Adam Yauch, MCA of the Beastie Boys, dies at 47
Adam Nathaniel Yauch, better known as MCA of the Beastie Boys, passed away today at the age of 47.
May 4, 2012
Adam Nathaniel Yauch, better known as MCA of the Beastie Boys, passed away today at the age of 47. He had been battling cancer, which his announcement in 2009 lead to the canceling of several dates, including the Outside Lands festival, and a postponement of their latest album (and now last album with all original members) Hot Sauce Committee, Pt. 2. As the Beastie Boys were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame earlier this year, MCA was noticeably absent.
The relatively gravelly-voiced Beastie, who provided aural balance to the higher-pitched stylings of Ad-Rock and Mike D, MCA has been with the crew from the very start, since their beginnings as a hardcore punk outfit who first played together on his 17th birthday. Since then, and Beastie’s rise as a hip-hop/punk hybrid (the first example of the two styles compatibility), MCA had evolved from being a beer swilling, women objectifying party animal (what the pop cultures would now call “bro’s”) to a more enlightened and practicing Buddhist, rare in the world of hip-hop and American music in general, revising the lyrics from Licensed to Ill in his later concerts. He also became an activist, organizing all-star concerts to aid the Tibetan cause. Along with his mic work and the guitar chops that he showed off frequently on tracks like “Sabotage”, he was a film director, handling many of the groups music videos under the pseudonym Nathaniel Hörnblowér, and helmed “Awesome! I Fuckin’ Shot That!”, the concert film made with fan footage in the crowds, along with “Gunnin’ for that #1 Spot”, a documentary about basketball prospects from New York.
Yauch is survived by his wife and daughter, and bandmates. [UPDATE: Here is the Beastie Boys’ statement on MCA, via stereogum.]
Check out some of our fondest memories of the Beasties after the jump.