Tacos and Music

Cinco de Mayo Sabroso, The Offspring bring unique celebration to Rillito

By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski

Cinco de Mayo is turning musical.

The Offspring will headline the Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco & Music Festival on Saturday, May 5, along with Pennywise, The Vandals, Lit, Unwritten Law and Los Kung Fu Monkeys.

“It’s going to be a great Cinco de Mayo,” says Dexter Holland, The Offspring’s frontman.

In previous years, the festival called Southern California its home. This year, organizers expanded it to six cities outside of SoCal, including Tucson. Sabroso will feature more than 100 craft beer samples, Lucha Libre-style wrestling, top chef-created tacos and Holland’s Gringo Bandito hot sauce.

In between tours, The Offspring has been recording new material. (Photo courtesy The Offspring)

“This festival is extra special,” Holland says. “We decided, ‘Let’s make the best one be in Tucson.’”

The Offspring has been involved before. Holland says tacos, beer and punk rock are “ingredients for a good day.”

“The idea was to get taco vendors, and local brewers and let people just have tacos and sample beer, if they want to,” Holland says. “It’s a way of expanding it beyond a concert and making it a day. The combination worked really well last year. It sold out really quickly.”

The festival gives The Offspring the chance to keep its name out there, although it regularly tours. In between gigs, it is recording new material. (Tuesday, July 31, it will coheadline Ak-Chin Pavilion in Phoenix with 311. Visit livenation.com for more information.)

“I don’t think anyone is going to be surprised by what they hear,” Holland says. “It sounds like what The Offspring sounds like. At the core of it, we’re just an OC punk band.”

But in 2017, Holland wrapped up an Offspring leave of absence to earn a Ph.D. in molecular biology from University of Southern California. It took him nearly five years to finish.

His dissertation was called Discovery of Mature MicroRNA Sequences within the Protein-Coding Regions of Global HIV-1 Genomes: Predictions of Novel Mechanisms for Viral Infection and Pathogenicity.

“My research focused on HIV,” he says. “I’m interested in virology and I wanted to contribute in some small way to the knowledge that has been learned about HIV and AIDS.”

Holland is still a punk rocker at heart and is looking forward to Sabroso.

“You can expect energy, sweat, punk rock and drunkenness,” he says with a laugh. “We just plan on putting on an energetic show and have a good time with it. This isn’t classical music. No one is coming here to be intellectually enlightened.”

More Info:

What: Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco & Music Festival

When: 1 to 9 p.m. Saturday, May 5. 1 to 4 p.m. is 21 and older; after 4 p.m. is all ages.

Where: Rillito Park Racetrack, 4502 N. First Avenue

Cost: Tickets start at $29.50.

Info: sabrosotacofest.com/tucson