The Dark Keys

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The Dark Keys
Branford Marsalis The Dark Keys.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 1996
RecordedJuly & August 1996
LabelSony Music
ProducerDelfeayo Marsalis
Branford Marsalis chronology
Loved Ones
The Dark Keys
Music Evolution
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic3/5 stars[1]
Entertainment WeeklyA-[2]
The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings3.5/4 stars[3]

The Dark Keys is a jazz trio album by the Branford Marsalis Trio, featuring Branford Marsalis, Reginald Veal, and Jeff "Tain" Watts, with guest appearances from Kenny Garrett and Joe Lovano. Recorded July 31 to August 2, 1996 in the Tarrytown Music Hall in Tarrytown, New York, the album reached Number 9 on the Billboard Top Jazz Albums chart.[1]


In his AllMusic review, Leo Stanley says the performance "pushes at the borders of post-bop, adding elements of hip-hop and rock & roll, making for an adventurous and exciting listen."[1] Steve Futterman concurred in his Entertainment Weekly review, saying the album shows Marsalis "(returning) to contender status."[2] Writing in 2009 in the New York Times, Ben Ratliff calls the album one of the landmarks of the saxophone trio album tradition over the last 50 years.[4]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by Branford Marsalis, except where indicated.

1."The Dark Keys"10:42
2."Hesitation" (Wynton Marsalis)5:58
3."A Thousand Autumns"6:20
6."Judas Iscariot" (Delfeayo Marsalis)7:48
7."Blutain" (Jeff "Tain" Watts)7:36
8."Schott Happens"8:16



  1. ^ a b c Stanley, Leo. "The Dark Keys". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-11-11.
  2. ^ a b Futterman, Steve (1996-11-29). "Music Review: The Dark Keys". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2014-11-11.
  3. ^ Cook, Richard; Morton, Brian (2008). The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings (9th ed.). Penguin. p. 948. ISBN 978-0-141-03401-0.
  4. ^ Ratliff, Ben (2009-07-27). "Critics' Choice: New CDs". Retrieved 2014-11-11.

External links[edit]