Who's in the band Beastie Boys

Beastie Boys

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Beastie Boys

Oh god, white guys make hip hop. No chance. The public must have judged something like this when the Beastie Boys initially only made the USA happy with their debut album "Licensed To Ill" in November 1986. But with first songs like "No Sleep Till Brooklyn" or "You Gotta Fight For Your Right" Mike D (Mike Diamond), MCA (Adam Yauch), Ad Rock (Adam Horovitz) and the again and again as unofficial and fourth Beastie Boy traded Money Mark (Mark Ramos Nishita) to shut up their critics.

Founded in 1981, it starts at MCA's birthday party as a punk band and with five members. Gigs among others in the CBGBs as well as a first single on Ratcage follow. When Kate Schellenbach on drums (later Luscious Jackson) and guitarist John Berry left the crew in 1983, Horovitz joined the band. With him on guitar and the single "Cookie Pass", the style extension towards Hip Hop is indicated for the first time. The track caused so much sensation in New York that the Beastie Boys gave up punk and hardcore for the time being.

In 1984 the men from Brooklyn, New York met Rick Rubin, who recognized their potential, signed them a year later for his young label Def Jam and took them on tours with stars like Madonna and Run DMC ("Raisin 'Hell" tour). This opens the door to the big, wide world of pop for the first time. With Rubin, the idea was developed to bring the Beasties into position with rough beats, hard rock riffs, raps and a weird image suitable for parties: "Licensed To Ill" becomes the first rap album to hit one of the US charts. Criticism for the over-the-top and offensive mix is ​​hailing from all sides.

The sound cake of the Beastie Boys - hip hop beats mixed with a few elements from rock, a huge pack of samples and nasty scratches - somehow hits the nerve of the music consumers who were so annoyed by the soft pop excesses of the late 80s. Above all, the early adolescent views on sex and the world that initially dominate the beastie raps are what inspire the young clientele. On the 1987 album tour, the Beasties, all three of whom come from a middle-class, Jewish environment, sometimes even went to jail. During this time the will to change image falls.

With the release of "Paul's Boutique" (1989, produced by The Dust Brothers) suddenly there are rich, psychedelic, funky grooves and lots of samples instead of flat puberty lyrics, which is why the album is declared a "flop" by the record company and so are the fans the first hour do not recognize their band. Before that, the Beasties Boys break up in a bitter dispute with Def Jam / Rubin and move to Los Angeles or Capitiol Records. In the meantime, "Paul's Boutique" has sold well and is considered a pioneering album by the Beasties.

In L.A., the trio founded their own label, Grand Royal, which was not only shaping the style in terms of music, but also lifestyle - with its own magazine (but was discontinued in 2001 due to work that did not cover costs). There "Check Your Head" appears with its dignified laid back grooves from funk and jazz (the beasties sit at the instruments themselves or spin their jams through the electronic wolf) as well as rough and hit singles à la "So What'Cha Want "and" Pass The Mic ". The third catapults the band (Mike D often uses the drumsticks for the recordings, Yauch for the bass and Ad-Rock for the guitar, Money Mark uses the keys) back into the limelight, finally establishing it as an act to be harvested - also and especially in alternative- Fan circles.

As one of the greatest successes of the band, meanwhile also known as active supporters of the Tibetan democracy movement (from 1996 to 2004 the Beasties put on some huge open airs, sometimes in several places at the same time, with numerous rock greats to draw attention to the problem), one can call the 1994 track "Sabotage".

The exceptional song gets a suitably casual video clip tailored to the fur, in which the beasties transform the style of the 70s into the coolness of the 90s. The accompanying album "Ill Communication" and the second single "Sure Shot" break all record barriers and, despite its sometimes rough, sometimes punky pace, are also digestible for the mainstream.

In the same year the boys released early punk recordings with "Some Old Bullshit". In 1995 the eleven-minute independent release "Aglio E Oglio" followed with the same flick of the tongue, while "The In Sound From Way Out!" Was presented in 1996 as a collection of instrumental jazz, soul and funkin-inspired tunes.

It wasn't until 1998, when the Beasties are now living more often in New York again, that the eagerly awaited "Hello Nasty" album with the single "Intergalactic" appears. The New Yorkers still sound like no other hip hop combo and their videos are still inimitable. While old dub master Lee "Scratch" Perry is on an album track, Fatboy Slim delivers a rather gallant remix for "Body Movin '".

No wonder that their 1998 world tour, on which the Absolute Beginners are allowed to open up in this country, will be another success: The Beasties go with a rotating 360-degree stage in the middle of the audience. At the beginning of the tour, live tracks are made available for free download, which leads to a heated dispute with Capitol. Since 1998, DJ world champion Mix Master Mike has been regularly behind the Beastie turntables (in the studio and on stage)

And although the guys sometimes see their first record as a sin of youth, the 1999 retrospective "The Sounds Of Science" also includes "Fight For Your Right" and the brand new song "Alive". The trio then pursues their own projects again. Ad Rock starts with his secondary occupation BS 2000 ("Simply Mortified") and is also on stage in Europe. In the meantime, the very extensive and worth seeing double DVD "Anthology" (2002) of his main band is being released. The associated tour has to be canceled due to a serious bike accident involving Mike D.

After the attacks of September 11, 2001, the boys host a benefit concert. In 2002 they set up the band's own oscilloscope studio in NYC and a year later they take a stand against the Iraq war with the free online track "In A World Gone Mad". As a harbinger, the trio sends the single "Ch-Check It Out" into the running until the long player "To The 5 Boroughs" is released in June.

As the title suggests, it is a commitment by the three to their homeland, as the city on the Hudson River is divided into five districts. In terms of sound technology, the B-Boys are again based on the old school, but lift them into the new millennium with futuristic sounds and thick basses. After almost 25 years in the music business, a Beasties Best Of is like one of their live gigs: one hit song chases the next.

Speaking of live gigs, at the "To The 5 Boroughs" tour stage in New York, the guys passed 50 handheld cameras to the audience, of course only with the best of intentions. Not to present the happy fans with it, but to weave the cinematic results into a film.

"Awesome: I F ** kin 'Shot That" is the title of the resulting concert documentary, which will be shown exclusively at film festivals in 2006 and then exclusively in selected cinemas around the world. Of course, the result will then find its way onto the DVD shelves. By the way, the director of the multimedia fun is Nathaniel Hornblower, better known as Adam Yauch.

At the beginning of March 2007 the New Yorkers announced the new studio record "The Mix-Up", which will be released at the end of June as the band's first full length instrumental long player. The record does not tie in with old sales successes, it wins a Grammy for it.

In July 2009, MCA announced by video message that he had early stage parotid cancer, the release of the eighth studio album called "Hot Sauce Committee Part One" was now delayed and headlining gigs were canceled. For this, digitally remastered deluxe versions of "Paul's Boutique", "Check Your Head", "Ill Communication" and "Hello Nasty" will be in stores.

The disc, renamed "Hot Sauce Committee Part Two", will follow in May 2011, with Santigold and Nas as guest vocalists. The recovered MCA is also directing the half-hour and insane YouTube film "Fight For Your Right (Revisited)", which turns into a true Hollywood show in honor of the Beasties.

Over 40 million albums sold worldwide, four number one albums in the US charts, numerous awards (video awards etc.) and three Grammys are now on the boys' credit side. For one of the longest active Hip Hop (and much more music) acts there can only be one thing in 2012: admission to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

MCA is absent from the celebrations - Mike D and Ad-Rock read a thank you letter from the third Beasties. A good two and a half weeks later, the news that nobody wants to hear follows: Adam Yauch lost the fight against cancer on May 4, 2012. He dies with his family in a Manhattan hospital. With his death, history is one of the bands that shaped alternative pop culture at the end of the 20th century.

In the following year, news spread that Adam Horovitz and Michael Diamond decided to publish an autobiography about their band in 2015. It stayed with this information for a long time, in 2015 Mike was forced to speak up again: "Bringing the book on the market before 2017 is an impossibility. I will be stoned for saying this, but I just want to be honest."

And he is right: in November 2018 the time will finally come. Simply titled "Beastie Boys Book" is 542 pages long and tells the story of this special New York band, complemented by guest contributions, including filmmakers Wes Anderson, Spike Jonze and writers Colson Whitehead and Jonathan Lethem. As far as the form is concerned, it is a kaleidoscopic structure of text and image and therefore cannot be compared with conventional rock biographies of the Keith Richards or Eric Clapton variety.