Adam Yauch of the Beastie Boys Dead at 47

Adam Yauch of the Beastie Boys Dead at 47
Adam Yauch of the Beastie Boys has had a much-publicized battle with cancer in recent years, and now the rapper also known as MCA has reportedly passed away. He was 47.

This sad news comes via Russell Simmons' website Global Grind. TMZ apparently confirmed Yauch's passing with people otherwise linked to the rapper.

The cause of death hasn't been officially confirmed, but Global Grind claims that it's due to cancer. It was previously believed that his cancer was improving, although he revealed last year that he was still undergoing treatment.

UPDATE: A statement from the Beastie Boys confirms that Yauch died of cancer. Go to the group's official website to read the tribute.

Yauch was born in Brookyln and co-founded the Beastie Boys in the late '70s as a hardcore punk band. They eventually transitioned into hip-hop, and found fame with their debut LP, 1986's Licensed to Ill. Subsequent albums such as Paul's Boutique (1989) and Ill Communication (1994) were also massive successes. The band's biggest hits included "Sabotage," "(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party)," and "Intergalactic." Yauch directed some of the group's music videos under the moniker Nathanial Hörnblowér.

In 2009, reports emerged Yauch was being treated for a cancerous parotid gland and a lymph node. This news delayed the arrival of the Beastie Boys' latest album, which was eventually released as Hot Sauce Committee Part Two in 2011.

Yauch is survived by his wife Dechen Wangdu and daughter Tenzin Losel Yauch.