The Carnivaleros


The Morpholinos are (L-R) Gary Mackender, Neil McCallion, Nick Augustine, and Karl Hoffmann

The Morpholinos band is Neil McCallion on guitar and vocals, Gary Mackender on accordion and vocals, Karl Hoffmann on bass and vocals, and Nick Augustine on drums. The music can best be described as the Texas Tornados meet up with Nick Lowe and John Hiatt for a drink in a funky bar in Nogales.

You can catch them at their 'Last Thursday' residency at Monterey Court in 2023. Join us, as Karl puts it, to listen or twitch to our obscure choice of covers!

Thursday, October 26, 2023
Monterey Court
505 W Miracle Mile
Tucson, AZ
6:30-9pm - no cover!
For reservations, click here!

Saturday, October 28, 2023
Triangle L Ranch
2805 N. Triangle L Ranch Rd
Oracle, AZ
GLOW at 7pm, Band 9-11pm

Thursday, November 30, 2023
Monterey Court
505 W Miracle Mile
Tucson, AZ
6:30-9pm - no cover!
For reservations, click here!

After a twenty year run with the Carnivaleros, the band name has been retired. Read all about it here. But due to popular demand we have decided to play a couple shows a year. On board are Gary Mackender on accordion and vocals, Karl Hoffmann on bass and vocals, Joe Fanning on electric and acoustic guitars, baritone, and mandolin, Björgvin Benediktsson on acoustic guitar and vocals, Les Merrihew on drums, and special guest Alex Flores on sax.

(top, L-R) Gary Mackender, Joe Fanning, Karl Hoffmann (btm, L-R) Björgvin Benediktsson, Alex Flores, Les Merrihew
A rare appearance in town!

Saturday, November 4, 2023
TENWEST Street Fest
6th ave & 7th st
Tucson, AZ
2:30pm for one long set

And next Spring we were honored to be asked to play a short set on the opening night of the Tucson Folk Festival!

Friday, April 5, 2024
Tucson Folk Festival
Downtown Tucson, AZ
Approx. 8pm, Main Stage

Tallsome Tales

"Who are these guys? For starters, they are fronted by accordionist/vocalist Gary Mackender (well, he also plays drums, percussion, and additional keyboards), and featuring bassist Karl Hoffmann, drummer Les Merrihew, and guitarist/fretmaster Joe Fanning, plus a slew of Tucson kith and kin pitching in (backing vocalist Bjorgvin Benediktsson is also now listed as being an additional guitarist). Together, the stir up a giant melting pot of sonic chorizo gumbo that will leave you demanding encores. Or second helpings, take your pick.

Indeed, from the noirish polka pop of “The Die Was Cast” and the surreal, Tom Waitsian hectic blues of “Liquor, Vice, and Sin” to the sensual spaghetti western romance that is “Belinda Bonita” and the outrageous Los Lobos-meets-Little Feat “Justified Fitting End” (which should be turned into a crime novel – check out the lyrics here), Tallsome Tales is a guaranteed party starter. This group effortlessly bridges genres and thwarts preconceptions, period." - Fred Mills, Blurt Online, April, 2018

Dreams Are Strange

"Dreams are Strange is the band’s fifth release, and every Carnivaleros CD is excellent, that much goes without saying, an intoxicating mixture of roots musics of all brands: zydeco, folk, Appalachian, Tex-Mex, swing, and, yep, even waltzes, though Big Louie and the Versailles Court would never recognize the lattermost incarnation here, I’m pretty damn sure. More, each disc is better than what preceded it. That alone should supply the band with ample reason to…cut it the hell out!! This is Earth, we’re allowed only just so much above our station, and then have to shuffle off the coil, so don’t force the envelope! The listener is advised to afterwards listen to The Osmonds, The Archies, or The Bangles as penance for having tasted of Eden and the apple." - Mark S. Tucker, VERITAS VAMPIRUS, Issue 1,196, April, 2016

"The band keeps a steady rhythm up on drums, bass, banjo, and other strings as The Carnivaleros make their way over “Hesitation Bridge” across thickly woven riffs and rhythms. The beat huffs a gypsy thump to welcome “Mamie Eisenhower” as “Tumacori” drifts on a dry desert breeze while a jazz shuffle dances in “Donna’s Song” and “Time Traveling” coasts on a percussive rumble." - Danny McCloskey, The Alternate Root, April 21, 2016