The Beastie Boys' 1986 "Licensed to Ill" was my introduction to hip-hop.
And what made me decide to pick up the album featuring the Brooklyn-based hard-core hip-hoppers? It was entirely based upon a Rolling Stone magazine review headline.
The headline read: "Three Idiots Create a Masterpiece."
This pretty much summed up the affection I still have for Michael Diamond (Mike D.), Adam Horowitz (Ad-Rock) and the late Adam Lauch (MCA).
As I grew up, I came to appreciate old school East Coast hip-hop royalty like Wu-Tang Klan and west coasters like N.W.A.
But through their lyrics, the Beastie Boys name-checked everything from random Saturday morning cartoon characters like Magilla Gorilla ("Hey Ladies," Paul's Boutique); while paying homage to Dr. Seuss' Little Cindy Lou Who ("B-Boys Makin' With the Freak Freak," Ill Communication); and dissing two separate landlords from the classically cheesy sitcom "Three's Company" (Mr. Roper in Paul's Boutique's "3-Minute Rule" and Mr. Furley in "Oh Word?" from To the 5 Boroughs).
These boys of Beastie persuasion are largely responsible for me becoming an entertainment writer.
And will I be in the audience when "My Posse in Effect -- A Tribute to the Beastie Boys" hit the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino's Anthem state at 8 p.m. Friday? You betcha.
No matter how old I'll get, "Licensed to Ill" will still take me back to the skinny, awkward kid I was as a teenager.
After all, I Gotta Fight for My Right to Party," don't I?
Here are my favorite, random pop cultural references from Beastie Boys song lyrics:
Alas, "Barney Miler" star (and candy bar shill) Abe Vigoda is now quite dead (we think) but he's been immortalized in the Beastie's "Posse in Effect" from Licensed to Ill. In case you were wondering, this song also referenced Jerry Lewis, the Smurfs and Bullwinkle J. Moose.
"Cone of Silence"
A running gag from the 1960s sitcom "Get Smart," the "Cone of Silence" was name-checked in "We Got The" from To the 5 Boroughs. So was Gandhi, MLK and the Christian Coalition.
The baritone host of TV's "Soul Train" got the Beastie Boy treatment in "Flute Loop" from Ill Communication. So did the NBA's Patrick Ewing and Victoria's Secrets stores.
An unlikely 1970s sex symbol (due to "The Six Million Dollar Man") the former Mr. Farrah Fawcett-Majors was the subject of "Lee Majors Come Again" from Hot Sauce Committee, Part Two.
Lovey and Thurston Howell III
Remember the "millionaire and his wife" from "Gilligan's Island'?" The Beastie Boys do. That's why the two of them can be found on "The Grasshopper United (Keep Movin')" from Hello Nasty.
A comedienne now mostly known for her game show appearances, Phyllis Diller got her shout-out in Licensed to Ill's "Time to Get Ill."