Rapper ADAM YAUCH aka MCA of the BEASTIE BOYS has died at 47.
Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons confirmed the sad news to AP
Simmons' Def Jam label released the Beastie Boys' first album, "Licensed to Ill."
Yauch was diagnosed with a cancerous parotid gland in 2009. He had undergone surgery and radiation.
Yauch hadn't performed in public since then and was notably absent when the Beastie Boys were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last month.
Yauch co-founded the group with friends Michael "Mike D" Diamond and Adam "Ad Rock" Horovitz in 1979 as a punk band, before moving into rap in the mid-80s.
Yauch was born an only child in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Frances and Noel Yauch, a painter and architect.
Throughout high school, he taught himself to play the bass guitar, and formed the Beastie Boys. They played their first show, then still a hardcore punk band on his 17th birthday, while still attending Edward R. Murrow High School in the Midwood neighborhood of Brooklyn.
Yauch attended Bard College for two years before dropping out.
Two years later, at the age of 22, the Beastie Boys, now performing as a hip-hop trio, released their first album "Licensed to Ill" on Def Jam Records.
Yauch is survived by a wife and daughter.