The Wreckers were officially a band for only two brief years, but fans freaked out when the country-pop duo teased a reunion in late 2020. Clearly, their debut — and, thus far, only — album left a mark.
Stand Still, Look Pretty, the Wreckers’ first full-length project, arrived on May 23, 2006 — 17 years ago today. The band of Michelle Branch and Jessica Harp had formed one year prior, when the pop-rock singer-songwriter known for early 2000s hits including “Everywhere” and “Goodbye to You” and her longtime friend and backup singer decided to meld their styles.
The Wreckers’ first-released song, “The Good Kind,” found an audience on the teen-focused TV drama One Tree Hill. The duo performed the track, originally recorded by Harp solo, on the show in early 2005, and found an audience as a brand-new act as part of a One Tree Hill-branded tour. Their first official single, however, was “Leave the Pieces,” released in February of 2006.
“Leave the Pieces,” a co-write between Billy Austin and Jennifer Hanson, hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart that September — the same month in which Stand Still, Look Pretty earned a gold certification from the RIAA. Upon its release, the record landed in the Top 5 (No. 4) on the country albums chart and in the Top 15 (No. 14) on the all-genre Billboard 200 albums chart.
Branch and Harp co-wrote six of the 12 songs on Stand Still, Look Pretty, including one with Wayne Kirkpatrick and Josh Leo (“My, Oh My”) and another with Greg Wells (“Lay Me Down). Harp penned two songs solo (“Tennessee” and “Cigarettes”), while Branch wrote one alone (“Rain”) and another with John Leventhal (“Hard to Love You”). “One More Girl” is a Patty Griffin cover.
“Leave the Pieces” earned the Wreckers a Grammy Awards nomination, and as a duo, they received nominations at both the ACM and CMA Awards in 2006 and 2007 (plus one more at the CMA Awards in 2008). Following the success of “Leave the Pieces,” the released “My, Oh My” (a Top 10) and “Tennessee” (a Top 40).
The Wreckers had a fourth single planned, but disbanded before it could be released, as both Branch and Harp wanted to focus on their solo careers. Branch’s next project, the Everything Comes and Goes EP, arrived in 2010, while Harp earned a Top 30 country single with 2009’s “Boy Like Me.”
The Wreckers would not be heard from again until 2017, when Branch brought Harp onstage during a Hopeless Romantic Tour stop in Nashville. They went silent again until late 2020, when newly created Wreckers Twitter and Instagram accounts popped up online.
“2020 doesn’t deserve this. See you in 2021,” proclaimed a post on both accounts. Most recently, the pair shared a fan-filmed clip from a 2007 concert that showed The Wreckers covering The Judds’ “Love Is Alive” as a tribute to Naomi Judd following her death on April 30, 2022.