The Key is Vince Gill's eighth studio album that was released by MCA Nashville on August 11, 1998.
- Don't Come Cryin' To Me (featuring Dawn Sears) 3:06
- If You Ever Have Forever In Mind 4:38
- I Never Really Knew You 2:14
- Kindly Keep It Country 3:09
- All Those Years 3:57
- I'll Take Texas 2:05
- My Kind Of Woman/My Kind Of Man (duet with Patty Loveless) 3:53
- There's Not Much Love Here Anymore 3:28
- Let Her In 3:03
- The Hills Of Caroline 4:44
- Live To Tell It All 3:36
- What They All Call Love 3:20
- The Key To Life 4:02
"The Key" peaked at #11 on the Billboard 200 and topped Billboard's Top Country Albums chart.
Allmusic's Jana Pendragon wrote: "For emotional depth, honesty, and the kind of musical depth and artistry listeners have come to expect from Gill, The Key stands among his very finest recordings."
Entertainment Weekly's Alanna Nash gave the album an "A", writing: "This redemptive album returns him to a traditional sound and to the heart of his talent. Guests like Patty Loveless, Alison Krauss, Sara Evans, and Shelby Lynne add more than just window dressing, but The Key is still Gill’s."
Gary Dreztka of the Chicago Tribune wrote: "Here's proof that a mainstream country star can produce an album of new songs that is at once richly traditional and decidedly commercial. Gill, one of Nashville's most popular singers, recently experienced the loss of his father and the collapse of his 17-year marriage. Listeners are welcome to read between the lines of the songs, but it would do them more good merely to listen and be moved by the poetry and honest emotions on display."