|Left to Right: Mike D, Ad-Rock, the late MCA|
MCA was like the George Harrison of hip-hop: the third banana in the biggest group, with a devotion to Eastern mysticism (he was a Buddhist) and a great sense of humor, who produced films and staged benefit shows (the Tibetan Freedom Concerts).
The Beasties were true rap pioneers, doing what Elvis did with rock & roll - taking the black man's music and making it their own.
But one of the things that made them really interesting was the way they experimented with other types of music, from hardcore to jazz instrumentals to straight-up arena rock like "Sabotage," driven by MCA's strummed bass line.
Their fantastic LP Ill Communication was one of the key records of my summer of '94 soundtrack (along with Beck's Mellow Gold, Urge Overkill's Saturation and Hole's Live Through This), and for that I thank them.
When my homies and I needed to do some pre-gaming before heading downtown, we would break it down and put on "Root Down."
R.I.P., MCA. Because you can't, you won't and you don't stop.