By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
Such quandaries are often overlooked by those who aren't directly associated with a band that endures traumatic times, but the delicate balancing of sorrow and practicality will typically span a lengthy period of time. After playing with McNeely as a part of his band for five years—and knowing him for more than twice that amount of time—Jones is still searching for a replacement solution that he hopes can be a lasting one.
Sure, for the Pistol Grip Lassos, the function of a bass player will be fulfilled soon, but Jones finds himself concerned over the intangible aspects that will remain missing and what to expect from the future as well.
"His honesty is probably the biggest thing we'll miss," says Jones. "It's like that feeling when you move to a new city or go off to college. There's an exciting sense of the unknown, even though you're completely scared. It's a new chapter."
Similar to The Will Callers, Jones had virtually no qualms deciding his band would continue to perform as a unit, even without McNeely's key steadying presence. In the case of both acts, commencing with the music that their departed friends helped them create has seemed the ideal way in which to honor their memories, even if the compromise was awkward and hard to understand for those looking from the outside.
"We wanted to avoid saying, 'Well, Ace would've wanted to do this or that,'" says Jones, chuckling at the understandable nature of such habits. "We've got to make our own decisions, but we, for sure, know that Ace would've kicked all of our asses if we had just given up. So that's not even an option."