In seventh grade the girls bought “True Blue,” the guys “License to Ill.” Both albums were blasted at the end of the academic year party. Few guys owned the Madonna album — I owned both. In the summer of ’92 “Check Your Head” was inescapable. Same for “Sabotage” in the summer of ’94 and “Intergalactic” in the summer of ’98. Ach — no more Beastie boy summers.
“Adam Yauch” was his moniker. MCA is his name as far as I’m concerned. Obnoxious, voice steeped in Brooklyn, a sexist and homophobe (in music; I don’t know about life) , who matured more honestly — which is to say his fart jokes had Buddhist undertones — than most musicians of his generation. As Chuck Eddy, author of a seminal earlier review, said, “They were smart, arty Jewish kids from New York, and they created these white-trash burnout characters with the help of [Rick] Rubin. And they pulled it off.” And left at least three world-historic records.