Nine years after the campaign first began, efforts to rename a street corner in Manhattan “Beastie Boys Square” have now finally come to fruition. This is per Consequence, reporting on a post by the Beastieboysquare Instagram account, which broke the happy news this weekend.
The intersection, at Ludlow Street and Rivington Street in NYC, will be familiar to fans of the influential rap trio for a pretty simple reason: It’s the intersection pictured in the cover photo of the group’s 1989 sophomore album, Paul’s Boutique. (Itself a project in decade-long patience, with slow early sales and consumer confusion eventually giving way to double platinum status by 1999.)
The New York City Council approved the motion this week, after voting multiple times in the past against it, on the grounds that Mike D, MCA, and Ad-Rock hadn’t properly met the usual criteria for honorary naming (i.e., usually some measure of voluntary commitment to the area in question; we’d argue that 30 years of free advertising has to count for something, though.)
The New York Post quotes LeRoy McCarthy, one of the primary advocates for the change, who responded to the vote with a succinct reminder that, while it took a minute to get done, “hip-hop don’t stop.” McCarthy added, “It has been a long road to get Beastie Boys Square accomplished, but I am happy to see New York government formally embracing the indigenous arts and culture of hip hop, and the street sign is very appropriate because hip hop is from the NYC streets.”
Beastie Boys Square is one of several honorary namings approved by the Council this week, although, as far as we know, it’s the only one celebrating the concept of no sleep ‘til council recognition. The news comes as the surviving members of the Beastie Boys gear up for the 30th anniversary of the group’s third album, Check Your Head, with a vinyl re-release next month.