ONTARIO – They made it to “America’s Got Talent” and the McMinnville trio of We Three will be at Four Rivers Culture Center Friday, Jan. 18, for a one-night only concert.
“It is a program where an 8-year-old can watch it with their 80-year-old grandparent,” said Matt Stringer, executive director of Four Rivers Cultural Center.
The concert kicks off at 7 p.m. and the doors open at 6:30 p.m. at Meyer McLean Performing Arts Theatre in Ontario. Tickets are $15 and can be bought online at eventbrite.com.
A year ago, band members Joshua Humlie, 27 , Manny Humlie 22, and their sister Bethany Blanchard, 25 – worked as part-time music teachers in McMinnville.
Last spring, an “America’s Got Talent” producer stumbled across We Three on Instagram, said Bethany Blanchard.
“She told us, ‘you guys were smiling and looked like you liked each other,’” said Blanchard.
From there the group auditioned for “America’s Got Talent” in May and its track, “Heaven’s Not Too Far Away” impressed the panel judges.
The song, about their late mother, helped propel We Three into the semi-finals of the show.
The experience opened doors for the group, said Blanchard.
“We learned a lot and met some incredible people and it gave us a platform we had not had before,” said Blanchard.
In mid-December, We Three released its first 12-track album. The self-titled album debuted at No. 4 on iTunes.
That success is impressive, said Stringer.
“I wanted to bring them here because I thought they were amazing musicians,” said Stringer.
Blanchard said the group was a little surprised with the No. 4 slot in the iTunes album chart but the success can be traced to hard work.
The group rehearses six hours a day and spent the last six months in the studio working on the new album. The group is preparing for a tour and the crowd in Ontario in January will be among the first to hear the new album live.
“We just love playing shows. We have so much fun playing, and it will be high energy with lots of variety,” said Blanchard.
We Three appealed to Stringer because they were Oregonians, talented and popular.
Blanchard plays bass while Joshua plays the piano and drums. Manny Humlie plays the guitar.
Stringer said booking We Three wasn’t a challenge despite its growing popularity.
“They were very responsive. They love Oregon and like performing in Oregon and are extremely sophisticated. I am pretty impressed with their technical set up for their performances and they are professionals,” said Stringer.
Booking We Three is part of an ongoing plan by Stringer.
“We are constantly trying to bring more contemporary artists. The objective being to get young people in our area, including Boise and Meridian, to look at us as a depository of popular contemporary music,” said Stringer.
He said he booked more than 60 events in 2019.
“We are trying to keep enough activity going on to get people to look at what we are doing,” he said.