Years before Yo! MTV Raps or Rap City hit the air, Graffiti Rock aired on June 29, 1984, on WPIX channel 11 in New York City and on 88 syndicated markets across the U.S., making it the first hip-hop television show.
Graffiti Rock was created and hosted by Michael Holman, who was the manager of the popular breakdancing crew, the New York City Breakers. The show starred Run-D.M.C., Kool Moe Dee, DJ Jimmie Jazz, Shannon, Special K of the Treacherous Three, and The New York City Breakers.
Graffiti Rock was a hip-hop version of Soul Train. The show showcased the hip-hop elements including rappers(MCees), breakdancing, graffiti, and DJ’s. Graffiti Rock only received one 23-minute pilot episode.
A segment of Graffiti Rock was sampled on The Beastie Boys‘ album Ill Communication.