‘Jacob,” a somber tale of young angst and the pain of divorce, took Cary Pierce only 30 minutes to write. One-half of the Dallas guitar duo Jackopierce, Pierce says he gets a little weepy whenever he and partner Jack O’Neill perform the track off their T Bone Burnett-produced debut album, “Bringing On the Weather” (A&M).
He’s not alone.
“Musician magazine, in their review of the album, said on the first line, ‘When was the last time a song made you cry?’,” Pierce said recently. “The guy who wrote it was talking about how embarrassed he was about crying. The song kinda gets me too from time to time.”
Pierce and O’Neill met while attending Southern Methodist University on theater scholarships and teamed because “we saw other people doing the acoustic thing and we thought, ‘wouldn’t that be cool to just play songs, make some money, get free beer and meet girls,’ ” Pierce said.
As the pair’s popularity grew around Dallas and the region, they developed a strategy to get the word out about tour dates. They started a mailing list, taking down phone numbers and calling anyone who would listen. The list has swelled to 10,000; they regularly play to 3,000 in clubs, and attract 300 at in-store events.
“We hit ’em really hard, really fast, really quick. We go into the town and kill it,” Pierce said of their guerrilla-style tactic. “We’ll play on the streets, hand out fliers, talk to the press, doing whatever we can to get them to the show. And it’s now starting to pay off.”
BWF (before we forget): Jackopierce disbanded in late 1997.