Licensed to Ill  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Licensed to Ill is the debut album by the Beastie Boys, released in 1986.

It was the first rap LP to top Billboard's Pop Albums chart. It also peaked at #2 on the Top Hip Hop/R&B Albums chart. It is Columbia Records' fastest selling debut record to date and sold over five million copies.

Background

Kerry King of Slayer made an appearance on the album playing lead guitar on "(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party)" and "No Sleep till Brooklyn", and appeared in the music video, which is a parody of heavy metal music. The name of the song itself is a spoof on Motörhead's No Sleep 'til Hammersmith album. King's appearance on the track came about because Rick Rubin was producing both bands simultaneously (Slayer's Reign in Blood was originally released on Def Jam).

The full album cover, front to back, features a Boeing 727 — with "Beastie Boys" emblazoned on the tail — crashing head-on into the side of a mountain. The tail of the plane has the Def Jam logo and the legend '3MTA3' which spells 'EATME' when viewed in a mirror.

The original title for this album was Don't Be a Faggot but Columbia Records flatly refused to release the album with this title and pressured Russell Simmons (their manager and label Def Jam head) into having the Beastie Boys to come up with another name. Adam Horovitz has since apologized for the band's earlier title.

Music videos were made for the songs "(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party)", "No Sleep Til Brooklyn", "Hold It Now, Hit It" and "She's Crafty".



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Licensed to Ill" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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