Beastie Boys Biography And Top 10 Songs

One of my first memories of hip-hop and rap was the Beastie Boys song "(You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party!)" on the radio while I was still at school. I remember saving all my money just to buy the album Licensed To Ill and I now rate it one of my top 50 albums of all time. At the time I was listening to a lot of chart music and "oldies" but the Beastie Boys helped to change my musical tastes and now hip-hop and rap is probably my favourite genre.

The Beastie Boys originated in New York, USA and consisted of Michael Diamond (Mike D), Adam Yauch (MCA), John Berry and Kate Schellenbach. There have been many contributors since then, the most popular being Adam Horovitz (Ad-Rock), Michael Schwartz (Mix Master Mike), and Wendell Fite (DJ Hurricane). The name Beastie was thought to stand for "Boys Entering Anarchistic States Towards Internal Excellence" but in a report with Mike D he said that this happened after they had come up with the name. In the early days the group were support acts for bands like The Misfits, Reagan Youth, Bad Brains and The Dead Kennedys.

In 1983 John Berry left and was replaced by Ad-Rock, soon after the Beastie Boys signed to Def Jam and released the EP Rock Hard in 1984. Not long after, Kelly left the band and it is said that it was a result of their manager thinking she didn't fit the bands rap image. In 1985 the Beastie Boys opened for Public Image Ltd. (Johnny Rotten from the Sex Pistols new band),they also supported Madonna on her "Virgin" tour and on the Raising Hell tour with Run DMC.

The debut album Licensed To Ill was released in 1986 and is reported as the best selling Rap album of the 1980's and the first Rap album to goto #1 on the Billboard album chart. The album stayed at the top of the chart for five weeks and sold over 5 million copies. Paul's Boutique was released in 1989 after they signed with Capitol Records and is considered a landmark for hip-hop recordings due to its use of multi-layering and sampling techniques. Rolling Stone Magazine described the album as "the Pet Sounds/Dark Side of the Moon of hip hop." and it went on to sell over a million copies.

Check Your Head was released in 1992 after yet another change in label to Grand Royal Records (Beastie Boys own label) and the band played all the instruments themselves. The album went double platinum in the US. It is said in the Oxford English Dictionary that the Beastie Boys created the haircut term called the Mullet in the song Mullet Head in 1994.

When Ill Communication was released in 1994 it went straight into the US chart at #1, soon after, the Beastie Boys headlined at Lollapalooza (an American music festival) alongside The Smashing Pumpkins. They also went on a tour to raise awareness for The Milarepa Fund which deal with Tibetan human rights and Adam Yauch organised the Tibetan Freedom Concert which saw over 100,000 people through the gates of Golden Gate Park in San Francisco in 1996.

Aglio e Olio was released in 1995 and resembled a more punk style than that usually associated with their Rap style. The In Sound From Way Out! was released in 1996 and was an instrumental album consisting of jazz/funk beats.

Hello Nasty saw a new shift in the Beastie Boys music when DJ Hurricane was replaced by Mix Master Mike. The album was released in 1998 and went straight into the US chart at #1 and sold over 690,000 sales in the first week alone. The album also went into the #1 slot in UK, Australia, Germany, The Netherlands, New Zealand, and Sweden.

When To The 5 Boroughs was released in 2004 it was the first of their albums to be completely produced by themselves and reached #1 in the US chart and the single "Ch-Check It Out" was #2 on the world internet download chart. There was some controversy when the album was released as some people claimed the CD installed spyware when played on a PC but these allegations were settled as it was only copy protection software which only appeared on European copies.

Beastie Boys released The Mix Up in 2007 and prior to its release some tracks were leaked onto the internet and it was thought that the album would be purely instrumental but when the album was actually released it was soon discovered that it was just a myth.

The Beastie Boys are currently producing a new album.

My Top 10 Beastie Boys Songs are:

01. Girls
02. Brass Monkey
03. Pass The Mic
04. Time To Get Ill
05. Three MC's and One DJ
06. Body Movin'
07. (You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party!)
08. Intergalactic
09. Car Thief
10. Skills To Pay The Bills
 

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