The success that Run-D.M.C. enjoyed through its first three albums is impossible to overstate — before the trio from Hollis, Queens, stomped its shell-toe Adidas through the music industry, hip-hop was completely unproven as a commercial force. Just about every “first” in the genre’s history was accomplished by Run-D.M.C.: It was the first hip-hop act to earn Gold, Platinum and multi-Platinum album certifications, the first to have a music video play on MTV, the first to appear on the cover of Rolling Stone, the first to nab a Grammy nomination, the first to sign a major endorsement deal.

In a previous edition of liner notes for Tougher Than Leather, Public Enemy frontman Chuck D gave the album its props and shared memories of going on the road with the group after it dropped. He geeks out over the funk and rock samples for the title track as well as the way they cut up their older songs into “Soul To Rock And Roll,” and claimed “Run’s House” was “the written theme for all of hip-hop” in 1988.