Spoiler alert: The Punch Brothers came to the Tiny Desk on Chris Thile's birthday. We made him a cake and gave him an NPR surprise! This wasn't the first time the brilliant mandolinist had brought a project to my desk, it was his fourth. The last time was with his longtime band Nickel Creek — and his new braces. So the cake we presented here was inscribed "Brace Yourself Chris Happy Birthday." He blew out the candles and then, along with this versatile and talented group, rocked our world.
Punch Brothers mixes bluegrass, pop and classical music. It's a tough combination to imagine, and an even harder one to make work, but this band of Thile, violinist Gabe Witcher, banjoist Noam Pikelny, guitarist Chris Eldridge and bassist Paul Kowert makes the unimaginable contagious and fun. They push boundaries and make music like no one else.
- "My Oh My"
- "Boll Weevil"
Producers: Bob Boilen, Maggie Starbard; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; Videographers: Morgan McCloy, Nick Michael, Maggie Starbard; Assistant Producer: Carlos Waters; photo by Carlos Waters/NPR