By Daniel Brunty
Winston County Journal
A pair of Winston County teens is looking to make their mark in the music industry soon as they plan the release of their first album.
Double first cousins Abby and Chandler Wells of Noxapater are local Winston
County musicians who have been performing since the tender age of four years old.
Abby, 13, is the daughter of Chasity and Chris Wells of Noxapater, while Chandler, also 13, is the son of Penny and David Wells of Noxapater.
Their album, “Love Wins” is a mix of southern gospel and contemporary Christian. The duo had planned for the release of the CD on August 1 during a scheduled gospel concert at Concord Church in Macon, however, at the time of publication the release date was still to be announced.
As with most musicians, Abby and Chandler often perform at their church, Noxapater Baptist Church, helping craft their love and passion for music. Another musical influence for the duo is very close to home for both teens. Abby’s father, Chris, and Chandler’s father, David, are brothers who are one half of the Wells Quartet.
“Our dads have always sung, because they have their quartet,” Abby said. “Whenever we were four, we went to Ms. Theresa Ingram and we started taking lessons from her. We always sang in church and we started singing together when we were four years old.”
Both teens, who attend Winston Academy, have performed in numerous talent competitions with both earning wins at the Jimmie Rodgers Festival in Meridian as well as dozens of other competitions across the state. Their multi-genre talents including Contemporary Christian and Southern Gospel music, but both said they do sing country music as well.
Faith and somewhat of chance would lead these two exceptional young artists into the opportunity of a lifetime. “It was just like kind of a God thing, really,” Chandler’s mother Penny Wells said. “Shawn Greer, who preaches at Concord Baptist Church in Macon, posted on his Facebook that he was going to have Adam Crabb at his church in concert. Abby and Chandler sing a song that Crabb’s brother Aaron and his wife wrote and perform together. So we went out that night to hear Adam Crabb, and while we were there Shawn joked with Chandler that at the end of the program, he would ask him and Abby to sing.”
When the end of the program arrived, Greer introduced Abbie and Chandler and the Wells Quartet, who were present as well. “That is when Adam said he would like to hear all of them sing,” Penny said. “So I spoke up and asked did they have the song ‘Taken to the Place’ that Adam, his brother and wife sings. Adam said yes. So he got Abby and Chandler to come on stage and he sang with them.”
While Abby and Chandler sang one of their favorite songs with the artist who performs it, neither one would think that this moment would lead them on a possible path to stardom.
“We recorded Chandler and Abby performing and put it on YouTube,” Penny said. “Adam’s dad Gerald Crabb who writes all of the music that the Crabbs perform, owns A & G Entertainment in Hendersonville, TN. Gerald watched the video, and then had his partner, Lisa Ashbury actually called us to let us know Gerald had watched the video and wanted Abbie, Chandler, and the quartet to come and record a CD with A&G Entertainment.”
Abby and Chandler made the trip to Hendersonville to meet with Crabb and Ashbury.
Ashbury requested that they record a CD with track music and use the Abby and Chandler’s vocals.
“I told her that Chandler played the piano as well as sings, and they agreed to let him play the piano on one song on the CD, and the rest would be on music tracks. Their goal is for them to come back and then record a CD of songs that Gerald has written.”
During their time there, Abby and Chandler completed their first album as well receiving the opportunity to audition for national recording companies. “So while they were there, A & G Entertainment was also affiliated with this thing called Nashville 360,” Penny said. “They had Big Machine Records, Red Light Entertainment, The Gaithers Music, and Capitol Records representatives there.
Abby and Chandler were able to audition for them by singing one song, and those representatives critiqued and gave them input.”
With both teens having made these accomplishments at such a young age, they are well on their way to making a success. The duo also hopes their CD will allow someone to get to know Jesus in their lives, and are thankful the opportunities that He has bestowed upon them.
“It was a neat opportunity that they got to go and do it and they were just really grateful to have it,” Penny said.
If you would like to pre-order Abby & Chandler’s CD “Love Wins” for $12 a copy, you may contact the Winston County Journal at 662-773-6241.