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Youngstown Book Talk: Kimberly Mack's Living Colour Time's Up (June 9)


Lit Youngstown is proud to co-host author Kimberly Mack for a Youngstown reading and discussion on her book Living Colour Time's Up - an amazing book on a germinal album for the Black rock renaissance, Friday June 9 at Westside Bowl, 2617 Mahoning Ave.


Time’s Up was recorded in the aftermath of the spectacular critical and commercial success of Living Colour’s debut record, 1988’s Vivid, which featured the top-20 hit “Cult of Personality.” Time’s Up is a creative triumph, incorporating distinct forms and styles of music and featuring inspired collaborations with artists as varied as Little Richard, Queen Latifah, Maceo Parker, and Mick Jagger.


Mack's 33 1/3 on Living Colour, Time’s Up combines elements of oral history, biography, memoir, and cultural criticism, and features the full participation of members of Living Colour and other people associated with the album’s production. The result is a deeply researched look at Time’s Up’s importance and place in the rock canon.


"In the big picture, this is a book about the reclamation of rock music as Black music,” Mack says. “Time’s Up affirms and amplifies Black participation in, and vital contributions to, rock music.”


“It focuses on the timelessness (and timeliness) of the album in the 2020s given its critical engagement with racism, classism, police brutality, and our dire environmental crisis,” Mack says.

Kimberly Mack is Associate Professor of African American literature and culture at the University of Toledo. She is the author of Fictional Blues: Narrative Self-Invention from Bessie Smith to Jack White (University of Massachusetts Press, 2020), which won the 2021 College English Association of Ohio’s Nancy Dasher Award. Kimberly is also under contract with Bloomsbury Academic to write a new book, tentatively titled The Untold History of American Rock Criticism, about the BIPoC and White women writers who helped develop American rock criticism and journalism during the 1960s and 1970s. Her scholarly and publicfacing articles have appeared in publications such as African American Review, Popular Music and Society, Journal of Popular Music Studies, AMP: American Music Perspectives, Longreads, and No Depression. Kimberly holds a Ph.D. in English from UCLA.

-- Living Colour’s Time’s Up is the latest volume released in the 33 1/3 book series. The series, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2023, publishes books dedicated to a single album. Over the years, 33 1/3 books have been published on Blondie’s Parallel Lines (Kembrew McLeod), Jeff Buckley’s Grace (Daphne A. Brooks), and Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly (Sequoia Maner), and the series has expanded worldwide to include books focused on Japan, Brazil, Europe, and Oceania.

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