When the Beastie Boys enter into the Video Vanguard at Thursday night's Video Music Awards, they will be introduced by another of rap's pioneering figures. Public Enemy MC will do the honors Thursday night when the Beastie Boys are honored for their achievements in music and video over the course of their 17-year career. Speaking with the MTV Radio Network during rehearsals for the VMAs, Chuck said that he was proud to able to mark the rise of rap, and the rise of the Beasties, at Thursday's awards show. "I think this is a benchmark for rap," Chuck told the MTV Radio Network during VMA rehearsals in Los Angeles on Wednesday. "It's an important point, and the Beastie Boys started of well and bred into that as well coming from the punk background that they came from. They're very influential on things that we've done as Public Enemy, and also of course being one major reason why I got signed
or quote-unquote discovered by Rick Rubin. You know, Mike D and MCA dragging my tapes along with DMC and Jam Master Jay to Rick Rubin and saying, 'It's these cats from Long Island that got something else.' Subsequently, you had L.L. Cool J, the Beastie Boys, and Public Enemy was the third signing by no accident. So it's an honor to actually be able to be considered to present them with this achievement award." [28.8 RealAudio] The accolades will no doubt continue to flow when Chuck steps to the podium Thursday night to present the Beastie Boys with the 1998 Video Vanguard Award. You can catch that moment when the VMAs are carried live at 8 p.m., with MTV News' pre-show coverage kicking off at 6:30 p.m.