It would seem nearly impossible to
retell the history of the Beastie Boys without mentioning
Run DMC. Run DMC, which is comprised of Joe "Run"
Simmons, Darryl McDaniels, and Jam Master Jay, was never
a Def Jam group. However, they were managed by Run's brother
Russell Simmons as part
of the Rush Entertainment stable of artists.
In 1986, the Beastie Boys were slated
to open for Run DMC on the Raising Hell tour. It was at
this point that DJ Hurricane
left the Run DMC crew and became DJ for the Beastie Boys.
The tour lived up to its name when concert violence erupted
in Los Angeles. A dark media shadow was cast upon the remainder
of the tour. By the winter of 1987, Licensed
to Ill had begun to gain momentum on the charts.
To further promote the album and push sales even higher,
Run DMC and the Beastie Boys embarked on the Together Forever
The Run DMC and Beastie Boys connection is far more than
just a few months of life on the road together. For example,
the song "Slow and Low" was originally a Run DMC
track that was lyrically adapted to work into the Beastie
Boys' release. More than one journalist made the comparison
that the Beastie Boys were just a white version of Run DMC.
Whether that was fair to either act or not was never a journalistic
The Beastie Boys' Licensed to
Ill has out sold any Run DMC release to this date. Although
Run DMC still has a loyal following, gone are the days of
them headlining concerts over the Beastie Boys. Both acts
shared the same stage during the 1999 Tibetan Freedom Concert.
Fans of both groups were excited when the guest star packed
Run DMC album Crown Royal was rumored to feature
a long overdue song between the two groups. Supposedly Adam
Horovitz pulled out of the project, when he came to
the decision that the album was going to turn out very different
than how he thought it originally was going to.
Sadly, on October 30th, 2002 Jam Master Jay, born Jason
Mizell, was murdered while working in a studio. The Beastie
Boys and Run DMC performed a
concert in Las Vegas to benefit Jay's family thereafter.