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Beastie Boy MCA helped prove power of music

  • Written by Myron Mays

The Beastie Boys were deservingly inducted in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame just weeks ago and now the trio is without one, Adam “MCA” Yauch, who died a cancer victim last Friday (May 3).

 
 Myron
Mays

The Beastie Boys were deservingly inducted in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame just weeks ago and now the trio is without one, Adam “MCA” Yauch, who died a cancer victim last Friday (May 3).

As a young hip-hop fan in the 7th grade, I absolutely loved the Beastie Boys. When I first heard them, I thought they were a group of wild guys who got into a lot of shenanigans.

Little did I know that these guys were not black. There was nothing that made me think otherwise. All the rappers I had known up until that point were black. Also, on their album cover, there was nothing that anyone could use to identify these guys by their color. There was only the tail end of an airplane on it.

I later read that this was done by design to make people focus on the music instead of their skin color. Ironically, this was actually done in the 50s and 60s to get black artists to crossover to white audiences. It worked for the Beastie Boys, with their first album, “License to Ill,” one of the greatest hip-hop albums ever recorded.

I was very shocked – along with a lot of other people – to discover that these kids were black. Not to say that it was necessarily a bad thing, but as a little black kid, this was mind blowing to say the least. However, it was too late to “unlike” the music. It only made us want more.

These guys were entertaining on record and off as well. I not only followed their music, I also followed their shenanigans and wild times (including their arrests) on and off the stage. They defied authority and broke the rules. This was very intriguing for a 13 year old.

It was like they knew who I was. I wanted to be rebellious. I wanted to be a “bad boy.” I didn’t wanna clean my room. I didn’t wanna come home when the street lights came on. I wanted to fight for my right to party…just like the Beastie Boys.

Looking back on things, it’s funny how a 7th grader from Memphis was influenced to be a bad boy by three Jewish kids from Brooklyn, N.Y. But that shows how the power of popular music works. Any message can be relayed by putting a catchy beat to it.

MCA was my favorite member of The Beastie Boys. Rest in Peace!

Sinbad at the Funny Bone


The entertainment at the Funny Bone Comedy Club at Harrah’s Casino just keeps getting better and better. This weekend you can catch Sinbad as he brings his brand of comedy to Tunica. Here’s a guy who never has to use profanities, but he is still very funny. That’s what you call “talent”. He will be performing this Friday, Saturday and Sunday (May 11-13). Get your tickets by visiting funnybonetunica.com.

Free publishing workshop


Are you a songwriter? Would you like to find out how to get your music published? The New Brass Ring is a two-part educational workshop on publishing scheduled for Saturday (May 12) at the Memphis Music Resource Center, 431 South Main.

The free workshop will begin at 1 p.m. It is suggested that attendees participate in the Publishing 101 session of the workshop as a prerequisite to part two. Artists interested in participating in the event are asked to RSVP at emipublishing.Eventbrite .com.

The Christian Business Expo


The Christian Business Expo showcases businesses, non-profits, ministries & corporations that are making a difference in their local communities. It takes place July 14 at the First Memphis Plaza located at 4466 Elvis Presley Blvd. There will be Live Entertainment, Prizes & Giveaways as well as a Kid’s Zone with Face Painting!

Admission is $5 and free for children 12 and under. You can call 901-451-9772 or 855-456-4475 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to purchase tickets.

(Got an event you’d like for me to cover or attend? Email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .)

 

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