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Adam Yauch of Beastie Boys Has Cancer

I love Adam Yauch! But the winds of impermanence blow cold this July day.
Adam “MCA” Yauch, leader of the Beastie Boys and practicing Tibetan buddhist, has cancer — a salivary gland tumor, apparently not life-threatening — and the Beasties are cancelling all their summer dates.

The “Adam Yauch Has Cancer” news and details are well summarized, with video of the announcement, of the always awesome Brooklyn Vegan music site. (No, you will not be subject to vegan propaganda if you go there, just lots and lots of indie/alternative music news.)


And WHAT on earth does this have to do with buddhism? Well, as the Shambhala Sun interview with Adam starts: 

Boy Adam Yauch brought Tibetan music and Buddhist philosophy to their
latest album, Ill Communication. He talks to The Shambhala Sun about
hip-hop, hardcore, helping people, and ‘gettin’ stupid.’

And cancer put a full stop to his plans today.
Impermanence of all conditioned phenomena – doesn’t get much more Noble Truthy than that. 


And that’s my photo of Adam, above. I’ve been a fan for (gulp) decades
— he’s my generation. I still remember them playing in Washington
Square Park, in New York, and I have that early ROIR cassette of them
doing some kind of speed punk hardcore thing, tho’ I haven’t played it
in years. And I always, always adored the Beasties’ irreverent take as
well as their reverence for excellence. Their aesthetic always struck
me as buddhist.

Tho’ it looks like Adam’s parotid gland tumor isn’t life-threatening,
it does close down the Beastie concert plans this summer. Just this morning
I was talking to my brother about his plans to go to Montreal to see
them, perhaps. NOT.


Here are the Beasties in motion, at Hiro Ballroom, 6 October 2006, at the Rational Animal benefit that night.

In motion, as are we all.

Comments read comments(6)
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posted July 20, 2009 at 2:01 pm

the magic rat

posted July 20, 2009 at 2:25 pm

i love the beasties too and am saddened by this news, but it does sound like things should be fine in the long run. i was planning on seeing them at the apw festival in liberty state park on july 31, but impermanence rules the day.
mca is a real new yorker, born in brooklyn. a few years ago i saw him walking through soho, pushing his baby in a stroller, just having a grand old time.
and i’ve seen them play at a tibet benefit, so this discussion certainly belongs here.

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posted July 21, 2009 at 8:33 am

I just followed Ehan’s link to lyrics depot and got a warning from McAfee Site Advisor that said: “When we tested (the Lyrics Depot site), this site attempted to make unauthorized changes to our test PC by exploiting a browser security vulnerability. This is a serious security threat which could lead to an infection of your PC”
So – watch out and do not navigate to that site. There are probably other sites that list the lyrics.
(btw – MaAfee Site Advisor is free. A good thing to have on your browser.)
I am too old to know much about the Beastie Boys but I do know about cancer. I wish Adam all the best and will keep him in my prayers. chb.

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posted July 21, 2009 at 11:52 am

Thanks Charles, I was worried when that warning popped up re: that link as well.
lyricsdepot and similar are NOTORIOUS spyware, adware, annoying-popup- that-won’t-go-way installer sites.
That’s cuz they are totally spurious as to their permission to reprint lyrics – usually they got none.

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erik w biggs

posted July 21, 2009 at 3:50 pm

hi, i just wanna say i got much love for all-u-guys i fear two things in life heart problims and cancer no matter how treatable it is get that funky wackk crap out ! any ways im a super huge detroiter
hope to see you up and running around with sachquch asap
from d-michigan

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posted July 24, 2009 at 4:36 pm

AWWWW, now im sad, I Love MCA!!

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