Next month the ambitious "Slapdance Across America" 50-state FOUND book tour van will be pulling into an alley in Times Square next to The Tank for 3 nights of find-filled reading and song.
FOUND Magazine is the brainchild of Davy Rothbart and Jason Bitner, who had the why-didn't-I-think-of-that? idea to collect and publish found letters, notes, drawings, photographs, laundry lists and other items collected by Rothbart, his friends, and strangers across the United States. The project began as a low-fi, cut-and-pasted assemblage of found items, first published in 2001. The inaugural issue proved popular and enjoyed a second printing, followed by issue #2 in 2003 and issue #3 this spring, by which time Rothbart had been receiving items from around the globe.
Then came the book deal. This May, Simon & Schuster published FOUND: The Best Lost, Tossed, and Forgotten Items From Around the World, and an exhaustive criss-cross-country tour ensued. Rothbart was asked to appear on The Late Show With David Letterman (Gothamist attended the taping, giddy that our longtime friend was a guest).
The second leg of the 8-month tour swings through New York City September 23-25, during which time Rothbart has been invited back to The Late Show to tell tales of the first leg of the tour and present the best items he's collected from fans along the way. There are five performances scheduled:
Thursday, 9/23 » 9:00 p.m.
Friday, 9/24 » 10:00 p.m. & 12:00 midnight
Saturday, 9/25 » 8:00 p.m. & 10:00 p.m.
Rothbart is touring the country with Poem Adept, otherwise known as his younger brother Peter, who performs songs inspired by select found items. Tickets to performances are only $5, and are available here.
Gothamist has attended a handful of Rothbart & Rothbart readings, and suggest that you do, too. They are comical, touching, insightful presentations of a curiously voyeuristic project.
The found note that started it all.