In absolutely devastating news, Adam Yauch, also known as MCA, of the legendary group Beastie Boys, passed away at the age of 47 earlier today (May 4).

It was in 2009 when Yauch announced that he had begun treatment for cancer of his parotid gland and one lymph node. The rapper went through surgery and radiation therapy to battle his ailment, delaying the release of 'Hot Sauce Committee' and the group's tour.

A statement from Beastie Boys' publicist reads, "It is with great sadness that we confirm that musician, rapper, activist and director Adam 'MCA' Yauch ... passed away in his native New York City this morning after a near-three-year battle with cancer. He was 47 years old." A full statement from the Beastie Boys' management team can be seen here.

As a member of the Beastie Boys, Yauch helped bring rap to the mainstream in the '80s with their mega-selling debut album 'Licensed to Ill.' The band evolved over the years, delivering eclectic and critically acclaimed discs like 'Paul's Boutique' and 'Check Your Head' to the world. Their impact on rock is equally great, with such songs as 'No Sleep Till Brooklyn' and 'Sabotage' continuing to get major airplay on rock radio stations to this day. And just a few weeks ago, the Beasties were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Rest in Peace, MCA. Your music enriched the lives of millions. Join us in paying tribute to the life of Adam Yauch by leaving your messages of condolence in the comments section below.

Update: Several rockers, incuding Slash, Linkin Park, Godsmack, Disturbed and more, have reacted to the death of Adam Yauch. Click here to see what they had to say in tribute to the late Beastie Boys rapper.


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