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The Beastie Boys FAQ

This FAQ is recommended reading for newcomers to the Usenet newsgroup alt.music.beastie-boys and the (once again defunct) Beastielist mailing list. It contains general information and, naturally, questions that have frequently been asked (and answered). It is considered good form and netiquette to be aware of these questions, so you don’t frustrate everyone by asking something that’s been asked by millions before you. For a complete discography, lyrics, and more visit the Beastie Boys Home Page.

The Beastie Boys FAQ has been maintained by brad s benjamin, since 1995. It was originally compiled and written by Brian Goddard. It is true and correct to the best of my knowledge, although I cannot offer any warranty or guarantee it’s accuracy (read at your own risk). Please send additions, corrections and suggestions to: beastie[at]moire[dot]com.

Table of Contents

  1. Beastie Boys
  2. Grand Royal
  3. X-Large
  4. Internet Resources
  5. Samples and References
  6. Non-English Language References and Translations
  7. Other Topics

Expand All

1. Beastie Boys

Officially, the Beastie Boys are three: Michael Diamond (aka Mike D), Adam Horovitz (aka King AdRock), and Adam Yauch (aka MCA, Nathanial Hornblower, Sir Stewart Wallace).

The original line-up (on Pollywog Stew), was Michael Diamond on vocals, Adam Yauch on bass, Kate Schellenbach (who is now in Luscious Jackson, the first band to get signed to the Beastie Boys’ Grand Royal record label) on drums, and John Berry (who went on to form Big Fat Love, on Grand Royal records) on guitar. John, Michael, and Kate started out in a band called The Young Aborigines, but after two gigs they broke up and, enlisting Adam Yauch, formed the original incarnation of the Beastie Boys. When Kate and John left the band, they picked up Adam Horovitz, the bass player for The Young and the Useless, who often opened for the Beastie Boys.

Today the Beastie Boys are made up of Michael Diamond (drums, vocals), Adam Horovitz (guitar, vocals), Adam Yauch (vocals, bass), Alfredo Ortiz (percussion), Mix Master Mike (turntables), Mark ‘Keyboard Money Mark’ Nishita (keyboard), and Amery ‘AWOL’ Smith (drums). Eric Bobo (now in Cypress Hill) and DJ Hurricane Wendell Fyte are no longer part of the Beastie Boys.

For more information, please visit the All Music Guide.

Last modified on Monday, July 7, 2003

According to Michael Diamond it stands for Boys Entering Anarchistic States Towards Internal Excellence.

Last modified on Sunday, June 8, 2003

  • Adam Horovitz born October 31, 1966 (age 55)
  • Adam Yauch born August 5, 1964 (died May 4, 2012, age 47)
  • Mike Diamond born November 20, 1965 (age 56)

Last modified on Friday, May 4, 2012

Yes.
Mike Diamond has been married to director Tamra Davis since 1993.
Adam Yauch was married to Dechen Wangdu in 1998.
Adam Horovitz was married to actress Ione Skye in 1992, but divorced in 1999. In 2006 he married riot grrrl artist Kathleen Hanna.

Last modified on Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Although some say they look alike, and despite the fact that they share the same last name, the two Diamonds are not related. They are not related to Neil Diamond either. Dustin Diamond passed away from Stage 4 Lung Cancer on February 1, 2021.

Last modified on Monday, February 1, 2021

Mario Caldato

  • Beck, Devil’s Haircut and New Pollution singles (remixed song)
  • DFL, My Crazy Life, Proud To Be, Tony’s War (producer)
  • Mike Watt, Ball Hog or Tugboat, hollering on “Coincidence is Either Hit or Miss”
  • Mother Tounge, first album (producer)
  • Dassen 3, (producer)
  • John Spencer Blues Explosion, Remix Album (remixed song with Beck & Mike Diamond)
  • Soulfly, Soulfly, mixed “Bumba”
  • Cibo Matto, Super Relax, remixed “Sugar Water” with Mike Diamond
  • Plane Hemp, Os Caes Ladram e a Caravana Passa, producer

Michael Diamond

  • DJ Hurricane, The Hurra, raps on “Four Fly Guys”, co-wrote “Can’t Trust a Nigga on Dope”
  • Mike Watt, Ball Hog or Tugboat, sings on “Ball Hog or Tug Boat”
  • Milk, Never Dated EP (drums)
  • John Spencer Blues Explosion, Remix Album (remixed song with Beck and Mario Caldato)
  • Cibo Matto, Super Relax, remixed “Sugar Water” with Mario Caldato
  • UNKLE, Psyence Fiction, raps on “The Knock”
  • Ben Lee, Something to Remeber Me By, drums on 2 Sisters
  • Big Fat Love, Hell House, drummer
  • Luscious Jackson, Fever In Fever Out, remixed “Why Do I Lie?” single version (not on album)
  • Bjork, , remixed “Army of Me”
  • A Small Circle Of Friends: Germs Tribute, Now I Hear The Laughter, sings with Puzzled Panthers
  • Ween, remixed Freedom of ’76 single titled Shaved Dog Mix

Adam Horovitz

  • BS2000, BS2000, bass programming
  • DFL, My Crazy Life, bass
  • DFL, Proud To Be, producer
  • DJ Hurricane, The Hurra, raps on “Four Fly Guys” and “Stick ’Em Up”, co-wrote “Shaftman”
  • DJ Hurricane, Severe Damage, produced the track Japanese Eyes
  • Mike Watt, Ball Hog or Tugboat, drums, guitar and hollering on “Coincidence is Either Hit or Miss”
  • Milk, Never Dated EP
  • The Young and the Useless, Real Men Don’t Floss EP

Mark Nishita

  • Money Mark, Mark’s Keyboard Repair, Push The Button, Mark On The Mic, The Third Version EP and various singles, like Insects Are All Around Us, Hand In Your Head, Maybe I’m Dead
  • John Spencer Blues Explosion, Now I Got Worry
  • Ben Lee, Something to Remeber Me By, piano and organ
  • DJ Hurricane, The Hurra
  • The Cable Guy Soundtrack w/Porno for Pyros
  • Banyan, member of band for first album

Amery Smith

  • Buccinator
  • Suicidal Tendencies, Original Drummer
  • BS2000, BS2000

Adam Yauch

  • DJ Hurricane, The Hurra, raps on “Four Fly Guys”
  • Yoko Ono/IMA, Rising Mixes The Source by ABA Allstars
  • Big Fat Love, Hell House, produced

Last modified on Thursday, July 10, 2003

Adam Horovitz has appeared in Lost Angels (1989), A Kiss Before Dying (1991), Roadside Prophets (1992), and the TV movie Long Road Home (1991).

Michael Diamond has appeared in Over Exposed (1984).

All three Beastie Boys have appeared together in Krush Groove (1985) the Run-DMC movie, Tougher Than Leather (1988), the documentary Free Tibet, and Matt Groening’s television cartoon Futurama.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

They are (l to r) AWOL, Eric Bobo, Mike D., Mark Nishita, MCA, Ad Rock, DJ Hurricane, and Mario Caldato, Jr.

Last modified on Thursday, July 10, 2003

The Beastie Boys are now touring with super-DJ Mix Master Mike. No DAT player to be used during the show. For background on Mix Master Mike, check the official site of the Invisibl Skratch Piklz. Mix Master Mike has an LP coming out on Asphodel Records in July. See their site for details.    (excerpt from the Hello Nasty FAQ)

Word is that DJ Hurricane is merely taking time off to work on his own musical endeavors. He’s just put out a second solo album in Europe, and did open for the Beastie Boys in Atlanta.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

2. Grand Royal

Grand Royal (that’s ROY’-AL, rhymes with loyal, NOT Roy-ale’) was the Beastie Boys’ very own independent record label, which shut it‘s doors in 2001. Although Capitol Records did some of their distribution, Grand Royal was not a subsidiary.

Grand Royal also published a magazine under the same name. Grand Royal has requested that you visit their site for frequently asked questions and more.

The last known Grand Royal FAQ is archived at https://moire.com/beastieboys/archive/grandroyal-faq/

Last modified on Thursday, July 10, 2003

The Beastie Boys came up with the name Grand Royal while they were in the studio with Biz Markee recording Check Your Head. Whenever they would play something good, The Biz would refer to it as “Grand Royal... Guaranteed Fresh.” The Beastie Boys thought it would be a good name for their label, and so they stayed with it.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

3. X-Large

X-Large is a chain of clothing stores. Contrary to popular belief, the Beastie Boys do not own X-Large, but Mike D *is* one of its investors. Visit their website at: www.xlarge.com.

Last modified on Thursday, July 10, 2003

In an effort to save trees, X-Large no longer maintains a mailing list for periodic catalog mailings. For a current catalog and contact information, visit their website at: www.xlarge.com.

Last modified on Thursday, July 10, 2003

You can find a current list of X-Large stores on the X-Large website at:www.xlarge.com/locations.asp.

Last modified on Thursday, July 10, 2003

4. Internet Resources

Yes, the Official Beastie Boys home page can be found at www.beastieboys.com.

The site is currently maintained by the ian c rogers, the man, the myth, the MACK. Please direct all correspondence regarding the site to irogers[at]fistfulayen[dot]com.

Last modified on Wednesday, July 9, 2003

The Beastie Boys Mailing List (Beastielist) is no longer maintained.

Last modified on Wednesday, March 31, 2021

alt.music.beastie-boys is the internet Usenet newsgroup for discussion of the Beastie Boys. If you have access to Usenet and you don't get a.m.b-b, then ask your system administrator to add it. That is usually all it takes.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

The screen saver was once available on Capitol Records' website at hollywoodandvine.com, back around 1994. It is no longer available, and likely does not work on today's operating systems. Don't worry, you aren't missing anything anyway.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

Guitar tablature for some Beastie Boys songs is avaliable by anonymous FTP at: ftp.leo.org in the directory pub/rec/music/guitar/songs/olga/b/beastie_boys/. For more information refer to the On-Line Guitar Archive Home Page.

Tablature for the following songs were avaliable at the last revision to this document:

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

Full-length music videos for many of the Beastie Boys songs can be found at the Beastie Boys home page at www.beastieboys.com.

You’ll need a RealVideo player to view the videos. The free player may be downloaded at www.real.com.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

5. Samples and References

There is a mighty large Samples and References list for Paul’s Boutique available at paulsboutique.info. Check there. If it’s not there, it hasn’t been posted to the net. If you have additions to this wonderful community effort, please send them in.

Last modified on Friday, November 17, 2006

No, that is the sound of the cuica, a percussive instrument.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

That’s Timmy Sommers from Noise the Show, a punk rock radio show from back in the Beasties' early days. Timmy also appears between tracks on Some Old Bullshit. In this particular line, he is paraphrasing what Henry Rollins says at the end of the Black Flag song, "Six Pack." Timmy Sommers also appears in Tougher Than Leather.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

After the release of Ill Communication, a ringer t-shirt was made available with this quote written on it. The line is, according to (usselvidge[at]msuvx1.memphis[dot]edu), "Jeff Spicoli's parting words of reconciliation to his ball-breaking history teacher in the film Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)." Jeff Spicoli is played by Sean Penn. The van on the shirt, however bears no resemblance to the one Spicoli smokes marijuna inside during the movie.

RudeSkinOi[at]aol[dot]com adds this, regarding an 'herbal-reference': Mr. hand was ultimately convinced that everyone is on dope - POT. During the movie, one can witness Spicoli and his buds (friends that is) getting stoned in various locations including the van and his own bathroom just moments before the school dance. The point that I'm trying to make is that possibly the [Beastie Boys] used the Mr. Hand reference on the back of the t-shirt was a sort of joke amongst pot heads who were in their teens or pre-teens when that movie came out.

Last modified on Wednesday, July 9, 2003

6. Non-English Language References and Translations

"Allo allo, c'est un message pour Adam bon Adam, tu n'es pas la mais qu'est-ce tu fabriques? C'est Stephanie Violaine."

Translation: "Hello hello, this is a message for Adam OK Adam, you're not there but what are you doing/making? It's Stephanie Violaine.....I hope you learn how to speak french, 'cos I was saying crazy bullshit about you...one second ago." (provided by Jason Nicol, me91jpn[at]brunel.ac[dot]uk)

Only the Grand Royal and non-U.S. releases of Ill Communication contain this. The U.S. domestic Capitol releases do not. This is due to the fact that the owner of the voice did not appreciate hearing herself on the record without her permission.

Last modified on Wednesday, July 9, 2003

"Az ma az ma hata rotse, rotse? Lirhot ta'Beastie Boys be hofaha rotse! Behod shavoha hem yofihu kan, az techef nesader po special lichvodam. Special Beastie Boys be yom shishi, yom shishi chatsot! Likrat boham la'harets, shahataim him a'Beastie Boys, be yom shishi hasara be merts, Galts chatsot, yeah..."

Translation:"So, What'cha what'cha want? To see Beastie Boys live that's what I want. In one week time they'll show here, so soon we'll fix a special for them. Special Beastie Boys on Friday, Friday midnight! Towards their arrival to our country, two hours with the Beastie Boys, Friday the tenth of March, IDF (Israeli Defense Force) station midnight, yeah ..." (provided by Gil Beresteanu, beastie[at]math.tauac[dot]il)

Last modified on Wednesday, July 9, 2003

'Aglio E Olio' the name of the hardcore EP released in 1995, is Italian for 'garlic and oil'.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

‘Le Son Hip du Monde Hop’ is translated as ‘The Hip Sound of the Hop World!’.

Les Beasties Boys. Le group sensationel ‘bad-boy’ americain. Un des premiers voyageurs de hip hop, ils ont connu pour un mix de humeur et style. Avec leur beer swilling et glue sniffing ‘tactiques Brechtienne’, ils ont ecrit leur signature definitive sur le face du rap.

Le prix? Le succes multi-platinum, et l’estime universelle. Pas mal pour les trois punks de New York. Mais comme tous les grands artistes, ils continuent a explorer les frontieres. Avec ce nouveau disque: la renaissance de l’instrumentation traditionelle, la decouverte de la version instrumentale. Et sans doute, leur capacite a liberer chaque instrument de musique de l’esclavage impose par la voix humaine ‘signe et signifie’.

Translation: The Beastie Boys. The sensational American bad boy group. One of the first hip hop voyagers, they are known for their mix of humour and style. With their beer swilling and glue sniffing (Brechtian tactics), they have put their definitive signatures on rap.

The prize? Multi-platinum succes and universal acclaim. Not bad for the three New York punks. But like all great artists, they continue to explore the frontiers. With the new record: the rebirth of traditional instrumentation, the rediscovery of the instrumental version. And without a doubt, their capacity to liberate each musical instrument from the slavery imposed by the human voice in both the physical and abstract.
(provided by Job de Wit, jobwit[at]vpro[dot]nl)

Last modified on Wednesday, July 9, 2003

Hubo una vez un gran rey que tenía muchas tierras, un castillo y también un amor.

Translation: There was once a great king who had many lands, a castle, and also a love.
(provided by Midori Yasuda, midori.yasuda[at]nyu[dot]edu)

Last modified on Wednesday, July 9, 2003

7. Other Topics

According to the film, The Scenario was originally slated to be on Licensed To Ill, but DefJam, their label at the time, deemed it too explicit. It has yet to be released by any label, nor was it released on the soundtrack. Nevertheless, a bit of it is featured in a scene during the movie, and rumor has it that the song was widely bootlegged in Los Angeles. The song also appears with "I'm Down" and naughtier versions of some released "Licensed To Ill" songs on the bootleg, "Original Ill".

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

The Milarepa Fund is a foundation established in May 1994 by the Beastie Boys in the hope of promoting universal compassion through music. Its aim is to assist organizations working throughout the world with people such as the Tibetans, Native Americans, and the aboriginal peoples of the South Pacific."

For more information on their current activities, as well as information about joining the economic boycott on Chinese goods, visit their site at www.milarepa.org.

The Milarepa Fund
347 Dolores Street, Suite 206
San Francisco, CA 94110
Phone: 1-888-MILAREPA (Toll Free)

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

The cassette version of Paul’s Boutique was released in a number of different colored cassette housings. Some of the colors include: red, green, yellow, blue, black, clear, brown, and white.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

Brass Monkey is a really cheap (and tasty) alcoholic drink, usually sold alongside the likes of Cicso, Mad Dog, and Thunderbird. According to "The Complete Bartender" Brass Monkey consists of: 1/2 oz. vodka, 1/2 oz. light rum, and orange juice. To mix, fill a highball glass with ice, add vodka, rum and orange juice, then stir.

The original definition of a brass monkey comes from gunships which had cannons that shot one cannonball at a time. For quite some time, young children were enlisted to fetch cannonballs, and they were dubbed 'monkeys'. However, there was a slight glitch when children were forced to attend school and child labor was outlawed. The 'monkeys' were replaced with brass chutes which carried the balls, and they were named 'brass monkeys'. When it got really cold, the brass would contract and the balls would be 'squeezed' and fall off. That is where the expression "cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey" comes from.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

A Cookie Puss is an ice cream cake made by an ice cream store called Carvel (similar to Baskin-Robbins or Dairy Queen). If you listen to the song, you can hear that one of the women who answers the phone picks up and says "Hello, Carvel".

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

Quasar *is* the Beastie Boys. Basically it was a way of them being able to do some small punk shows again, without the hassles of a thousands of fans and big tours, indeed a special treat for those that reqularly go to small clubs or go out to see unheard-of bands.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

No, MCA is still with the Beastie Boys, and they have not broken up.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

That would be none other than Adam Yauch.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

UPDATE: A current list of movie sountracks can be found at IMDB.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

The codes only work on the NBA Jam: Tournament Edition, and can be found at Game Sages. Codes are available for:

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

When held up to a mirror so that you are able to read it backwards in the mirror, it should be easy to read the words ‘EAT ME’. Many claim that the MTA also has significance as to where the Beastie Boys went to school when they were younger, Yeshiva University High School for boys (a/k/a MTA), a private Jewish school in Washington Heights.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

The original version of the song was slated to be an Ill Communication B-side, it was then supposed to be released on the now-defunct CD-ROM, then on the Beastie Boys' own website. After none of these happened, the band kept the chorus and wrote an entirely new song around it, releasing it on Hello Nasty.

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003

The original working title for the ablum was 'Don't Be a Faggot'. In 1999, Ad Rock wrote a letter to Time Out New York, in which he apologized publicly for their homophobic past, stating "I would like to ... formally apologize to the entire gay and lesbian community for the shitty and ignorant things we said on our first record, 1986's Licensed to Ill. ... There are no excuses. But time has healed our stupidity. ... We hope that you'll accept this long overdue apology."

Last modified on Saturday, May 31, 2003