West Coast Time

I have written before about my fondness for Michelle Branch’s music [1] and also about the cruel fate of artists whose music is recorded and not released [2], a fate that artists like Badfinger [3] and Chicago [4], among others, have suffered. As it happens, Michelle Branch has suffered that fate at least two times as she has sought unsuccessfully over the course of the last six years to release a full-length follow-up to her platinum-selling album Hotel Paper. Although Michelle Branch has had a successful career both in terms of album sales and singles, and despite working with a label in Maverick which has been far more supportive of her maverick spirit than many labels would be, Michelle Branch has suffered the difficulty of having two albums unreleased even as she continues to release hit singles like “Loud Music”. While she remains part of the label, her music is trapped in the vault, only fitfully and occasionally seeing the light of the day, and not being given the full release and support that an artist of her stature should expect to receive.

In 2008 and 2009, Michelle Branch recorded the tracks for what was supposed to be a full album called Everything Comes And Goes, a return to solo performing after releasing a successful one-off album with The Wreckers along with a hit single with Santana. After recording at least ten of the songs for the album, though, the project was shelved, and released as an EP instead, with three of the four unreleased songs released for free for a short time, with the fourth track reserved for Branch’s follow-up effort, West Coast Time. Alas, here again fate intervened to delay Michelle Branch’s follow-up solo album [5]. By 2011, she had finished recording the tracks to West Coast Time and was happy with how it sounded, but for reasons unknown to her, the album was never released, despite having an Adult Top 40 Top 10 hit in “Loud Music.” Although she played several of the songs from the album, it was also never released, and after waiting a couple of years for the label to release the album in vain, she decided once again to move on, recording more songs in London and Nashville for a pop-rock album that will hopefully be released.

There are some artists who have been unfortunate enough to have one unreleased album, but there are few artists who are unlucky enough to have two unreleased albums, much less in a row. The fact that Michelle Branch is a popular artist with two solo platinum albums, a gold album with a duo, and numerous top 40 hits by herself and in collaboration with others, it is immensely dissatisfying that her attempts at recording and releasing music have met with such difficulties. At the very least, though, we can say for certain that Michelle Branch has some excellent music in the vault, so if she ever gets her masters back from those two unreleased projects, one might be able to see an expanded version of Everything Comes And Goes and a release of West Coast Time, along with whatever else she continues to record in her productive and successful career. Surely, at some point, if only to satisfy her loyal fans with some good music, her record label has to release something, right? In the meantime, we wait.

[1] See, for example:


[2] https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2012/01/04/stones-of-sisyphus/

[3] https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2012/12/09/why-arent-they-in-the-rock-roll-hall-of-fame-badfinger/

[4] https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2011/02/11/why-arent-they-in-the-rock-and-roll-hall-of-fame-chicago/

[5] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michelle_Branch

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in History, Music History, Musings and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to West Coast Time

  1. johngkuhlman says:

    And what a long, depressing wait it is…

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