.Adam Yauch of the Beastie Boys Dead at 47

Adam Yauch, member of legendary hip-hop trio the Beastie Boys, has died this morning after succumbing to cancer. The 47-year-old known as MCA formed the group, then a punk band, with Adam “Ad Rock” Horowitz and Mike “Mike D” Diamond in the late 70s.
It was the release of 1986’s License to Ill that helped cement the Beastie Boys as hip-hop iconoclasts, placing them alongside the ranks of still rising acts Run DMC, A Tribe Called Quest, and Busta Rhymes. By the 90s, the Beastie Boys were the epitome of New York cool, gatekeepers to an entire culture, responsible for starting the careers of directors like Spike Jonze, coining the term ‘mullet,’ and making references to everyone and everything from Laverne & Shirley to the Tibetan freedom movement, to which the group remained lifelong devotees.
In 2009 Yauch revealed news of a cancerous tumor and spent the next three years in treatment. Last month, the illness prevented the rapper from attending a ceremony for the group’s entry into the Hall of Fame.

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