Friday, May 04, 2012

Adam "MCA" Yauch of the Beastie Boys Dies at 47

Adam Yauch, a founding member of the rap group Beastie Boys, died today at just 47 years old. He had been undergoing treatment for cancer since 2009, when a tumor was discovered in his salivary glands. The cancer delayed the release of "Hot Sauce Committee, Pt. 2," the most recent album by the Beastie Boys.

Part of the notice of Adam Yauch's death on the Beastie Boys website.

At the time of the diagnosis, statements indicated that Yauch thought the cancer was treatable and could be overcome. It's not been revealed if Adam Yauch's death was the direct result of the cancer that was diagnosed in 2009.

The Beastie Boys were the first rap group to have an album hit #1 on the charts—their first full-length effort, "Licensed to Ill," in 1986.

Yauch co-founded the Beastie Boys in 1979, along with friends Mike "Mike D" Diamond and Adam "Ad-Rock" Horowitz.

The tributes have been coming in from far and wide in the music community, and beyond. (Dan Reilly of has collected a number of them here.) What's more, all starting players for the New York Mets have said that they will use Beastie Boys songs as their walk-up music tonight, it was reported tonight on Twitter.
Of course, the best way to pay tribute to Yauch is by listening to some of the music he created. You can hear an appearance that his bandmates made last year to KCRW radio, to celebrate the release of "Hot Sauce Committee, Pt. 2." Also check out a tribute to Adam Yauch that KCRW DJ Jason Bentley played today.

The Beastie Boys had a profound impact not only on hip hop but other types of music. And Adam Yauch put charitable causes, particularly the struggle for rights in Tibet, at the forefront of his non-musical efforts.

Rest in peace, MCA. Our condolences go out to his family and friends, and the other members of the Beastie Boys.

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