· By Anderson B. Cox

Rhythms of Routine: A Journey Through: Entry 1

In the heart of the 1980s, a young soul found solace in the melodies that filled the air on early Saturday mornings. The music would reverberate from the living room, heralding a day of cleaning and laundry, like clockwork. This auditory alarm signaled an impending chore-filled day, as my mother embarked on a mission to transform our Los Angeles apartment – affectionately referred to as "the hood" – into a haven of cleanliness. The air would become infused with the tunes of Smokey Robinson, complementing my mother's whirlwind of activity. She'd deftly prepare laundry baskets and pour bleach to sanitize every corner, from the floor and the tubs to the sinks.
The day was laid out before us, and it was our mission to tackle the impending chores, from lugging the ever-growing pile of dirty clothes to the local laundromat to reorganizing our cozy yet cramped apartment. Our off-key, enthusiastic singing would accompany us on this arduous journey as we scrubbed, sorted, and dusted. The promise of delicious hand-tossed pizza from the neighborhood parlor would serve as our reward, bestowed upon us as the sun dipped below the horizon, marking the end of a day's honest labor.
Little did I realize that the soulful soundtracks of those Saturday mornings were quietly etching their melodies into the very core of my being. These melodies, spun by legends like Smokey Robinson, would go on to shape not just my musical preferences but the tastes of countless others across the country. What none of us could have known back then was that these enchanting notes would be used as building blocks, sampled and transformed into an entirely new musical culture – Hip Hop.
In the early '80s, the Hip Hop movement was taking root on the East Coast, particularly in New York, but it hadn't yet crossed my path on the West Coast. My introduction to the wonders of modern technology came around 1983 or 1984. Little did I know that these early encounters with the budding world of technology would set the stage for my future. 
The powerful fusion of innovation and creativity during this period was the catalyst for a groundbreaking cultural movement. The future seemed ripe with the promise of groundbreaking music and technological advances that would forever change the way we consume and create art. However, back then, the term "Hip Hop" had not yet solidified as the preferred name for this burgeoning cultural force.
As the early '80s unfolded, new music and soundscapes emerged, fueling my growing fascination with this ever-evolving culture. These sonic influences, though unquantifiable at the time, gradually embedded themselves in my consciousness, subtly shaping my musical palate. 
I couldn't have foreseen that one Saturday night, as I belted out the lyrics of Midnight Star's "No Parking On The Dance Floor" in the company of my all-girl cousins, I was planting the seeds for my own future musical journey. Little did I know that these seemingly insignificant moments would grow into a lifelong passion and a defining element of my identity.
Around the same time, a revolutionary force was sweeping the airwaves: music video television. In 1981, the birth of music video channels heralded a new era of audiovisual exploration. Record companies recognized the immense potential of marrying music with visuals and embarked on a nationwide marketing campaign, giving rise to a new era of popular music. This was the dawn of a transformative period, a time when my introduction to music was intrinsically linked with the blossoming culture of the early '80s. However, it was a time without the internet, and popular songs were tangible, sold as physical copies in record stores that held an irreplaceable magic. 
These were the sounds of my youth, where the melodies of the past merged with the present, creating a unique soundtrack to my life. It's a journey I can't help but look back on with a sense of nostalgia and appreciation. explore the profound impact of music videos and how technology was shaping the cultural landscape in those early days. 
Much more lies ahead in this chronicle of the underground emcee's life – the journey is just beginning.
Mike Da Middleman