Beastie Boys rapper Adam Yauch is delighted at his band's successful recent pro-Tibet concert in Taiwan - because it means the country supports his own political views.

The hip-hop three-piece undertake regular gigs to support Tibet's quest to achieve independence from China, which maintains also it controls the "renegade" province of Taiwan, even though the Far-Eastern country maintains its own democratic government.

And, despite a reluctance from Taiwan's music industry to anger Chinese interests, Yauch believes his band attracting 7,000 people to their concert - which is a high attendance in the country - indicates the Taiwanese people sympathise with Tibet's cause.

He says, "From what I've seen it seems that Taiwanese people are very supportive of Tibet, and more understanding of it than most."

However, Yauch would have no objection to playing concerts in China - which has only seen a handful of Western musicians performing there.

He explains, "We'd love to go to China. And at some point in the future hopefully we'll be able to do that if the government opens up a little bit more.

"But I don't think it would be wise for us to hold back on speaking out about oppression just so we could go there and entertain."

24/04/2003 20:56