Nashville: That’s her country

Times Staff Writer

When Nashville comes a-callin’, Michelle Branch answers. And this time, the 23-year-old member of the country singing duo the Wreckers responded by listing her Calabasas home at close to $3.3 million.

Never mind that the Grammy-winning pop singer-turned-country artist and her husband, Wreckers’ bass player Teddy Landau, 41, have had scant time to enjoy their one-story, 5,300-square-foot home.

They bought the newly built five-bedroom, 5 1/2 -bathroom house in November of last year for about $3 million but were on tour with Branch’s friend and duo partner, 24-year-old Jessica Harp, from February until August. The Wreckers were promoting their No. 1 song, “Leave the Pieces,” from their debut album “Stand Still, Look Pretty.”


Since the end of that tour, Branch has done shows on the weekends and laundry during the week. She spent time with her toddler, lounging with her by the pool and playing games together in the family room, which has a home theater.

Branch likes many things about the home, according to her real estate agents. At the top of the list is its location in a gated community minutes from Malibu and a new shopping center with movie theaters and restaurants. Also on the list is the Mediterranean style of the house with its wood floors, soaring ceilings and courtyard with a fountain and wrought iron gates.

But Calabasas isn’t Nashville, which first beckoned when she was 18, already on the road to promote her first two pop albums.

So, when the country music capital called this time, Branch was finally ready and announced that she and her family would move to Music City USA (a.k.a. Nashville).

Kay Cole of Ewing & Associates, Sotheby’s International Realty, Calabasas, and Renne Wilson of Vision Realty have the listing.

The whodunits were dun here

Bestselling author Nancy Taylor Rosenberg, who wrote the novel “Sullivan’s Justice,” a thriller centering on a Ventura County probation officer, has put her Marina del Rey home on the market at $2.1 million. The house is in a gated community with a harbor view.

The Mediterranean-style house has three bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms in slightly more than 3,200 square feet. The master suite has an office, but there is also a separate office, along with a harbor-view loft.

Rosenberg became a novelist after a 14-year career in law enforcement and draws on her firsthand knowledge of police procedures in her writing.

Gracee Arthur of Sotheby’s International Realty, Malibu, has the listing with Yvonne Roach of the firm’s office in Santa Monica.

Heard it through the airwaves

Radio syndication czar Norm Pattiz, founder and chairman of Westwood One, and his wife, DJ Mary Pattiz, have sold their Beverly Hills-area home for $20 million.

The couple owned the home for 20 years. The property was previously owned by entertainment mogul David Geffen, and actress Marlo Thomas lived there before that.

The updated estate, built in 1940, is on a 5-acre knoll behind gates. There is a main house, detached screening room, pool house, tennis court, pool, sauna and two-story guest house with a kitchen.

The sellers already have a home in Montecito. When they listed their Beverly Hills-area home in May at $27.5 million, Norm Pattiz said they planned to maintain a larger home in Montecito and to keep a pied-a-terre in L.A. near the 60-foot speedboat he keeps in a local marina.

Norm Pattiz founded Westwood One in 1974 as a one-room operation in Westwood, which is how it got its name. The company syndicates radio and TV news programs, including sports and talk shows, and traffic reports.

Acres and acres of film history

A Lake View Terrace ranch once owned by movie mogul Cecil B. DeMille is for sale at $14.8 million.

The 158-acre ranch, in the northern end of the San Fernando Valley, is adjacent to Angeles National Forest and has an equestrian facility.

There are about 200 concrete stalls, multiple arenas -- including one covered and one polo-size -- and miles of riding trails. There is also an architectural-award-winning lodge that is framed by massive beams and pillars more than 28 feet tall.

The centerpiece of the lodge’s great room, which can accommodate hundreds of guests, is a two-sided river-rock fireplace. There is a separate building with a gym and commercial kitchen. The property also has a pool and tennis court.

DeMille bought the land, which he called Paradise Ranch, in 1916. He built cabins and a guesthouse, where he installed a pipe organ so composers could work on their film scores. DeMille spent 10 years, according to film histories, gathering peacock feathers from his ranch for an 18-foot-long train that was part of a dress worn by Hedy Lamarr in the film “Samson and Delilah” (1949).

In the mid-1980s, the Charles Pankow family bought the DeMille property from the mogul’s estate, and the Pankows developed the equestrian facility, including the lodge, designed by architect Douglas Ewing. An additional 185-plus acres of land suitable for residential development also is available to purchase.

Carol Bird of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Malibu has the listing.

Hyena man is spotted in Malibu

Jim Morris, 32, executive movie producer for “Hyenas,” a horror film about predatory creatures that shape-shift from hyenas to humans, bought a condo earlier this year in the Sierra Towers off Sunset Strip, just blocks from his Entertainment Lab offices.

Now he has purchased a newly remodeled, oceanfront home with a pool in Malibu. He bought the five-bedroom, 4,300-square-foot home, on nearly an acre, for close to $2.9 million.

Morris bought the Malibu home because, he said, it was good for his portfolio. He still owns several properties on the East Coast.

Chase Campen, with Re/Max Sunset, represented Morris in buying the Malibu home.

To see previous columns on celebrity real estate transactions, go to