shake, Raffle and Roll charity raffle gets better every year with all proceeds staying in Peñasco to support children and family-oriented charities. Check out Circus Mexicus’ social media the week before to see what’s available!
- For the dog lovers out there – consider looking up Barb’s Dog Rescue online and make a donation. Barb has done an amazing job taking dogs off the street and controlling the pet population around Peñasco.
- Enjoy as much seafood as possible. Shrimp, grouper and scallops are amazing, visit the fresh fish shops on the Malecon for great deals.
- Hungry? Gus’ Tacos on Calle 13, Pollo Lucas on Juarez Blvd., or any of the food vendors at the main stage or Banditos for tacos are a must. Pickled onions are the secret. Got a few extra bones in your pocket? Pane y Vino under the lighthouse or El Buzo on Juarez are both outstanding.
- Up early? In addition to the Breakfast shows being held at Al Capone’s and Xochitl’s, check out Kaffe Haus, Playa Bonita Hotel and Max’s for great breakfast as well.
- Thirsty? Any of the CM stage venues will keep you quenched, but additional local favorites include Chabalas on Calle 13 (also known as OD bar), Lucky’s Cantina and Shark Bite on the Malecon, Manny’s Street Bar in the Mirador, and El Capitan atop the mountain under the lighthouse are all worth a visit or two. Look for new drinks on the menu all weekend at Banditos while enjoying shows.
- For great locally roasted coffee, check out Puerto Viejo Roasters in the Old Port area and grab a cup with Luis or take a bag home.
- Tipping? Si, por favor. Don’t feel you need to go overboard tipping big amounts of money, but try to tip everybody you can. Rocky Point 360: Great point! We’ll jump in and say please keep in mind lots of folks out there, from grocery baggers to parking attendants, work only for tips so be sure to have some loose pesos in your pockets (5s and 10s are particularly good for this kind of tipping). Wait staff we’d recommend between 15% to 20%
- Haven’t visited an oyster farm recently? Head toward Caborca off Fremont Blvd a few miles and look for oyster farm signs on the right (ostiones). Best to bring a truck or four-wheel drive vehicle and a dry cooler to put your freshly harvested oysters in to enjoy later.
- Save yourself headaches and money! Drive slow, stop for the stop signs you don’t see and save your drinking until after driving. Download the GringGO App before you leave for access to numerous resources to help make your time in Mexico even more incredible.
- Cocktail tip. Bring a couple bags of ice to store in your freezer so a properly iced cocktail can be yours with no risks the following day.
- Plan on warm days and cool nights. Sunscreen during the day will help keep things cool at night.
- Leave your watch at home. Let the sun and music guide you to wherever you want to be.
- Shit happens. If somebody spills your drink or you’re bothered, shrug it off. Karma deposit.
BONUS TIP for locals! ¿Eres residente permanente en Puerto Peñasco? Presente su identificación oficial (INE, licencia de manejo, etc.) y reciba un descuento de 50% en la compra de boletos de Admisión General para los conciertos principales de viernes y sábado.
Circus Mexicus 2019 is June 6th – 9th Tickets and full band line-up at: www.circusmexicus.net