Adam Yauch Tribute ~ Beastie Boys Rapper Dies, Aged 48

Posted on 4 May 2012
By Martin Higgins
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News is filtering through that legendary Beastie Boys rapper Adam Yauch has died after a long battle with cancer. He was aged just 48.

As part of one of the most revolutionary Hip Hop acts ever, Adam Yauch had a distinctive style that was off kilter with the other founding members.

His voice was instantly recognisable, perhaps less explosive and in your face, but his bars were delivered with a laid-back verve that offset the humour in all of the Beastie Boys lyrics.

Yauch was inspired to start a band after watching Black Flag in the Peppermint Lounge in the late 70’s, and together with Mike D and Ad-Rock, a couple of teenagers from New York, they rewrote the rap rule book and gave pissed off teens an anthem to live by, with Fight For Your Right.

The Brooklyn trio originally started as a hardcore punk band in 1979, before making the transition to the burgeoning Hip Hop scene of the early 80’s. A move that would prove highly lucrative, as they would go on to sell some 40m albums in their long and illustrious careers.

Yauch, also known as MCA, was diagnosed with cancerous tumour in his salivary gland in 2009, and had been receiving treatment.

In 2011, it was widely circulated on the internet that he had beaten the illness. Yet he released a statement through his management dispelling these false claims, saying:

“Hello My Friends While I’m grateful for all the positive energy people are sending my way, reports of my being totally cancer free are exaggerated. I’m continuing treatment, staying optimistic and hoping to be cancer free in the near future.”

As yet there have been no official statements, so the cause of death is still unknown.

The trio will best be remembered for the raucous anthems which captured the rebellion of the early underground Hip-Hip scene and for producing some of the most ground-breaking videos ever to air on MTV, perhaps the best of these being Sabotage and Intergalactic.

Words by Martin Higgins, at