Sunday Cinema | Beastie Boys Hang With MTV In 1992

Considering the commercial success the Beastie Boys achieved at the beginning of their career with Licence To Ill in 1986 and after breaking through to the mainstream again in 1994 with Ill Communication and most of the albums that followed, it's hard to believe there was a time when the pioneering hip-hop group were labeled commercial disappointments. While Paul's Boutique is now considered a masterpiece, in the first few years after its 1989 release sales of the album paled in comparison to what Licence To Ill sold. The Beasties reinvented themselves, not only studio-wise, but also as a live act in the early '90s as they picked up their instruments once more to create Check Your Head.

Check Your Head was eventually embraced by music fans spanning multiple genres including alt-rock listeners thanks to the diverse sounds presented on the 20-track effort. On May 20, 1992, at a time when the soon-to-be festival headliners were playing venues holding about 1,000 fans, the Beastie Boys appeared on Hangin' With MTV, a new cable TV program. Hangin' With MTV, which was beamed out live over the cable network each weekday afternoon, featured a pair of hosts introducing popular music videos, presenting live performances and conducting interviews, all in front of a live audience. Many episodes of Hangin' With MTV were livened up with a house band which would perform leading up to and out of commercial breaks, in addition to playing full songs for the broadcast. Soundgarden, Phish, Faith No More and the Beastie Boys were among the acts to serve as house band for an episode of Hangin' With MTV during its brief existence in 1992.

The Beastie Boys wound up performing nine songs during their visit to Hangin' With MTV, though those at home only saw portions of most tunes. All but one of those songs featured the Beasties on instruments with Mike D. on drums, Ad-Rock on guitar and MCA on bass (plus DJ Hurricane, percussionist Drew Lawrence and Mark Nishita on keys). Video of the NYC natives appearance on Hangin' With MTV has surfaced and is well-worth the watch for the intense "Gratitude," the hardcore days throwback "Time For Livin'" and the flash and swerve of "So What'cha Want." There's even a brief cover of "Iron Man" and a nifty instrumental jam. Ch-ch-check it out:

So What'cha Want > Interview > Groove Holmes > Pow > In 3's > Instrumental Jam > Iron Man > Hurricane Vocal Track > Gratitude > Time For Livin'

[Published on: 6/22/14]

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