John Berry, who was an original member of the Beastie Boys, has passed away at the age of 52. Most people might not know about Berry, since he was out of the band already when the Beastie Boys started getting exposure, but he was the first guitarist of the group.
According to his family, Berry suffered from frontal lobe dementia and his condition had worsened over the last year. Berry was a classmate of Beastie Boy member Mike Diamond and the two started the band together in high school, which played hardcore punk at the time.
Berry also played guitar on the group’s first ever release, the seven-inch EP called “Polly Wog Stew,” which came out in 1982.
Berry is the second member of the original lineup to die young recently. The first Beastie Boys member to die was Adam Yauch, who died of cancer at the age of 47 several years ago.