Today the hip-hop community received a crushing blow with the news that Adam “MCA” Yauch, one third of the recent Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductees the Beastie Boys, died this morning (May 4, 2012) after battling cancer for three years. He was 47.
As a musician and MC behind classic albums like Paul's Boutique, Check Your Head, and Licensed To Ill, he inspired a generation heavyweights in the industry today—many of which have sent Complex statements expressing their sadness and respect for Yauch.
“It's impossible to measure the influence Adam Yauch and The Beastie Boys have had on me personally, on hip-hop culture as a whole, and on rock and roll in general. His legacy here at Def Jam is nothing short of iconic - he was one of the pioneering artists of this great label and family. We are filled with a sense of loss today...the Def Jam flag is at half mast. Our heartfelt condolences go out to his family and loved ones." —Joie Manda, President, Def Jam Recordings
"MCA was a great artist, visionary and a selfless humanitarian He and his bandmates were especially kind to me and we became good friends. They took Tribe out on tour a couple of times and showed us the ropes. We spent a lot of time together and I learned a great deal from him and the boys. Our roots are intertwined in many ways. I can't put into words how crushed I am. My condolences goes out to his family. He will be greatly missed." —Q-Tip
"One of my greatest moments in music was when I worked with the Beastie Boys...Now today I'm hearing our brother is gone. I prayed this would not happen. MCA was so cool, man. We had great talks about what it was like for them in the beginning, getting into the rap game. I'll never forget that experience for the rest of my life. MCA is true legend who influenced me. God bless his soul and his loved ones." —NAS
"Though I’ve been a fan of The Beastie Boys since I was 12-years old (there is a lost tape of me performing “Fight For Your Right to Party” with my friends at the mall), I got to know Adam when I had the opportunity to work with The Beastie Boys on the song “Don't Play No Game That I Can't Win" for the Hot Sauce Committee Part Two album. Adam was what I call an instant friend. He was someone whose warmth, honesty, and generosity were felt immediately. As an artist, he is a legend. He is the kind of artist I’ve always aspired to be like. He was the epitome of a new kind of cool, he was hilarious, a visionary, talented on so many different levels from music to film. He was socially conscious, spiritually aware, an activist, and he was always humble and down to earth. It was such an honor to have known him, and I will miss him. This is such a monumental loss, not just for the music and film communities, but for the whole world. " —Santigold
"I’m fucking bummed out. Adam and the Beasties helped develop the landscape for genre-defying musicians as we know it. He was one of the first people to say, 'There are no rules.' There will never be another." —Asher Roth