The news just hit me that founding member, Adam Yauch, known to legions and generations of people as MCA, of the Beastie Boys has died. First and foremost, my feelings of sympathy and shared grief go towards his family. MCA leaves behind a wife and daughter and with them my heart felt feelings go first.
I don’t have any cool pictures of MCA as we never met in person, yet his life and work has had an unparalleled effect on my life. Quite bluntly, without him and his creativity I would not be where I am today, let alone be the person I am today. My first contact with the Beastie Boys came very early in life, I remember it vividly: I must have have been around 7 or 8, and I walked into my father’s basement, and whilst he was working out, he was listening to “Licence To Ill” on vinyl. I was mesmerized, by everything. The sounds, the energy, the cover- it is hard to fathom what their work must have been like to a teenager at that time.
Rest assured, by the time I was a teenager, ready to walk down the path that led me to where I am today, the Beastie Boys supplied not only the soundtrack but an entire philosophy to a generation lost and clueless in the early 90s. It was them, the Beastie Boys that materialized into a tangible idea what so many of us had felt but weren’t able to articulate. “Check Your Head” essentially puts into context the intangible concept of the early 90s.
My entire life from the age of 13 to at least 25 were spent dancing to their music, singing to their songs, being inspired by everything they had done and without being shameful about it, wanting to least try and be like them. For me, the combination of punk rock, hardcore, hip hop, graffiti, streetwear, art and everything in between was a blueprint to what I wanted to do, and quite frankly, still want to do.
The Beastie Boys stood for something. They had a moral, ethical and creative backbone onto which I could always rely on when times were shit, and when times were good. Like any leader in their field, they were the compass to entire genrations.
I still cannot get my ahead around the fact that MCA, a shining beacon in my life has died. In all selfish honesty, I wasn’t and am not ready for this fact to take hold in my life. Like any and every fan, I wanted to grow old with them.
Thank you MCA. For everything you have done, for all your unrelenting creativity that has allowed people with only a fraction of what you possess to carve out a niche in this world. You were and will continue to be an inspiration to me and again, I cannot thank you enough for your contribution to my life.
Rest in Peace.