Mexican Moonshine is an interesting product from a tequila collectors point of view as well as the multitude of avid Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers (RCPM) fans.
Considering my website one might think I discovered Roger Clyne and The Peacemakers while researching Mexican Moonshine Tequila. In this case it's actually the other way around. I learned about Mexican Moonshine while trying to find details about the Circus Mexicus gigs in Rocky Point. I was a RCPM fan first and as a result, coincidentally found out about Roger's tequila.
Thanks to RCPM Waterin' Hole members Amy Brown and Charles Ball for supplying me with great pictures of their prized bottles of Roger's famed elixir. The "Waterin' Hole" is a forum for fans of RCPM. Without their help I could not have added this page to PocoTequila.Com.
I'll try to give a quick summary of Roger's resume here but will no doubt get some stuff screwed up so please, Waterin' Hole members bare with me. Roger Clyne was a founding member of The Refreshments, a band out of Tempe Arizona that saw some success in the mid to late 90's. The Refreshments debut "studio" album, Fizzy, Fuzzy, Big and Buzzy had at least 3 songs that enjoyed a fair amount of play on progressive, alternative radio stations. "Girly", "Down Together" and probably most popular, "Banditos". If the title of this song doesn't ring a bell the following verse will probably jar the memory of some:
"So give your ID card to the border guard
Your alias says your Captain Jean Luc Picard
Of the United Federation of Planets
Cause they won't speak English any ways"
The bands roots in the Arizona desert and proximity to the Mexican Border obviously lent inspiration to the "Alternative Rock/Country" (for lack of a better phrase) sound and many of Roger Clyne's lyrics. From that first album came songs like, Banditos, Mexico and the perennial favorite "Nada" , which has the tequila inspired chorus of , “tip the bottle and bite the lime.” For whatever reasons The Refreshments disbanded not long after the release of their second "full-length" album, "Bottle & Fresh Horses." Roger Clyne and drummer, PH Naffah went on to form RCPM and the rest is, as they say, history. RCPM is still based in Tempe but tour frequently and continue to perform gems and classics from The Refreshments catalog including one of my favorites, Una Soda. Of course, Clyne continues to draw inspiration from his love for Border regions and Mexico with his song writing. In 2004 RCPM released the album, Americano. Along with the title track the album has other songs with a sort of cross-cultural, Border feel including the inspiration for Roger's tequila, "Mexican Moonshine."
When talking about RCPM you have to mention the legendary live concerts put on by the band, twice a year, every year, in Puerto Peñasco, Mexico. The Circus Mexicus shows have taken on a life of their own. Each May and October hordes of RCPM fanatics and party goers descend on Puerto Peñasco, or Rocky Point as it's know to most in Arizona, for a wild weekend of music and celebration. Rocky Point is located in Sonora, Mexico on the northern shore of the Sea of Cortez (Gulf of California) about an hour South of the Arizona- Mexico Border and about a 5 hour drive from either Phoenix or Tucson. I've been wanting to get to a Circus Mexicus for a few years now but haven't made it yet. I've heard they can get, let's just say, "festive." This biannual event is another thing that gives RCPM such a strong connection with their loyal fans. I believe it was at one of the 2004 shows that Roger's Mexican Moonshine, after a good period of rumors and anticipation, was finally debuted. Now, that brings us to the tequila. There were just a thousand bottles ever made and/or sold and I wouldn't look for it on the market any time soon, if ever. The tequila was apparently produced at a very small family owned facility. Making tequila is one thing, but I know from personal projects and observation, getting it to the market is something else. There is a lot involved with factory designation, labeling requirements in both Mexico and the USA, export licenses, numbers and so on. The bottles that were originally produced don't have a NOM (Norma Oficial Mexicana) listed on the labels. This official number is required by Mexican Law to be on the labels of all 100% Agave Tequila. I'm sure it has been these sort of legalities or red tape that held up the production and sale of the tequila. I imagine it seemed liked a good idea to Roger Clyne at the time but there was more involved then originally anticipated. Even though there is demand and constant inquiries from fans wanting Mexican Moonshine it appears this project has been put on the back burner. From what I've read on the Internet this tequila project is not a top priority for Roger. It's obvious that he has a love for the Mexican culture as well as tequila and I'm sure he'd love to see the Mexican Moonshine concept to full fruition. However RCPM popularity continues to grow so understandably the band requires his primary focus. The Peacemakers are on the road a lot and have a new (2007) album out. I've not tasted or heard much about the tequila itself but the quality of the spirit, at this point is probably incidental. Mexican Moonshine's value would be the novelty of it's story and extremely limited production. Having one of these original 1000 bottles of Mexican Moonshine would undoubtedly be considered a valued collectors item.
Additionally Charles Ball was kind enough to provide the copy from the hang tags that adorned these 100% Agave, Primera Edición bottles of Mexican Moonshine. So from the words of Roger himself:
Hola Amigas y Amigos!
I have literally been singing the praises of the agave spirit for over a decade. And now, thanks to the efforts of many noble contributors, you hold in your hand our first, our own, our most enthusiastic offering. This is a novel incarnation of an ancient recipe; an elixir forged of Sun, Earth, Water and Fire. It is a mixture of authenticity, integrity, tradition and fun! This is Mexican Moonshine!
May your heart and your cup overflow under the glow…
Enjoy responsibly con Mucho gusto!
The Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers website:
The Mexican Moonshine Site:
Not much here but click the little icon in lower right corner to see a quick video of Roger and a blue agave.