3 Songs for People Who Say They Don’t Like The Black Keys

The Akron, Ohio-born blues-rock duo known as The Black Keys have been making music together since 2001. Comprised of lead singer Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney, the group has grown steadily over the past two-plus decades to become one of the biggest bands in the world thanks to their riffs, distorted vocals and catchy tracks.

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But that doesn’t mean everyone, including fellow blues rocker Jack White, loves the band. Indeed, The Black Keys, like just about every other group, has their share of haters—it’s only natural. But that’s why we wanted to put together this trio of tunes. Three songs that can be shown to any person who doesn’t love the band to perhaps help them to change their minds.

[RELATED: The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach Talks Akron, Ohio, School Buses, and the Band’s New LP ‘Dropout Boogie’]

“Ten Cent Pistol” from Brothers (2010)

From the band’s 2010 album Brothers, this song written by the band and co-produced by the accomplished Danger Mouse hearkens back to classic blues songs where love, deceit and vengeful violence play key roles. The song could easily be a cover track from a song from the 1920s but it’s not, it’s an original from the band that does so well with these traditional blues-rock themes. On the song, lead singer Dan Auerbach sings,

Well he ran around
Late at night
Holding hands
Making light
Of everything that came before
But there she was behind the door

She hit them with her ten cent pistol
Because they ruined her name
Well she hit them with her ten cent pistol
And they’ve never been the same

“Set You Free” from Thickfreakness (2003)

This song comes from the band’s sophomore album Thickfreakness, an album that demonstrated the group’s roots and love of the genre they participate in. It was also an album released before they were mega-stars and so fans can get a chance to see their dynamic and style pre-fame. In fact, the track was recorded in drummer Patrick Carney’s basement. This track also helped break the band as it was used both in a Nissan commercial and in the hit film School of Rock. On the exultant offering, Auerbach sings,

You hold on to love that’s gone
Run a mile to see him smile
But you don’t know he’s door to door
Playin’ you for the fool

Let him go, walk out your door
And come to me
I’m gonna set you free

Now you look and there you go back to him, he’s gonna do you in
Tear you down and run you around
Treat you wrong and then he’s gone

“All You Ever Wanted” from Attack & Release (2008)

From the band’s 2008 album Attack & Release, their first produced by Danger Mouse, this song is built on fat bass lines, jangly acoustic guitars and the group’s knack for blues vibes. It also features a triumphant climax with organs that just makes the soul feel blissful. The song opens the album and is the perfect table-setter. On it, Auerbach sings, as if a miracle in his throat,

Take a step before running
Take a breath now before you die
When you work the streets, darlin’
Make sure your sneaker laces they get tied

I’ll be your black bird darlin’
Hanging on your telephone wire
Flap my wings, oh yeah
And set your heart to fly

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Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

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