¿Que harán este Spring Break? Skip the beaches and head to the desert instead because this March will bring to America the largest Latin rock music festival in history
At least that’s what producer Hal Davidson called his inaugural two-day Rock Fiesta festival last November when he announced the addition of headliners Cafe Tacuba to an already all-star lineup. But it’s not just Cafe Tacuba that will be playing at the Desert Gardens Showgrounds in Quartzite, Arizona on March 18-19. Even before Cafe Tacuba, the historic event was slated to include more than 20 performances from legendary rock en español bands like Caifanes, Molotov, Kinky, El Tri, Panteon Rococo, Maldita Vecindad, PXNDX y mucho mucho más.
To say that Rock Fiesta is featuring bands important to Latin rock would be an understatement. In fact, the roster of exclusively Spanish-language acts – most of which started in Mexico in the ’80s and ’90s and have defined the genre ever since – is so unprecedented, it is unlikely that a concert of this magnitude has occurred anywhere else before. Even the popular Supersonico Festival, which launched in Los Angeles in 2014, can’t compare to the impressive showing of so many of rock en español’s most long-running and crucial bandas.
You know a festival is going to be good when the smaller-print bands could form a memorable concert all on their own. Along with the big-name legends, Rock Fiesta brings together many diverse top rock en español artists, like División Minúscula, Nortec Collective, Siddhartha, Finde, S7N and Silverio, the fascinating Mexico City techno artist who cracks jokes as he plays music, strips and tries to make the audience as uncomfortable as possible.
Representing the Latin-rock sound on this side of la frontera, Los Angeles bands Ozomatli, Metalachi and Palenke Soultribe will also be performing, rounding out a lineup that shows just how diverse the “rock en español” umbrella can be. With bands that take influence from not just rock, but also metal, ska, blues, techno, Afro-Cuban, cumbia and more, Rock Fiesta will be a comprehensive look at the constantly expanding genre.
But the weekend is about more than just el concierto. In a move that makes Rock Fiesta the Latin rock equivalent of Coachella, the two-day festival also includes camping on site (either in tents, in RVs or in rental campers), late-night DJ sets and VIP options that include rockstar amenities like express entry, access to a party tent backstage, wifi, bottled water, air-conditioned restrooms and a private bar with drink discounts.
Rock Fiesta’s official website (RockFiesta.com) has more information about the location and lineup as well as detailed breakdowns of all the various ticket packages, which start at $123 for a two-day general admission pass. Prices go up again on January 31 so lock in your tickets now. See you in el desierto!