You can tell it’s summer and not just because you scalded your hands gripping the steering wheel.

Summertime in Tucson can sometimes be the death knell to live entertainment.

Frankly, what artist not from Arizona and not used to our punishing heatwaves would even consider packing up the van/bus and putting themselves through that kinda misery? We seriously question their judgment.

But we also celebrate their bravery and, by extension, our own as we leave our air conditioned bliss to check out these shows:

  • Brothers David and Rene Pacheco — aka Tropa Magica — set out to fuse their love of cumbia and punk under one umbrella, but here’s the thing: by their own admission, they really aren’t savvy enough in either genre. So instead, they came up with what they like to call “Psychedelic Cumbia Punk” — “a sound not Latino enough for the Mexicans nor surf enough for the psych-punks,” according to a definition posted on their website. The formula has been successful enough to land the brothers on the marquees of Coachella, Desert Daze and other regional festivals near their native California. They’re in our corner of the world Friday, June 21, when they play Club Congress, 311 E. Congress St. Their free concert begins at 8 p.m. and it’s open to those 21 and older.
  • Metal punk legends D.R.I — that stands for Dirty Rotten Imbeciles — join fellow punk rockers Fastplants on Friday, June 21, for what promises to be an evening of blissful head-banging. Also on the bill for the all-ages show: Tucson metal punk bands Bordertown Devils, Stubborn Old Bastard, Order Execution and Death Church. Doors at The Rock, 136 N. Park Ave., open at 6:30 p.m. and tickets are $17 in advance at; it’s $20 day of show.
  • Elvis is in the building! OK, not that Elvis, but Elvis tribute artist Chris MacDonald brings his “Memories of Elvis” stage show to Desert Diamond Casino on Saturday, June 22. Expect to hear the King of Rock’s greatest hits and some with the unique perspective of time: MacDonald has been paying homage to Elvis for decades including at Graceland Hotel as part of the annual Elvis birthday celebrations. Tickets for Saturday’s show at Desert Diamond, 1100 W. Pima Mine Road, are $12.50 to $27.50 through

Contact reporter Cathalena E. Burch at or 573-4642. On Twitter @Starburch

Cathalena has covered music for the Star for the past 20 years. She's a graduate of Arizona State University has worked at Sedona Red Rock News, Niagara Gazette in Niagara Falls, New York; and USA Today.