12:39 PM on 05/07/12
The Beastie Boys have kinda been a mainstay in my life for the last 25 years. I was 11 when Licensed to Ill came out (yeah, fuckers, I know I'm old), and remember getting that tape and keeping it secret from my parents because there was a news article on how raunchy they were and my parents forbid me from listening to them. If that's not an open invitation to listen to something, I don't know what is :)
They, along with Run DMC, Eric B and Rakim, Public Enemy, NWA, EPMD, and BDP were my intro into hip-hop. Granted, I don't listen to a lot of hip-hop anymore, but when I do, I go back to these groups (aside from a very select few newer artists today).
Paul's Boutique is and will always be my favorite Beasties' record. Although I love all of their stuff (putting Check Your Head and Ill Communication just behind PB), nothing ever topped that record for me. It remains my favorite hip-hop record to this day.
Unlike most groups that stick it out this long, their quality has never really waivered. They've never been afraid to try new things, or to speak out for and against things they're really passionate about. MCA was particularly outspoken, but I never felt he was being preachy - just standing up for what he believed in.
It sucks to think we'll never get anything more from the grand trio. I could always count on somtething fresh every five years or so, and now it's no more. At least I'm glad there's a ton of material I can share with my 9- and 7-year-old boys now, and what's even more fun is that they love it and they get it.