Beastie Boys

  • Year:
  • Inducted by:
    Chuck D (Public Enemy) & LL Cool J
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Although the Beastie Boys first found fame as a rude 'n' crude party band, the hip-hop pioneers eventually settled into a more conscious groove driven by clever wordplay, inventive genre splicing and elaborate videos.

Still, the New York trio weren't afraid to evolve or experiment—in fact, each one of their albums sounded different—and they became known as vocal supporters of social causes and global issues.

Hall of Fame Essay


Alan Light

The Beastie Boys altered the direction of popular music at least three times, and lived to tell the tale.

Their 1986 debut album, Licensed to III, was the first hip-hop album to reach Number One on the charts, and did more than any other recording to introduce the genre to the suburban masses. Paul’s Boutique, the 1989 follow-up, is generally considered the pinnacle of hip-hop’s golden era of sampling, and is still viewed as one of the finest rap albums ever made.

The Beasties’ third album, 1992’s Check Your Head, solidified a truce between the worlds of hip-hop and alternative rock, creating a kind of global hipster coalition that cast a decade-long shadow.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Program Cover 2012
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There’s no adequate measure for the impact that The Beastie Boys had on rap music
Chuck D



Photography: Getty/WireImage