Adam Yauch was a founding member of the Beastie Boys, an unlikely trio of Jewish kids from New York who gained popularity and respect in music's hip-hop world. After a successful career that lasted more than 30 years, he died of cancer on May 4, 2012, at the age of 47.
Formed as a hardcore punk bank in 1979, the Beastie Boys transitioned to hip hop in 1984. Their 1986 album, Licensed to Ill, was the first rap album to be #1 on the Billboard album chart. The first song this writer ever heard by the group was, (You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (To Party!), from this album. The Beastie Boys became the third rap group inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April of 2012, following Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, and Run-D.M.C.
For many fans, the Beastie Boys' lyrics were always the main attraction. Sports enthusiasts are aware that the group referenced the New York Knicks a number of times over the years. They also referred, by name, to at least three professional baseball players.
Baseball Players in Lyrics
From the song, Hey Ladies, on the 1989 album Paul's Boutique:
"There's more to me than you'll ever know
And I've got more hits than Sadaharu Oh"
Song, What Comes Around, 1989 album Paul's Boutique:
"Bum cheese on rye with ham and prosciutto
Got more Louie than Phil Rizzuto"
Song, Sure Shot, 1994 album Ill Communication:
"I've got more action than my man John Woo
And I've got mad hits like I was Rod Carew"
New York Mets
On Friday night, May 4th, the New York Mets honored Adam Yauch by having Beastie Boys' songs playing as each of their hitters walked up to the plate. From lead-off hitter, Ruben Tejada, walking to Intergalactic; to Body Movin' playing for the ninth man in their lineup, Dillon Gee; it was an enjoyable tribute.
An avid baseball fan for nearly 50 years, Harold Andrews has enjoyed many Beastie Boys songs through the years.