LISTEN: Nickel Creek Debuts “Holding Pattern”

Nickel Creek’s new song, “Holding Pattern,” written by mandolinist Chris Thile, violinist Sara Watkins and guitarist Sean Watkins, is debuting today. Watch the band perform the song above.
Reflecting on the song, the band shares, “The circular contrapuntal guitar figures are reminiscent of a holding pattern, a term often invoked during the early stages of the pandemic. Here’s to true love keeping us airborne when it isn’t safe to land.”

“Holding Pattern” is the second track unveiled from Nickel Creek’s new album, Celebrants, which will be released March 24 via Thirty Tigers. Their fifth studio album and first new release in nine years, Celebrants marks a long-awaited return for the beloved trio and explores the inherent dynamics of human connection. Across the 18 tracks, the group addresses love, friendship and time with lyrics both poetic and plain-spoken, as they see bridges built, crossed, burned and rebuilt. Recorded at Nashville’s RCA Studio A, the album was produced by longtime collaborator Eric Valentine and features Mike Elizondo on bass.

In celebration of the new music, Nickel Creek will return to the road this spring with their first headline tour since 2014. Upcoming stops include Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium on April 27, 28 and 29. All three shows are sold out.

Of the project, the band reflects, “This is a record about embracing the friction inherent in real human connection. We begin the record yearning for and pursuing harmonious connection. We end the record having realized that truly harmonious connection can only be achieved through the dissonance that we’ve spent our entire adult lives trying to avoid.”

About Jerry Holthouse

Music editor for Jerry Holthouse is a content writer, songwriter and a graphic designer. He owns and runs Holthouse Creative, a full service creative agency. He is an avid outdoorsman and a lover of everything music. You can contact him at

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