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Beastie Boys
They can be dubbed as preachy gospel mayhem, drunkenness, misogyny irresponsibility and teenage rebellion and an indolence group. They ve sought and found religion in a can of Budweiser. They were three affluent brats from New York in their early 20 s whose names are different as they preferred to do business under clipped sobriquets were King Adrock (Adam Horovitz), MCA (Adam Yauch) and Mike D (Michael Diamond). The Beastie Boys are a rap trio from New York formed in 1981 with Beastie meaning "Boys Entering Anarchistic States Towards Internal Excellence."

The Beginning:

The Beastie Boys were formed when Mike D (Michael Diamond) and MCA (Adam Yauch) decided to form their own band. They began hitting local clubs with Kate Schellenback (who later became a member of Lucious Jackson) and John Berry, playing similar music to their sound of today: hardcore punk rock. Their brand of loud rock with a dose a fun resulted in their first release, a 7" EP called Poly Wog Stew . The four members then disbanded after this effort.

In 1983 the boys reformed, King Adrock (Adam Horovitz) joined in as the guitarist. The group recorded a track Cookie Puss which began their introduction into the rap sound. Although the record was considered a joke hip-hop record, the rap community began to notice the group. The B-side to the single, Beastie Revolution , was snatched by British Airways in a promo commercial without authorization. The Beastie Boys were richer by a $40,000 settlement. In order to strengthen their emerging rap influence, the boys hired DJ Rick Rubin.

A year later they were signed to newly launched Def Jam Records as one of their first artists. The band were sent to play black rap clubs and eventually were asked to open for the diva of pop, Madonna on her Like A Virgin tour. In 1985, The Boys toured in a more relevant setting with Run-D.M.C. and L.L. Cool J on the Raising Hell tour and were now a more confident lot.

Their music :

In 1987 they were in the news more so for the controversy they created. They released their first full length debut LP, Licensed To Ill. The critics loved the LP and commercial success was equally impressive hitting at number one on the pop charts and selling over 8 million copies in the U.S. In the beginning the album horrified record producers, especially when the Boys decided to actually name the album Don't be a Faggot . The world was introduced to the Boys with their Top 10 single and video, (You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party!) that had a deviant way of message to youngsters. The lyrics said that the kids want to party, Mom says no, kids hate mom, life s not fair .. , etc. The video for this spoke volumes about the trio s bad side, and even the BBC deemed the video unsuitable for airing. The song was a hit anyway and the image of the three as uncouth, cusorily washed beer swillers and porno connoisseurs, lager louts, stuck fast on them. They were in the news but only for a few months. The other tracks She's On Itand No Sleep Till Brooklyn were better. The Boys then headlined their own tour in the U.S. and went on tour in Europe with Run-D.M.C. where their on-stage antics resulted in much controversy in England. Although the band and their LP received a positive response from radio listeners and record buyers, not many people felt The Beastie Boys were the new band around and were here to stay. This was more due to the creative levels of the band, shown to be consistent and innovative with each LP release. The style of The Beastie Boys can be described as a mesh of hip-hop and punk, combined with electronic rock and mixing innovation. The result has been success on numerous musical platforms including the alternative, rock and hip-hop scenes.

You can read the rest of our feature on the Beastie Boys in the July 2004 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.

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