A small town basketball game was JC Fisher’s public debut as a singer, and it was a slam dunk. A high school junior on the team, Fisher put his church music experience to work and sang “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
“People cheered and students hollered and I thought, wow, they must’ve liked it!” The school choir director was among those impressed. Next year, he got into the choir with other teammates, they formed a quartet and sang at games. “I discovered a new thing that I enjoyed doing, and then I kept up with it.”
What followed: a college scholarship, a bachelor’s in music at Wichita State University, the Puccini festival in Luca, Italy, and several years as a guest entertainer aboard cruise ships (85 ships, by his count) with a home base in Texas.
Fisher is now one third of the tremendously popular The Texas Tenors, the vocal trio whose debut and finalist run on “America’s Got Talent” in 2009 launched them onto stages and TV screens worldwide. The Texas Tenors are the third highest grossing recording artists in the show’s history, and circled back for the spinoff, “America’s Got Talent: The Champions.” Tune in to NBC on Monday, January 28th 8/7C to cheer them on!
“I can’t wait to see how we did,” Fisher teases.
The Texas Tenors will be the featured guests of the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra Feb. 2, with a mix of country and classical, Broadway and gospel, R&B and pop.
Fisher’s cruise ship gig is what first brought him and The Texas Tenor teammate Marcus Collins together. Fisher was hired as the classical singer and Collins, the pop singer, on the big new Celebrity Millennium. “We became like brothers,” Fisher says. “We just had an instant connection. He lost his dad right before that, and my dad and I are real close, and they were a lot alike — both kind of cowboy types and good ol’ boys.”
Fisher met opera singer John Hagen, the third The Texas Tenor, through his voice teacher in Kansas City. “We hit it off and got along really well,” he says; they’d even put together a group, The Gospel Tenors. While Hagen was intrigued with the cruise ship prospect, Fisher thought reality show was the way to go.
“My wife and I … watched ‘America’s Got Talent’ every year. And, I always thought, in the back of my mind, ‘Marcus is such a great singer and entertainer. And, he’s a different voice type than myself. And then, my buddy John (Hagen), he’s a TOTALLY different singer, but we’re all tenors and I thought it would be fun to put a group together and audition for one of these shows.”
Fisher had tried it the year before their debut, sending in a tape with his brother-in-law and voice teacher rounding out a trio. They’d called, but Fisher, then a guest entertainer on a ship in the Baltic region, couldn’t make it to the audition with that crew. “But, in my mind, if I could get Marcus and John together, because they had a certain look and a certain ability onstage, and just the charisma — I thought that group could really take off … and, lo and behold, it did!”
Fisher videotaped the single performance that trio had, at a Miss Kansas USA pageant (his wife and brother-in-law run five state Miss USA pageants), sent it in, along with a couple of different name suggestions. “They called us, like, a week later and said, ‘Hey, we love the idea.’ … ’America’s Got Talent’ picked The Texas Tenors. They liked the ring of it. So, The Texas Tenors was born, thanks to ‘America’s Got Talent.’”
The guys have all lived in Texas, and auditioned for the show in Houston. “That’s how it started.”
In the 10 years since, “We’ve done over 1,300 concerts … and we had no idea we’d even do one concert after that. It’s just been unbelievable what that show’s done for our careers — literally changed our lives.”
The Texas Tenors Concert
2.2.19 / Thalia Mara Hall / 7:30 pm / Jackson, MS
Mississippi Symphony Orchestra Pops Concert Series program includes:
Writings on the Wall
Music of the Night (Phantom of the Opera)
Just the Way You Are
Bring Him Home (Les Misérables)
+ many more!!
Concert sponsored by:
Tickets $21 & up: buy here >