Simply Three
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Simply Three

Chandler, Arizona, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2010 | SELF

Chandler, Arizona, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2010
Band Pop Classical




"Simply Three breaks boundaries of string music with crossover classical pieces"

With heartfelt dedications and an abundance of audience participation, the Simply Three trio provided a new approach to string music.
Simply Three brought high energy and elegance to Baker Center Theatre with modern tunes on Monday night at 7:30 p.m. as a part of the Performing Arts and Concert Series. About 200 people were in the audience, said Andrew Holzaepfel, senior associate director of student activities for the Campus Involvement Center.
The trio, consisting of violinist Glen McDaniel, cellist player Zack Clark and bassist Nicholas Villalobos, took the stage for the first performance on their tour and said the great crowd contributed to the show’s success.
“(This show) set the bar really high,” McDaniel said.
The night kicked off with a rendition of “Animal” by Neon Trees and followed with Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep.”
Simply Three created an atmosphere different from a regular classical recital. Villalobos turned his bass into a drum with pounding, slapping and tapping to create a distinctive beat.
The group soon asked for some audience help with the game “Name that Tune.” Three participants joined the stage to identify pieces from TV, movies and pop culture.
“I was kind of nervous,” said Taylor Crooks, a freshman studying international business and a participant in the game. “I didn’t want to get it wrong because they said it was really easy.”
Simply Three also plays original pieces, Villalobos said to the crowd. The trio took the audience to Paris with “French Bistro,” also dubbed “Chocolate Croissant” by McDaniel, due to his love of chocolate.
The trio later played “Summertime,” which gave each member an opportunity to show off his improv skills. The group encouraged the audience to break away from the tame, quiet show.
The audience immediately let out whoops, hollers and whistles as the group began. As the music progressed the crowd fell quiet until Clark shouted out, “Who is all about that bass?”
The audience answered with laughter and cheers broke that broke the silence, and the song continued with a more engaged crowd.
The show took a change of pace and left the audience to its thoughts when Villalobos dedicated the pieces “Somewhere Only We Know” by Keane and “Chasing Cars” by Snow Patrol to a deceased friend, who was once full of adventure and strived to live life to the max.
“While we play these pieces, I would just like for all of you to think about those you love and hold dear to you heart because you never know when those people will be gone from your life,” Villalobos said during the show.
Before the night concluded, the trio asked if someone knew how to play the “Cup Song.”
DeAnna Cruz, a resident in red high heels, made her way to stage to pick up the single red solo cup sitting on a music stand. She sat on the floor and maintained the beat to the “Cup Song.” Villalobos mimicked the sound by using his bass as a percussion instrument.
The trio received a standing ovation upon the end of the piece, left the stage and soon returned with the encore “Wake Me Up” by Avicii.
“They’re all really talented musicians,” Cruz said at the conclusion of the show. “You could tell by their improv, and it was just really cool to be a part of it too.” - Liz Backo, The Post Athens

"Simply Three: Upcoming Classical Trio Epically Blends Classical Style With Popular Songs"

Classical music has always been a stable genre, but one with a fixed preference. Most of them are well-known violinists such as Joshua Bell and Nicola Benedetti. In the 90s, Vanessa Mae is probably the one violinist associated with innovating violin music by mixing in synthesizers and rock instruments. Then came Lindsey Stirling who took the world by storm with her musical piece, Crystallize, followed by her numerous covers.

Now it seems the next big name in the classical genre, specifically strings, is showing their prominence. This time, its a string trio. Welcome the ensemble, Simply Three, a trio who creates innovative arrangements that blend classical style with today’s popular songs. Through this method of classical entertainment, Simply Three produces cutting-edge recordings, music videos, and live performances that are drawing worldwide attention primarily in the classical genre.

Originating back in 2010, the trio consists cellist Zack Clark, bassist Nicholas Villalobos, and violinist Alex Weill who joined in October 2013. Simply Three had their first self-published album back in 2011, which earned them critical and popular acclaim across the United States. They are even hailed by the Boston Philharmonic.

What separates them from the recent popularity flux of artists who use classical instruments, which includes violinists like Lindsey Stirling, is staying true to the classical music genre. What that means, is they are not a musical act that does pop or rock songs showcasing classical string instruments, but a classical trio that innovates classical music primarily through covering pop or rock songs. Despite the fact Simply Three is covering songs by Adele, Coldplay, One Republic, Michael Jackson, and Imagine Dragons, it still has the classical feel as in you’d expect to hear these type of songs in Carnegie Hall for example. Lindsey Stirling, though very entertaining, does pop songs that so happen to utilize her abilities with a violin. That may become even more prominent now that her manager is Troy Carter, who was also the manager for Lady GaGa, which was included in an article here on The Inquisitr.

Staying true to their sound has paid off that even the Huffington Post has recognized Simply Three’s musical endeavors. One such article has been titled “The Only Christmas Song You’ll Ever Need To Hear”, and if you do hear their song, the article is right. But it is their classical covers of Demons by Imagine Dragons and Happy by Pharrell Williams that stand out. Everything is performed with string instruments (clapping in some covers), no synthesizers or dubstep. It is pure classical music which enforces my prior explanation.

Right now, the music video by Simply Three that is getting a lot of attention is Cold War/Tightrope, which is a mash-up of two songs by Janelle Monae. They also feature Glen and Kellindo, but what makes this music video different from the other Simply Three videos is the inclusion of the EPIK Dance Company. However, the dancing compliments the cover, not overpowering it.

Right now, Simply Three’s songs can be purchased on iTunes, Amazon, and Google Play. The Simply Three store also has more specific items, such as clothing and albums, and their Youtube channel has all their musical videos. Just keep your ears open for this classical trio. Simply Three will probably be the first classical group to bring people to the classical genre, on pure classical sound. - Inquisitr

"Simply Three Wins Best Cover of Ed Sheeran’s ‘Sing’"

After 13 talented cover artists battled it out for the title of‘s Best Cover of Ed Sheeran‘s “Sing,” Simply Three came out as the contest winner!

The musical trifecta – Glen McDaniel, Zack Clark, and Nicholas Villalobos — won the four-round contest by putting an unconventional twist to the pop song. Rather than singing the lyrics, the trio produced a black-and-white fractal music video of themselves covering the single with the arrangement of a cello, bass, and beatboxing.

Simply Three, who collaborated with Kellindo and Glen McDaniel from Janelle Monae‘s band for a mashup of “Cold War” and “Tightrope,” has also incorporated their classic style on other pop-friendly tracks including Pharrell‘s “Happy,” Imagine Dragons‘ “Demons,” and Adele‘s “Rolling in the Deep.”

Their debut EP Two Worlds Collide is available for download on iTunes now. - - Marc Inocencio

"Classical trio Simply Three transformed Imagine Dragons' "Demons" with their recent cover of the track."

Classical trio Simply Three transformed Imagine Dragons' "Demons" with their recent cover of the track. - Rolling Stone

"Simply Three sets Phoenix Icehouse afire with music"

Simply Three was one of two featured instrumental trios at Phoenix's funky and fabulous Icehouse playing last night's Downtown Chamber Series concert. Before the show, the group's petite violinist, New Yorker Alex Weill took time to chat with Examiner about the chemistry igniting this red hot Phoenix-founded trio.

"The great reception our live performances get is really awesome," Weill said about playing with Simply Three. For a musician who also plays with household names like Justin Timberlake, Alicia Keys, Electric Light Orchestra and Jay Z, her Phoenix trio's ovations hold a warm spot in her heart.

"The crowd gets to grooving and jamming. They feed off of our energy," she commented. The Icehouse crowd, fittingly, cheered when she leapt off the stage during one number, and again when the guys, Zack Clark and Nick Villalobos, spun their cello and bass in a flourish later in the same song.

"We're debuting a little movement and choreography at this concert. It adds some great visual effects and really amps up the show," said Weill.

The three classically trained and ridiculously accomplished musicians have bios that read like they should be well into adulthood, when instead, they're college-kid-young. Though distinguished, worldly terms like Interlochen, Tanglewood, Oberlin, Yale and Vanderbilt spark their resumes, Simply Three arranges and performs primarily pop tunes, which spread across the internet like wildfire. The mastery of skill, depth and breadth in their renditions cause bands they cover, like OneRepublic and Imagine Dragons to promote the trio's genre-hopping videos.

With the infectious energy Weill had cited, last night's audience was participation prone, and especially vocal during a smoldering, precious-metal-forged, original jazz arrangement of 'Summertime' from Porgy and Bess.

The concert was all the more fiery for the very proper classical violin-viola-flute trio who interpreted beautifully pieces by Beethoven and Handel in lovely contrast to Simply Three. Viviana Cumplido, who is also the Phoenix Symphony's Principal Flute, owns her instrument like few flutists ever have. Melting into the fluid phrases of her Classical Trio's Max Reger Serenade was a confection to be savored.

A fanning, hats off goes to Mark Dix and the Downtown Chamber Series. Keep your ears open for their upcoming concerts.

"There's usually a LOT of hard work and rehearsing and personal interaction to struggle through when chamber groups get together and try to find their own unique sound," mused Weill as the conversation wound down. "But working with these two [Clark & Villalobos]....from technique, to style, to personality, it's been just easy."

They are dynamic personalities. They are innovative performers. They are wildly talented musicians. Weill came so close to saying it herself. They are Simply Three. - Examiner

"LOVE this counting stars cover! All strings!!"

LOVE this counting stars cover! All strings!! - OneRepublic

"I LOVE this! String remix of Cold War/Tightrope. What an HoNoR."

I LOVE this! String remix of Cold War/Tightrope. What an HoNoR. - Janelle Monáe

"Tempe's Simply Three Cover Janelle Monáe With the Help of Her Backing Musicians"

If you have neither heard nor heard of Simply Three, you really ought to start paying attention, or, at the very least, give them a listen. Thousands of others certainly have, as the Tempe-based classical crossover trio, comprised of three local string musicians, has gotten a lot of praise in recent months for their fantastic instrumental versions of well-known pop and rock songs.
In the last year alone, Simply Three has earned a ton of attention (and hundreds of thousands if YouTube views) from covering such hitmakers as OneRepublic, Pharrell Williams, and Imagine Dragons, each time transposing pop bombast into joyous string music in artful fashion.

The trio's latest release, a mashup cover of Janelle Monáe's "Cold War" and "Tightrope" that was recently released, is certainly no exception. And, in an interesting twist, the song features two of Monáe's backup musicians.

Guitarist Kellindo and violin player Glen McDaniel, both of whom have performed with the R&B/soul singer in recent years, collaborated with the Simply Three's lineup of violinist Alex Weill, cellist Zack Clark, and upright bassist Nicholas Villalobos to create the song.

"We have always admired Janelle Monáe and her music, and when we had the chance to collaborate with two musicians in her band, we ABSOLUTELY could not say no!" Simply Three stated on the YouTube page for the song's music video. And according to press release from trio regarding the project, Kellindo and Glen McDaniel wanted to participate in the project in hopes of surprising Monáe.

We're pretty sure she'll be pleased with both the song (which features both Kellindo's riffs and McDaniel's bow-work), as well as its music video, which debuted last week on YouTube and is a feast of art, sound, and dance.

Directed by Clark, Villalobos, and local filmmaker Ovi Balc, it stars the musicians of Simply Three, as well as Kellindo and McDaniel, who both flew to Phoenix to participate in the making of the video. Several dancers from local "street fusion" troupe EPIK Dance Company are also prominently featured, including its artistic directors Sarah "Saza" Dimmick and Luis "Weezy" Egurrola.

The video was shot over the course of two days in mid-April at Scottsdale nightclub Smashboxx and a Tempe photography studio. Scenes of the musicians and dancers performing in front of a stark white background while dressed in tuxedos (an homage to Monáe's fashion sense) alternates with footage of everyone wearing glowing neon black light outfits, which were created by local fashion designed Kelsey Albright, in a dark room.

It's a juxtaposition of black and white with colors and light that Dimmick says Simply Three envisioned when creating the project. She and Egurrola, who previously worked with the trio for a live performance of a mashup of Coldplay's "Fix You/Clocks" at this year's Governor's Arts Awards, came up with the choreography for the video, which she thinks turned out great.

"We were all sold on the vision and worked together really well," Dimmick says. "This is the second time we have collaborated with Simply Three, and adding Glen and Kellindo to the equation made it even more exciting."

Clark, who also edited the video, was also pleased with the end result.

"I think the video is really unique and pushes limits for classical crossover groups and YouTube musicians," he stated on Reddit. - Phoenix New Times

"Simply Three Breezes On a Tightrope When It Comes To Music Videos"

We got to hand it to string trio Simply Three. They make better music videos than most classical label funded artists. Heck they make better videos than most artist from bigger pop labels. Heck they make videos that are actually more artsy to watch than even the most abstract indie artists.

Unlike most pop-interpretive string trios that actually bring a level of suckitude to the songs they cover, Simply Three brings stylish elements of their flair and keep the full fun factor that made the song great in the first place.

Honestly hearing that a string group would cover a great track like Janelle Monáe’s “Tightrope” and its companion piece “Cold War,” somewhat makes us cringe knowing how easy they can blunder it up and lose the emotive touch that made Monáe’s 2010 acclaimed songs so funky. Let alone that the two pieces are not exactly the most obvious tracks to cover adds a whole new level of appreciation for Simply Three.

Flashy and fluid but with dashes of nonchalant breeziness not only lets Simply Three’s cover of Monáe’s songs keep their vibrance and depth, but also exudes the added layers of color that the group generally adds.

The video directed by actual members Zack Clark and Nicholas Villalobos alongside Ovi Balc, actually shows how good a classically-trained group’s music video can be when they are just themselves. (See the results of when they try the exact opposite here).

Nothing over the top – just a the right level of visualizing what a string cover could be like when you take out the stigmas and high-brow perception most adhere to.

There’s no “too cool for school” or “wannabe” hardass effort here. Its simply just a straightforward perfect example for most directors and cinematographers to follow when trying to visual the sonic identity of young classical musicians. Yet in comparison to even the biggest selling cross-over classical acts such as Lindsey Stirling or 2Cellos, Simply Three’s latest video is by far the year’s most visually appealing performance video so far.

Simply Three’s cover of Janelle Monáe’s “Cold War / Tightrope” is available for download now. - Alto Riot

"Simply Three Covers OneRepublic And It's Simply Perfect"

OneRepublic is not an easy band to emulate, but Simply Three puts their best string forward to do the group justice.

The trio of string musicians, who blew us away with their rendition of "The Christmas Song" just over a month ago, is back and this time they're taking on OneRepublic's Counting Stars.

Simply Three consists of Alex Weill on the violin, Nicholas Villalobos on the bass and Zack Clark on the cello.

Check out the video above to catch this unique group in action. - The Huffington Post

"Imagine Dragons' 'Demons' Turned Into A Classical Piece Is The Most Beautiful Version You'll Hear"

With songs like the dubstep-influenced "Radioactive" dominating the airwaves, you might not expect an Imagine Dragons cover to consist simply of three strings: a violin, a cello, and a double bass.

Classical trio Simply Three took that challenge head on with their recent cover of Imagine Dragons' "Demons," and it's incredible how the same song can take on such a different sound under their bows.

This passionate version is "simply" tops.

Love Simply Three? Then check out their amazing version of "The Christmas Song," too! - The Huffington Post

"Good Things Come in Three"

Classical cover artists are a dime a dozen these days but the trio of Simply Three have the brightest outlook with legitimate artistic cred out of anything we’ve seen in the field for quite some time. Releasing their newest EP Two Worlds Collide this week, the collection of violinist Alex Weill, cellist Zack Clark, and bassist Nicholas Villalobos have quietly found their groove while getting the right mix between pop rock and classical just right.

What makes Simply Three irresistible from most of the pop-classical arrangement vagabonds out there is their more casual, lighthearted approach to music with less of the tacky, cheese factor that generally taints the pack. Despite only forming in 2011, the trio have just hit the right level of maturity – their performance technique is soft and airy but not “wimpy.”

True, they perform the most overplayed songs of the moment from Pharrell’s “Happy” to Imagine Dragons’ “Demons” but their renditions are refreshing without losing the appeal of the originals. Even in their infancy years of development Simply Three shows a knack for getting the right pacing for doing classical arrangements of pop songs that nails the pacing but still protrudes a vintage string sound that separates them. Nothing seems forced. Nothing seems fake. Nothing gimmicky. Simply Three hides no qualms of maintaining the original context of the songs they cover but they do it with a natural, youthful spunk.

It will be interesting to see how Simply Three progresses with contemporary works but given their technical skill, they’d be in the right hands.

Two Worlds Collide is available now on iTunes. - Alto Riot

"Winter wakening with new Simply Three music video"

The eagerly-awaited new video, a cover of Avicii's 'Wake Me Up,' from Classical crossover trio Simply Three (S3) shook the world from slumber this morning. Welcoming a new band member and heralding the group's new Patreon campaign, the cut could well be snatched up by Arizona Tourism as a
perfect combination of artistic excellence and scenic wonders the state offers. The guys kindly offered a few insights to Examiner in an interview today that
make the new recording all the richer.
Pounding percussive fist thumps by Nick Villalobos on his trusty upright bass open the tune after the camera has
zoomed from a gorgeous aerial view of the trio tromping onto Saguaro Lake's beach. Next, against a backdrop of
tall green reeds, the pure strains of melody from S3's new violinist Glen McDaniel dance out across the water.
"The transition with Glen has been great," said Zack Clark, the band's ever exuberant cellist. "We've focused on
getting our live shows to an even higher level. Having performed dozens of huge shows with [pop star] Janelle
Monae, Glen has offered unparalleled insights and expertise... From programming, song choices and transitions,
to lighting ideas and necessary gear," Clark noted McDaniel has helped transform the group's entire live
production experience.
When Villalobos takes his turn on the melody in the video, it's hard to believe that kind of smoking embellishment
can rumble out of a bass's deep cavity. The number's excited energy doesn't lift just the spirits of listeners, either.
It seems only natural that Clark has ditched a traditional cellist's chair and bounces with his stand up cello on the
lakeshore alongside Villalobos as he shreds up the melody when it passes to him.
Along with sporting the trio's usual polished classical technique in pop clothing, this new recording features some
sophisticated studio sounds as well.
"We want to add even more production qualities to our tracks," said Villalobos about the style. "We made a new
friend in Dan Parker [Valor Studio], who is a wizard when it comes to adding synth sounds and drum samples to a
track. We want to explore more unique sounds coupled with the beautiful acoustic sounds of our instruments."
Showcasing a golden desert-winter scene, the music and video frames simultaneously jettison the trio to a remarkable climax punctuated by a pregnant
pause in the sound. Atop a cliff overlooking the water, the guys have lost their spiffy sport jackets. As the music soars from their strings out over the lake, it
offers a visual running leap straight off the mountain ledge. A liberating awakening is born, the kind of unforgettable moment that can be re-lived behind
our eyelids. We fly right along with the music.
McDaniel recalled that the creation of that scene in the video surprised them all. "We suddenly heard Nick's echoey voice coming from somewhere saying,
'This would be a great spot!' We look around and spot him at the top of one of the surrounding cliffs. Of course, then we had to haul the bass up (and down)
the side of this mountain. "
"The view was spectacular and we knew that it was going to provide us with the breathtaking shots we needed to make the music video pop," said
Clark agreed, adding, "It's what I love about working with Nick and Glen; we always push ourselves, and we have fun doing it."
As S3 chatted about what their future holds, it was somehow wrapped up in that flying leap kind of aura. Fans can look forward to lots of new, original
music and increased live performances. The band is excited, too, about reworking a new business model that includes an online Patreon funding
A winter Monday morning never had it so good. It's like the central lyric in 'Wake Me Up' was floating about, in the music video and in the conversation.
'Guided by a beating heart.... All this time I was finding myself, and I didn't know I was lost' - Jennifer Haaland - Examiner


The Portland Symphony Orchestra’s “Magic of Christmas” series, Dec. 12 to 21, has something for everyone. Artistic director Robert Moody has emphasized entertainment value in the rapid-paced program and largely succeeded. On opening night, the entertainment seemed in surround-sound, with a new act popping up every few minutes, all around Merrill Auditorium.

The festivities opened with the full orchestra in holiday garb playing “Rocket Sleigh.” As soon as the applause died down the spotlight switched to Inanna, Sisters in Rhythm, in the lower right-hand corner of the hall, playing Soboninko from the Malinke people of Guinea. The driving polyrhythms of the piece, on native percussion instruments, and the call-and-response singing, were as exciting as an Inanna performance usually is.

They were followed almost instantaneously by the Flukes in the upper right balcony, playing a Hawaiian Christmas song, Mele Kalikimaka. Flukes stands for Falmouth Library Ukulele Ensemble, and they are really good at what they do. The performance was charming.

Next up was the string trio, Simply Three, from the left balcony, playing “Happy” on violin, viola and bass. The well-known trio serves up popular music with a classical bent, including embellishments that seem halfway between a thematic variation and a riff.

Then it was organist Ray Cornils’ turn, on the newly renovated Kotzschmar Organ, the console keyboards in full view, with variations on “Here We Come a Wassailing” and “Deck the Halls.”

I have always thought that “Good King Wenceslas,” one of my favorite carols, would make a good set of variations suited to the progress of the story, and here it was, beautifully rendered by the orchestra’s viola section. Later on, they performed a moving arrangement of “Lo, How a Rose E’re Blooming.”

Simply Three returned twice more, in variations on “Jingle Bells,” with PSO concertmaster Charles Dimmick, and solo in “God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen.” both highly imaginative and well played.

Two orchestral selections from “The Nutcracker,” “In the Christmas Tree,” and “Mother Ginger,” were danced to by members of the Maine State Ballet, the first as a graceful and romantic pas de deux and the second by the Portland Sea Dogs mascot Slugger, in full costume. Both were a welcome change from the more often-heard “Nutcracker” selections.

The second, more traditional part of the program, after intermission, was more of a mixed bag, with some outstanding moments, such as the “Hallelujah” from “Messiah” sung by the Magic of Christmas Chorus with full orchestra, the trademark “Sleighride,” and an energetic holiday carol sing-along led by assistant conductor Norman Huynh.

The opening “Carol of the Bells” with Simply Three, the chorus and orchestra, was well thought out, almost like a concerto grosso with the trio as the concertino (smaller group of instruments performing the role of soloist). but the forces could have been better balanced.

I also enjoyed the chorus in “Sure on this Shining Night,” with words by James Agee, and a rousing version of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” as a finale.

WHERE: Merrill Auditorium, Portland
“Magic of Christmas” continues through Dec. 21 at Merrill Auditorium. - Maine Today

"Simply Three gets complex with new 'Take Me to Church' video"

When Classical Crossover king Simply Three released their new video cover of Hozier's "Take Me to Church" this week they ventured into complicated social themes and their most sophisticated videography production yet. The effect of fire and destruction on the barren desert is chilling.

Arizona-based Simply Three, comprised of cellist Zack Clark, violinist Glen McDaniel and bassist Nick Villalobos, expert classical musicians all, have a track record of innovative cover videos that rack up hundreds of thousands of views routinely. Five days into this week, their new video recording had exceeded 80,000 views.

In a break from their usual beautiful and upbeat creations, Simply Three's "Take Me to Church" invokes feelings that follow Hozier's own dark themes. Based on an ironic idea of seeking salvation only to met by judgmental persecution, the Simply Three guys filmed on a desolate stretch of desert near Casa Grande, Arizona.

Shattered violin shards appear before the music begins. Played upon beaten, battered instruments by men with contemplative, hopeless expressions, the camera focuses on all that is broken and scarred.

Though the dejected trio and their instruments are filthy, downtrodden and falling apart, the music itself is otherworldly in the angst and pain it communicates. McDaniel's violin line truly cries for attention, sobbing while Villalobos' bass throbs. The tension in the music is further emphasized by syncopated melody and rends even more jaggedly at the point when Clark's cello wrenches fighting triplets against an even rhythm .

At the musical climax, footage of each musician in turn smashing and stomping his instrument in the cruelest of blows. Moods pensive and sad explode, literally, into fiery destructive anger.

Rolling the film backwards so that the shards become whole begins a sickening cycle when it's the catalyst for repeated destruction that we watch over and over in ever closer detail to intimate degree. And the kicker is, the destruction isn't something that's done to Simply Three, like happens to the characters in Hozier's video. The heartbreaking truth here is that these guys shatter and torch their own music.

It's some heavy, beautiful stuff. A new music video so moving that listeners can't get enough ....featuring a world so destructive that Simply Three can no longer bear to offer music to it. In a rage of fire and shattered instruments blazing, the three exhausted young men, abandon their sources joy.

Simply dejected and beaten, the three leave us to contemplate a bleak world devoid of music. - Examiner


Still working on that hot first release.



The young trio of Glen McDaniel, Zack Clark, and Nicholas Villalobos, together known as Simply Three, has garnered stirring success with their unique transformation of string music. With old school training but a new school sound, Simply Three is re-shaping convention with its original works and innovative arrangements that blend classical style with popular songs of today. Since its inception in 2010, the group has been praised as “having what it takes” (Boston Philharmonic) for its ability to impress audiences with a multitude of genres, being equally at home with performing works by composers such as Puccini and Gershwin to artists like Adele,
Coldplay, and Michael Jackson. 

Simply Three continues to capture the true essence of the classical crossover field by combing their technical virtuosity and captivating musicality with an openness to genre hopping. With an ever-growing online popularity, they are creating a renewed excitement for instrumental music through inventive music videos that have caught the attention of millions of YouTubers across the globe as well as features and highlights from such renowned publications as The Huffington Post and Rolling Stone. Their rendition of “The Christmas Song” has been described by William Goodman, senior editor of The Huffington Post, as “the only ‘Christmas Song’ you’ll ever need to hear,” and their take on Imagine Dragons’ “Demons” has been hailed as “the most beautiful version yet.” Simply Three’s masterful arrangements continue to find high esteem, most recently receiving personal admiration from artists they have covered. Their version of OneRepublic’s “Counting Stars” was met with acclamation from the band itself, stating, “LOVE this ‘Counting Stars’ cover! All strings!!” while R&B sensation Janelle Monáe made the group’s colorful mash-up video of her hit singles “Cold War” and “Tightrope” a personal feature on her webpage, proclaiming the project “an honor.”

Since the release of their debut EP, Two Worlds Collide, Simply Three has collaborated with some of the world’s most creative musicians, including artists such as guitarist Kellindo Parker (Janelle Monáe) and beatboxer Jeff Smith (M-Pact). Their approach to innovation extends beyond the musical world, and with a unique pairing with EPIK Dance Company, Simply Three continues to look beyond the scope of the possible in order to create a new, fresh genesis for the arts.

Band Members