By People Staff
November 08, 2006 12:00 PM


“I was by myself on the road for my first two [pop] albums, and it was really lonely,” says Michelle Branch, 23 (right). “I had nobody to share it with.” For her assault on the country charts, Branch brought along a friend: singer-songwriter Jessica Harp. Now as the Wreckers (named for the duo’s past relationship problems), the pair share just about everything: clothes, boots—not to mention a No. 1 song (“Leave the Pieces”) and a CMA nomination. As mom to Owen, her 1-year-old daughter with husband and Wreckers bass player Teddy Landau, Branch relishes her new schedule as a country artist. “It’s a really good balance to play shows on the weekends and spend your week doing laundry and spending time with your kid,” she says. But that doesn’t mean she and Harp don’t appreciate every opportunity to perform. “That’s been the most amazing thing: how many people come to hear us,” says Harp, 24. Though Branch still gets requests to play her old songs, she’s embracing her newfound country fame. “Not knocking what’s happened in the past, but this just feels so much better now.”