Shalom Life | May 22, 2015

The Beastie Boys’ Adam Yauch: Not Just a Talented Musician

Adam Yauch aka MCA was known for his profound philanthropy work and aid in Tibet.

By: Ashley Baylen

Published: May 4th, 2012 in Culture » Society » News

The Beastie Boys’ Adam Yauch: Not Just a Talented Musician

By this time, we have all heard about the devastating loss of Beastie Boys’ legend, Adam Yauch. We have discussed his pivotal role in hip-hop, his recent induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and all of his essential contributions to the music industry over the last 30+ years. But Yauch was not only an entertainer; he was a practicing Buddhist and important voice in the Tibetan independence movement.

The Tibetan Independence movement believes in the political separation from China. Many celebrities and Tibetan Buddhists rally to support this cause internationally, with Yauch at the frontlines.

Yauch created the Milarepa Fund; a non-profit organization completely devoted to Tibetan Independence, and also used his influence in the music world to organize several benefit concerts to support the cause.

Yauch and his fellow Beastie Boys, Michael Diamond (Mike D), Adam Horovitz (Ad-Rock) and Michael Schwartz (Mix Master Mike), hosted a series of concerts called ‘Tibetan Freedom Concerts’ between 1996 and 2003. Their first concert was held in San Francisco and featured Red Hot Chili Peppers, Bjork, Smashing Pumpkins, Rage Against the Machine, and many other popular bands of the time. In that first year, over 100,000 people attended and over $800,000 was raised for the Tibetan cause. Over the 7 years that Yauch and the Beastie Boys held these concerts, millions of people became aware of the Tibetan Independence Movement, which led to international expansion of the grassroots network, Students For a Free Tibet.

Adam Yauch will be dearly missed. As Ben Stiller said on Twitter today, Yauch “stood for integrity as an artist.”

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