Elizabeth Touching Lives with Holiday EP

Assistant Editor

Courtesy of Jagster Records

The holiday season is never complete without the soft sounds of melodic music and gorgeous harmonies filling the air. Whether used to put one in the holiday mood while wrapping presents or used for background noise at a seasonal party, December would not be complete without music.

Tulsa mother-daughter duo Elizabeth currently have a Christmas EP available at select stores in the area. Mother Bet and daughter Ashtyn Wallace call themselves ‘Elizabeth’ because it is the middle name they share.

“And because it means “set apart” or “consecrated to God,’” says Bet.

Elizabeth seems like an unlikely pair when comparing their major influences and idols. Ashtyn cites Celine Dion and Christina Aguleria as her favorites for their “fabulous vocals” while Bet grew up idolizing Barbara Streisand.

“My dream was to be able to sound like (Streisand) one day,” says Bet. “In college I was really into folk music, so other idols include Joan Baez and Judy Collins. I also love Whitney Houston’s voice.”

“I have been listening to Celine Dion since I heard her sing a song for the Disney movie “Beauty and the Beast,” says Ashtyn.

From that moment on, she was a singer.

“Music was always around me,” she says. “For as long as I can remember, my mom was always singing around the house and my late father was in the radio business, so there was always talk of music as well. I am told I could sing every word to each song of the musical “Les Miserables” when I was three years old.”

Bet began singing when she was in third grade.

“I grew up listening to opera, marches and beautiful Christmas music,” Bet says. “I sang “O Holy Night” for the first time when I was nine-years-old for the Christmas Eve service at St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral in Oklahoma City.”

The pair didn’t start singing together until two years ago. A tragic event in their lives sparked the beginning their “very unique sound” Bet calls the “DNA blend.”

“It was definitely a God-thing,” says Bet. “After the loss of her father right before her 16th birthday, Ashtyn became very rebellious. When she finally started calming down, we both realized that she was suffering from grief. God gave us a song, “Call on Jesus,” which turned out to be not only healing for us, but it brought us closer than we had been in a very long time.”

Then last December, the women sang “O Holy Night” at a Christmas Mass at Redeemer Covenant Church. Tulsa attorney Jeff Glendening was in attendance and was so moved by the pair’s voices, that he approached the Wallace’s about recording an album.

“His desire was to figure out a way to share our voices with more people than just the ones who get to hear us on a regular basis,” says Bet. “He decided to sponsor a recording project for us.”

This December, Bet and Ashtyn are proudly announcing the release of their first album, “O Holy Night,” which is available at Borders at 81st and Yale and at 21st Street; and all Reasor’s, QuikTrip and Kum-N-Go locations in Tulsa.

This spring, Ashtyn and Bet plan to record a full-length album together. In the mean time, Ashtyn is spending her time in Nashville working on a demo. Bet is a music and voice teacher in Tulsa. The pair also plans to audition for a new show on CMT called “Can You Duet?”

“We hope that the sound of our voices,” says Bet, “and our God-given DNA blend will indeed set us apart from the other singing duos.”

But for Elizabeth, singing isn’t about winning TV contests or hitting number one on music charts. Their goal is much simpler:

“My ultimate goal in music is to touch someone,” says Ashtyn. “Even if it’s only one person. Music has truly touched me and help me through the hard time.”

Updated 12-14-2007

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