The Big Come Up

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
The Big Come Up
The Black Keys - The Big Come Up.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedMay 14, 2002
RecordedJanuary - March 2002
GenrePunk blues,[1] blues rock[1]
Length54:15 (CD)
33:49 (LP)
ProducerPatrick Carney
The Black Keys chronology
The Big Come Up
Singles from The Big Come Up
  1. "Leavin' Trunk"
    Released: 2003
  2. "She Said, She Said"
    Released: 2003
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4/5 stars[1]
Boston Herald3/4 stars[2]
Robert Christgau(3-star Honorable Mention)[3]
Rolling Stone4/5 stars[4]

The Big Come Up is the debut studio album by the American rock duo The Black Keys, released in May 14, 2002 on Alive Records. The blues-rock duo includes singer and guitarist, Dan Auerbach, and drummer, Patrick Carney. The album was created in Akron, Ohio, also known as the Rubber City.[5] As the two began to grow up, they realized that rubber companies, such as Goodyear, were a dying industry.[6] They knew they were not guaranteed an automatic job by achieving a college degree, so the two dropped out of college to pursue their musical career. They began producing "The Big Come Up" in their basement.[7] Carney and Auerbach recorded the album in Carney's basement, using two microphones bought off of eBay. They recorded their album on an 8-track tape recorder because there was no longer a need for a needle, it did not break or shatter, and it could be played in the car.[8] The record contains thirteen songs. Eight of them are original tracks, with five cover songs. They also released an EP that included covers of the blues song "Leaving' Trunk" and the Beatles' song "She Said, She Said". The song "I'll Be Your Man" was used as the theme song for the HBO series Hung. "I'll Be Your Man" also appeared on the FX series Rescue Me. Alive Records re-presses this album regularly, often several times a year on different colored vinyl or with altered sleeve artwork. These are usually marketed as limited editions.[9] Alive Records had released The Big Come Up on vinyl on at least 14 separate occasions,[10] opening themselves up to criticism, particularly in regard to the marketing term "limited edition".[11]

"240 Years Before Your Time" becomes silent at about 1:39 into the track on the CD version. This silence lasts until 21:41.

According to Nielsen Soundscan, the album sold around 139,000 copies.[12] The two did not make much money off of the album, so they had trouble paying for a tour. Therefore, they raised money by mowing lawns for their landlord. Although the album sold poorly, it gained a cult following and attracted critics. In 2005 music critic Chuck Klosterman singled out The Big Come Up as one of 21 "high-quality albums" from the previous three years.[13] As the two blues-rock singers began to gain attention, they caught the eye of American Independent record label, Fat Possum Records. Fat Possum Records quietly released blues music that drew inspiration from the gritty country blues guitar rhythms and from artists like Junior Kimbrough, one of Carney and Auerbach's leading inspirations.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney except where noted.

CD Version
1."Busted" (originally titled "Skinny Woman") (R.L. Burnside)2:34
2."Do the Rump" (Junior Kimbrough)2:38
3."I'll Be Your Man"2:21
5."The Breaks"3:01
6."Run Me Down"2:27
7."Leavin' Trunk" (Traditional)3:00
8."Heavy Soul"2:09
9."She Said, She Said" (John Lennon, Paul McCartney)2:32
10."Them Eyes"2:23
12."Brooklyn Bound"3:11
13."240 Years Before Your Time"23:20
Vinyl Version: Side A
1."Busted" (originally titled "Skinny Woman") (R.L. Burnside)2:33
2."Do the Rump" (Junior Kimbrough)2:37
3."I'll Be Your Man"2:20
5."The Breaks"3:02
6."Run Me Down"2:27
7."She Said, She Said" (Alternative Version) (John Lennon, Paul McCartney)2:32
Vinyl Version: Side B
1."Heavy Soul" (Alternate Version)2:08
2."Yearnin'" (Alternate Version)1:58
3."No Fun" (Vinyl Exclusive) (The Stooges)2:33
4."Them Eyes"2:23
5."Leavin' Trunk" (Traditional)3:00
6."Brooklyn Bound"3:11
7."240 Years Before Your Time"2:27



  • Patrick Boissel – album cover design
  • Michael Carney – album cover design, photography
  • Dave Schultz – mastering


  1. ^ a b c "The Big Come Up - The Black Keys". Allmusic.
  2. ^ Katz, Larry (1993-02-21). "Son Taylors own sound 'Famous'-ly". Boston Herald. Herald Media, Inc.
  3. ^ "CG: black keys". Robert Christgau.
  4. ^ "Album Reviews : The Black Keys : The Big Come Up". Archived from the original on December 9, 1998. Retrieved November 17, 1998. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  5. ^ Johnson, Susan Allyn (1 January 1990). "How the "Rubber City" Became the "Capital of West Virginia": A Case Study of Early Appalachian Migration". Journal of Appalachian Studies. 6 (1/2): 109–120. JSTOR 41446454.
  6. ^ "Akron Bolsters Police For Rubber Strike Vote By the Associated Press.. The Washington Post (1923-1954) [Washington, D.C] 30 Mar 1935: 4".
  7. ^ "How The BLACK KEYS Rose Without Trace .Thomson, Graeme. The Word (Mar 2002): 54-57".
  8. ^ Kennedy, Dan (1994-08-01). "A Tale of Two CD's". The American Mathematical Monthly. 101 (7): 603–608. doi:10.2307/2974689. JSTOR 2974689.
  9. ^ "Bomp Records".
  10. ^ "The Black Keys - The Big Come Up".
  11. ^ "Re: Different "The Big Come Up" vinyl editions… - The Black Keys Fan Lounge".
  12. ^ Mapes, Jillian (1992-01-06). "Tightened Up: Inside the Black Keys' Rise to Arena-Sized Fame". Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 1992-01-09. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  13. ^ "21st century rock: Chuck Klosterman celebrates twenty-one high-quality albums from the past three years (in no particular order)". Stereogum. Buzz Media. 1995-05-02. Retrieved 1992-06-08. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)