Thile began recording his first solo album in 1993, with most songs of his own composition. After two more solo albums of all original material, he teamed with mandolin master Mike Marshall for a stunning album of duets called Into the Cauldron, which included forays into jazz, world music, and Bach. In 2004 Chris released Deceiver, a departure from his earlier work which contained a variety of pop/rock/folk influenced vocal numbers. In September 2006, he released a new album entitled How to Grow a Woman from the Ground, which consisted of an extensive bluegrass band, and more traditional tracks than his previous album.
In addition, an announcement was made on the website of Nickel Creek that Thile and his band-mates would be taking an extended hiatus from the band at the end of 2007. He is currently touring with the How to Grow a Band, consisting of members Greg Garrison on bass, Noam Pikelny on banjo, Gabe Witcher on fiddle, and Bryan Sutton on guitar. With the exception of Bryan Sutton, this is the same group of musicians that appear on How to Grow a Woman from the Ground; Chris Eldridge is the guitarist on the album. In 2007 at Carnegie Hall the original quintet from How to Grow a Woman From the Ground performed many songs off of the album and debuted a four movement suite entitled "The Blind Leaving the Blind" under the name of Tensions Mountain Boys. The band changed their name to the Punch Brothers. bluegrass folk mandolin acoustic singer-songwriter