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Dalai Lama & Music Industry React To The Death Of Beastie Boys’ MCA — Angel’s Rock Report

Memorials to Beastie Boy Adam Yauch, who died of cancer Friday at 47, poured in over the weekend from members of the rock, hip-hop and pop communities, with many artists writing lengthy tributes to a man whose passions stretched far beyond the boundaries of the music world.

  • Bandmate Adam Horovitz (AKA Ad-Rock) took to the trio’s blog Sunday night to thank “all our friends and family (which is one and the same) for their love and support. I’m glad to know that all the love that Yauch has put out into the world is coming right back at him.”
  • At their Friday show in Newark, New Jersey, Red Hot Chili Peppers frontman Anthony Kiedis paid homage by writing “MCA” on his shirt, while the band offered instrumental quotes from the Beasties’ “Gratitude” and “What’cha Want” during the show, which they dedicated to Yauch. Kiedis told the crowd, “We lost a good man today. He left the world a lot of beauty. I hope you carry that flame. Adam was for real.” Two other Chili Peppers had tweeted earlier: Flea wrote, “Prayers and all the love I could ever muster for Adam Yauch. What a beautiful man. God bless his beautiful soul. A class act all the way.” Chad Smith wrote simply, “Wow, lost another brother..sail on MCA.”
  • Also that night, the New York Mets swapped their usual walk-up music for an all-Beastie Boys lineup. Third Baseman David Wright, who usually gets the Beasties “Sabotage” when he comes to bat, switched to “Brass Monkey” for the occasion.
  • At the Hollywood Bowl, on the opposite coast, Coldplay‘s Chris Martin performed a slow vocal and piano version of “(You Gotta) Fight for the Right (To Party).” As he ended, Martin said, “We’re sending all our love to the Beastie Boys.” Martin repeated his performance on Sunday at an L.A. area radio station concert.
  • Also at that concert, Angels and AirwavesTom DeLonge announced “a moment for [the Beastie Boys], because I also aspired to be in a band and have a lot of fun like they did.” Grouplove dedicated a song to Yauch, while Dirty Heads did the same with their entire set and member Duddy B wore a Beastie Boys Check Your Head t-shirt.
  • On her Facebook page, Madonna wrote that she’s “very sad to hear about Adam’s passing…The Beastie Boys were one of a kind! And so was Adam! They were all an important part of my musical history and integral to the musical revolution that was happening at the time.”
  • Eminem stated: “Adam Yauch brought a lot of positivity into the world and I think it’s obvious to anyone how big of an influence the Beastie Boys were on me and so many others. They are trailblazers and pioneers and Adam will be sorely missed.”
  • Jay-Z said: “”May a great musical pioneer rest in peace. Our prayers go out to his family, as his hip hop family mourns our loss and celebrates his life.”
  • Other hip-hop artists who took to Twitter or issued statements include Snoop Dogg, Sean “Diddy Combs,” Nas, Public Enemy‘s Chuck D., Q-Tip, Cee Lo Green, Outkast‘s Big Boi and Run DMC’s Rev Run.
  • Justin Timberlake tweeted that he’s “crushed” to hear of Yauch’s passing and called him “a true pioneer of art.”
  • Nirvana‘s Krist Novocelic tweeted: “Thank you for [the] ‘Sabotage’ bass riff and many other great grooves. Adam also worked for justice and peace consciousness.”
  • Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan tweeted: “Sad news about Adam Yauch’s passing. A man of dignity and spiritual conviction. I always had great respect for him in times we met and talked.
  • Among those who wrote long tributes were Kid Rock and Roots drummer Questlove, whose rambling tribute to The Beastie Boys was titled MCA, What Does It Mean? Although he barely singled out Yauch, he wrote a heartfelt gut reaction to the news of his passing. Kid Rock concluded his with these words: “My heart absolutely bleeds for my friend Mike D. and for Ad-Rock. Having lost a member of my own band, I understand a little of what it’s like. I only hope in writing this that it brings a little comfort to his friends, family and fans, what an inspiration this man was and always will be to me…From one of your biggest fans, rest in peace homeboy.”
  • Luscious Jackson drummer Kate Schellenbach, an original Beastie Boys member, closed a lengthy reminiscence with this: “Adam was all about making art. From the earliest days of the Beastie Boys, they were serious about creating and that never went away. Our band and so many others watched and learned from their example. Over 30 years of friendship, we watched Adam expand into activism (Tibetan Freedom) and film (Oscilloscope Laboratories). We saw him create a life that included family, creativity and curiosity. A life way too short.”
  • Both NBC’s Saturday Night Live and HBO’s telecast of the recent Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony — which included the Beasties — offered tributes to Yauch. SNL followed Weekend Update with a brief clip of Yauch performing “Sure Shot” with the Beasties on the show and closed with a still photo of him. HBO also used a photo following the Rock Hall show’s closing credits, with the caption “In Memory of Adam Yauch.” On Friday, MTV News presented an hour-long special, Adam Yauch: Remembering a Beastie Boy.
  • A spokesperson for Tibet’s Dalai Lama noted that “Adam had helped us raise awareness on the plight of the Tibetan people by organizing various freedom [for] Tibet concerts and he will be remembered by his holiness and the Tibetan people.”

The latest post on the official Beastie Boys’ Facebook page is a message from Mike D:

I know, we should have tweeted and instagrammed every sad, happy and inspired thought, smile or tear by now. But honestly the last few days have just been a blur of deep emotions for our closest friend, band mate and really brother. I miss Adam so much. He really served as a great example for myself and so many of what determination, faith, focus, and humility coupled with a sense of humor can accomplish. The world is in need of many more like him. We love you Adam. BTW this photo sent to me by a friend, (thanks Saslow) is just one awesome example of how NYC is such a unique place that amidst it’s huge size and frenetic pace it really opens up it’s heart in so many ways and on on so many levels in times like these. And though it makes me cry sometimes, it has been really amazing and moving to see.
Mike

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