Last week, at a screening of Frances Ha, we tried to get Ad-Rock talking about the Beastie Boys memoir he’s writing with Mike D. We got a little bit on that front, but were mostly just treated to his random thoughts on Sting, James Murphy, and The Face magazine. Here, a slightly condensed version of our conversation, including commentary from his lifelong friend, actress, and “Fight for Your Right to Party” star Nadia Dajani. She’s a delight.
How’s the memoir coming?
Adam Horovitz (Ad-Rock): We haven’t started yet. But we’re gonna.
Do you keep a diary or journal or anything? Do you have notes?
Nadia Dajani: But I have early scrapbooks, and I’m gonna give him a bunch of stuff. I saved a lot.
Like what? Magazine clippings, or?
AH: I got stuff. [To Nadia.] You have a memory, which I don’t.
ND: And I wrote everything down in early journals.
AH: Do you think that Sting [who was at the event to support his daughter, Mickey Sumner, who stars in Frances Ha] is thinking about weird sex right now?
It’s funny, when he and Trudie Styler [his wife] were on the carpet, all I could think was tantric sex. [They’ve talked openly about having it.]
AH: Or maybe ask him about the thing from the seventies that was like the Scorpio/Virgo, like the signs in the sex positions … the asterisk signs … the aster-al —
AH: Boom. I said asterisk.
ND: But also, [sex] for fourteen hours? I will set you on fire. Like, you gotta have time for breaks for snacks, YouTubing, some e-mailing. But then you’re going to talk to the world about how you have sex for fourteen hours? I’ll punch you in the face.
AH: Hey, mazel tov.
ND: I mean, if you can get it.
So you haven’t started the memoir yet, but you’re getting all the stuff out.
AH: It’s gonna be great. We got a long deadline, so we’re good.
When’s the deadline?
AH: I don’t know.
ND: Do you guys have a deadline?
AH: I don’t know. I’m assuming they will want it at a certain date, what with the money and all.
So what do you have — photos, magazines?
ND: I do have a lot of photos, and color slides, most of which I haven’t even looked at.
AH: We’ve been friends since kindergarten, off and on.
ND: Off and on. You jerk. Yeah, we grew up across the street from each other, and our older siblings were in school together and —
So you have the archive.
ND: I have some. The truth is — this is the truth, all snark aside: If I had known what their band was going to be, I probably would have really kept things. But who knew that they were gonna do so well?
AH: I’ve got a lot of stuff.
ND: You do? I felt like you lost a lot of stuff in moving.
AH: I still got stuff.
Was there a point when you started saving stuff because you thought you might do this one day?
AH: I always saved stuff that I thought was like — you know, [if] you’re gonna be in a magazine? That’s cool. When I was a kid, I collected The Face magazine, the British magazine. And then we were in The Face magazine! And so I got it. It was us, LL Cool J, some other motherfuckers in there, and I got so excited and opened it up and we’re in the gatefold, I’m in the crease. And I look like this [makes a face].
ND: You look like the circus clown whose face is deformed?
AH: And I have a nervous smile. It’s so bad.
ND: Was that your lip phase?
ND: He used to do this thing in the beginning where he would talk with his lip up, like that.
AH: Billy Idol.
About fifteen minutes later, Horovitz sees James Murphy and says, “There’s James Murphy. He owes me $150.” Dajani notes that Murphy’s giant tote looks like a diaper bag.
Why does he owe you $150?
AH: Well, he stayed at my apartment a long time ago and broke the refrigerator and didn’t get it fixed. I had to fix it.
How’d he break it?
AH: I don’t know! It was just broken. He stayed at my place, and I moved back in and the refrigerator didn’t work. I was like, “Dude, what’s up with the refrigerator?” He was like, “Oh yeah!” What kinda shit is that?
ND: The moral of the story is Don’t let James Murphy, with a diaper bag, near your house.
I actually did notice that bag.
ND: Al lright, I got a thing for you. Would you rather, blindfolded, reach into James Murphy’s diaper bag, or —
AH: Sting’s pants?
ND: Listen to Sting talk about his fourteen-hour tantric sex. Go!
ND: I did not think you were gonna choose Sting!
AH: Because I could fall asleep listening to Sting, and I could have a nice, long nap.
ND: But anything you could touch in James Murphy’s diaper bag is going to stay with you for a long time.
Sting is Mickey Sumner’s dad.
AH: Mykki Blanco?
ND: That’s Sting’s daughter! Oh, snap! That’s Sting and Trudie’s daughter.
AH: She has a reggae record. Someone told me she had a reggae record, years ago.
ND: No, they have another kid that’s a musician
AH: You know the rapper Mykki Blanco.
AH: Okay, just throwing that out there.
ND: Imagine your dad was Sting and you had to read about your dad having tantric sex for fourteen hours. I’d kill myself.
AH: Imagine if your dad was Stephen Tyler!