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Chris Thile Brings ‘A Prairie Home Companion’ To San Diego

Credit: American Public Media

Above: "A Prairie Home Companion" host Chris Thile in an undated photo.

Chris Thile Brings 'A Prairie Home Companion' To San Diego


Chris Thile, host, "A Prairie Home Companion"


Mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile only has himself to blame for his recent deadline pressures.

After he took over hosting “A Prairie Home Companion” from its founder Garrison Keillor, one of Thile’s major additions was a new song each week, pledging to write an original fully-realized composition for every show. But while he’s often still tinkering until just before broadcast, Thile said he often thinks about Johann Sebastian Bach’s weekly cantatas.

“If that guy could write a cantata every week, well man, I need to be able to write a song,” Thile said.

“A Prairie Home Companion” broadcasts from San Diego on Saturday, Nov. 4, featuring comedian Maria Bamford, blues musician Fantastic Negrito, and Nickel Creek, a bluegrass band Thile founded with Sean and Sara Watkins when they were kids growing up in North County. Thile, who is teaming up with the Watkins for this week’s song, said the deadline brings a sense of relief, too.

“There’s this sense, when you’re working on a record for instance, that you could work on it and keep improving it forever. That the more time you put into it, the better it could get,” Thile said. “And a buddy of mine told me long ago when I was still super green, ‘Don’t worry so much about this. You never finish a record. You abandon it.’”

Thile joins KPBS Midday Edition on Tuesday to discuss his upcoming album collecting last season’s songs of the week and what’s in store for Saturday’s show.

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