According To Beastie Boys' New Book, Capitol Records Wanted Them To Do An MC Hammer Diss
“They had us sit down with their ‘street team’ to figure out how to get the word out to ‘the streets,'” Adam Horovitz recalled in an excerpt from the Beastie Boys Book.
An excerpt from the Beastie Boys Book has been released via Vulture, where the Beastie Boys‘ Adam Horovitz and Michael Diamond recount recording (and then re-recording) Paul’s Boutique, and the challenges they faced following its release from label Capitol Records.
There’s one really standout part from the excerpt, where Horovitz recalls the time when Capitol’s street team suggested that the group make a diss record about MC Hammer.
“…Capitol brought us in for a marketing meeting to launch the record. They had us sit down with their ‘street team’ to figure out how to get the word out to ‘the streets,'” Horovitz says before elaborating further.
“The street team had a plan. They had been given the title Street Awareness Program. And so on their presentation paperwork it spelled out S-A-P in big letters across the top of each page. Already funny. SAP, SAP, SAP. Their marketing plan was for us to make a diss record against MC Hammer,” he says. “They said that diss records always get some kind of attention, and ’cause Hammer was so huge, that’d be great. Oh, and that because Hammer was also on Capitol Records, it’d be easy to contact him to let him know that it wasn’t for real. We told the saps that we’d never met Hammer and had nothing against him, and that he seemed like a nice enough guy. Maybe we should just try to get the songs on the radio and in clubs and stuff instead. To be fair…me, Adam, and Mike were sitting in that meeting obviously high as kites and dressed in our best Madilyn Grasshoff outfits, looking like we were on our way to a Cymande concert. I’m sure the lack of confidence was mutual.”
In regards to recording Paul’s Boutique, the two remaining Beastie Boys members recall making the demos “in a shitty apartment in the middle of a drug-and-prostitution zone,” only to finish the project at the Record Plant, where the guys also ended up meeting members of Guns N’Roses.
Read the excerpt here.
The Beastie Boys Book will be released on October 30 via publishers Spiegel and Grau.