C Liegh McInnis

C Liegh McInnis

1999 Tour Roundtable Moderator

What Time Is It? Presentation Panel Presenter

We Wear the Mask

How Prince Used the Time to Widen His Artistic Range

and the Perceived Humanity of African Americans

The Time is a definitive example that we have of Prince exploring and grappling with who he is as an artist. On his early records, Prince deals with introverted subjects in which he muses to himself aloud. With The Time, Prince is externally musing about who he is by recreating himself as an entire band. Even though many believe, as retold in Dave Hill’s Prince: A Pop Life, that The Time may have been primarily founded to pay a musical debt to Morris Day, it is obvious that The Time is an alter-ego of Prince, created to hold Prince’s R&B audience while he explores other musical genres. Where Prince is introverted, abstract, and whimsical, singing about social revolution through sexuality and individuality while waiting on the Armageddon to deliver us all, The Time is extroverted, realistic, and straightforward, singing about being hip and cool and identifying with a particular race of people. Where Prince is indefinable in clothing and music styles, The Time is black. In a period when Prince is attempting to explore all of his possibilities of being a rock star, The Time allows him to stay in touch with his R&B roots, write songs about partying, chasing girls, being cool, and being in love without being trapped in the genre. Ultimately, Prince uses The Time to force America to face the misconceptions about the dimensionality of the black race.

C Liegh McInnis is a poet, short story writer, retired instructor of English at Jackson State University, the former publisher and editor of Black Magnolias Literary Journal, and the author of eight books, including four collections of poetry, one collection of short fiction (Scripts: Sketches and Tales of Urban Mississippi), one work of literary criticism (The Lyrics of Prince: A Literary Look at a Creative, Musical Poet, Philosopher, and Storyteller), and one co-authored work, Brother Hollis: The Sankofa of a Movement Man, which discusses the life of a legendary Mississippi Civil Rights icon. He is also a former First Runner-Up of the Amiri Baraka/Sonia Sanchez Poetry Award sponsored by North Carolina State A&T. He has presented papers at national conferences, such as College Language Association, the National Council of Black Studies, the Neo-Griot Conference, and the Black Arts Movement Festival, and his work has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including The Southern Quarterly, Konch Magazine, Bum Rush the Page: A Def Poetry Jam, Down to the Dark River: An Anthology of Poems on the Mississippi River, Black Hollywood Unchained: Essays about Hollywood’s Portrayal of African Americans, Black Panther: Paradigm Shift or Not? A Collection of Reviews and Essays on the Blockbuster Film, Asymptote, The Pierian, Black Gold: An Anthology of Black Poetry, Sable, New Delta Review, The Black World Today, In Motion Magazine, MultiCultural Review, A Deeper Shade, New Laurel Review, ChickenBones, Oxford American, Journal of Ethnic American Literature, B. K. Nation, Red Ochre Lit, and Brick Street Press Anthology. In January of 2009, C. Liegh, along with eight other poets, was invited by the NAACP to read poetry in Washington, DC, for their Inaugural Poetry Reading celebrating the election of President Barack Obama. He has also been invited by colleges and libraries all over the country to read his poetry and fiction and to lecture on various topics, such as creative writing and various aspects of African American literature, music, and history.

McInnis can be contacted through:
Psychedelic Literature
203 Lynn Lane
Clinton, MS 39056
601 383 0024

A C Liegh McInnis Deep Dive