I’m very sad to hear the news of Adam Yauch’s death. It doesn’t feel right to me that someone who played such an important part in my youth is no longer with us. Forty-seven is really no age at all…

The Beastie Boys went a long way in defining modern American music as far as I’m concerned. Yeah, their first album was crass and adolescent, but what’s not to like? I took blows for listening to the Beastie Boys when Paul’s Boutique was first released but that album was pure revelation to me and it absolutely still holds up. It was always kind of difficult to discern what each member brought to the band but Paul's Boutique, in particular, is just a brilliant mix of hip-hop, rap, funk, disco, techno, the list goes on…one of the best mix tapes ever!

Check Your Head is really what defines the Beastie Boys for me, the moment when they were taken seriously for the very first time. I always thought is was incredibly brave of them to just do whatever the hell they wanted, having their own studio and turning their jams into gold. It’s just an incredible record and certainly one of the most listened to in my collection. 1993 just would not have been the same without it!

It’s always weird someone in a band dies and you feel personally affected by it. It just goes to show how a lot of us define ourselves by the music we listen to. I never met Adam Yauch and don’t have any personal connection to him other than the fact that Scott Walker: 30 Century Man was released on his Oscilloscope Laboratories label in the U.S. There was such amazing energy and pure joy in the music of the Beastie Boys that Adam Yauch’s passing at such an age feels totally wrong!

The Beastie Boys are probably the only band that virtually all my friends agree on, which shows the depth of their appeal. I always felt like they got a bad rap and I used to play them for people as much as I could, making mixes for friends without telling them who it was. The albums they made in the Nineties are about as good as anything else that was released that decade and it is very sad that some sort of golden era of youth has passed on with the death of Adam Yauch.

Adam Yauch The Beastie Boys

Beastie Boys