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Dan Auerbach: A Black Key Plays Solo

Dan Auerbach isn't afraid to multi-task: The multi-instrumentalist, producer, vocalist, collaborator and songwriter can now add "solo artist" to his resume. In addition to touring with the bluesy rock duo The Black Keys, he's built his own analog recording studio, where he's engineered albums for Radio Moscow, Brimstone Howl and Patrick Sweany, as well as his protege, fellow Ohio native Jessica Lea Mayfield.

It was in this studio that Auerbach recorded and mixed his solo debut, Keep It Hid. While it's not a huge musical departure from The Black Keys' raw, foot-stomping sound, its songs conceal a melancholy and introspective side. With a mix of psychedelia, soul and bluegrass, Keep It Hid features vocals by Mayfield, as well as performances by a full backing band. Driven by reverb and riffs, Auerbach's solo work sounds authentic, blunt and powerful.

These songs, one of which was penned by his father, revisit the genres he played as a boy. In this interview with host David Dye, Auerbach discusses his musical experiences growing up.

Copyright NPR 2016.

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