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Public Enemy

Few bands have changed the course of music and entertainment in the way that the Beastie Boys and Public Enemy have. Chuck D and Flavor Flav have been Public Enemy from the beginning, and whether Terminator X is behind the turntables or not, the jams have always been educational and hard hitting.

Although the popularity of Public Enemy has declined in recent years, with the emergence of highly commercial hip hop for the masses, PE still remains cutting edge and the fact that they are more underground now makes their departure from Def Jam that much cooler.

It was Chuck D who Russell Simmons entrusted with the task of making the as of yet unreleased 1989 Def Jam Beastie Boys album The White House. The story goes that Chuck was asked to work on adding a wall of sound to what were left over rhymes and unfinished songs that the Beastie Boys had recorded for Def Jam during the Licensed to Ill days. Yet once Chuck listened to Paul's Boutique, he declined to continue the White House project. Some people speculate that the album was finished; others say it was never more than just talk. Obviously some of the leftovers from Licensed to Ill include: I'm Down, The Scenario and Desperado, which have all appeared on unlicensed releases in recent years.

It was also Chuck D, who because of his long history with the Beastie Boys, was asked to present the band with the MTV Video Vanguard award. You may also recall that it was Flavor Flav who joined the Beastie Boys on stage in 1994 when the band played in New York during the Lollapalooza tour. Both bands have shared the stage more than a few times, but it was Chuck D's spoken word appearances at the 1999 Mumia Benefit and the 1997 Tibetan Freedom Concerts that prompted many newer Beastie Boys fans to ask the question....who is this guy?

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