The Black Keys are my favorite big-time rock and roll band of the 21st century. They are a 2-man band from Akron, Ohio. Dan Auerbach plays guitar and Patrick Carney plays the drums. So we could say they are a guitar/drums duo, although they have added members for their tours in later years, and added more instruments on their later records. As a duo, they showed the total validity of this concept, also illustrated by The White Stripes, Flat Duo Jets, The Hosty Duo (Norman, Oklahoma), and many others.
Their earlier records show that they totally absorbed the "Fat Possum sound", rockin' minimalist delta blues as defined by Junior Kimbrough and R.L. Burnside. They have continuously evolved their sound into original alternative rock, with many songs capable of being big radio hits (but of course the radio has been dead for decades). While they may have changed their sound, they retain total coolness as they release record after record, gaining in popularity continuously.
I got to see them a couple of times at the Green Door in OKC, around 2004, when the shows were small and you could get in for $5. Saw them again at the Bricktown Ballroom in OKC 12/07/2006. They are coming to Tulsa in April of 2012 - good to see them continuing to tour, and remembering to include Oklahoma. I see they are touring Europe in January of 2012, and sold out 3 shows in a row in London.
I recommend all of their records, with the earliest being my most favorite. They have done lots of side projects - Blakroc is a collaboration with rappers, Auerbach did a solo record, Carney is in a band called Drummer. Most of their records are available on vinyl as well as CD. Some of the vinyl LPs have alternate tracks or extra tracks. All these details can be sorted out at Wikipedia.
The Big Come Up (05/20/2002) Alive Records
The first studio release from the Black Keys. Totally awesome.
The second studio release.
This is an EP with 4 songs:
1. The Moan - based on Poor Boy a Long Way From Home. SEARING
2. Heavy Soul (alternate version of song from The Big Come Up)
3. No Fun (cover of Stooges song)
4. Have Love Will Travel (alternate version of Sonics cover from Thickfreakness)
The third full-length studio release.
This is a 6-song EP of songs by Junior Kimbrough. Super cool. And check out some Junior Kimbrough records - the spookiest blues ever.
Fourth full-length studio release. Starting to move away from the Fat Possum sound and more into indie pop-rock.
Fifth full-length studio release.
Sixth full-length studio release. Very strong record.
Seventh full-length studio release. They have now taken over the world.
Auerbach's solo record. 14 songs.
Feel Good Together - Drummer (09/29/2009) Audio Eagle Records
Carney started this band with a bunch of other drummers.
This is a collaboration of The Black Keys with various rappers. Very interesting record. Super cool!
From a show at The Metro Theatre, Sydney Australia, March 18, 2005. 65 minutes, 17 songs.
From April 4, 2008 show at the Crystal Ballroom in Portland, Oregon. 64 minutes, 17 songs.
Official Website - TheBlackKeys.com
The Black Keys Fan Lounge - theblackkeysfanlounge.com
Wikipedia (Main Article): en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Black_Keys
Wikipedia (Discography): en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Black_Keys_discography
Wikipedia (Dan Auerbach): en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dan_Auerbach
Wikipedia (Patrick Carney): en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patrick_Carney
Black Keys Page at Fat Possum Records: www.fatpossum.com/artists/the-black-keys
Fat Possum Records Home Page: www.fatpossum.com
Black Keys Page at Alive Records: www.alive-totalenergy.com/x/?page_id=392
Alive Records Main Page: www.alive-totalenergy.com/
Black Keys Page at Nonesuch Records: www.nonesuch.com/artists/the-black-keys
Nonesuch Records Main Page: www.nonesuch.com/
Revised 01/25/12 (I had let this page lapse from 2003 until 2012)
All Links checked and fixed 01/25/2012
First posted 12/23/03