Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

    Description

    Bob Dylan 1962 Gerde's Folk City Handbill Designed, Owned and Signed by Freewheelin' Girl Suze Rotolo A very rare original paper flyer for a Bob Dylan engagement at Gerde's Folk City in spring 1962, designed by, owned by and signed on the back by Suze Rotolo, in whose apartment the item also suffered some fire damage back in the '60s.

    Of the three 1961-62 Gerde's Folk City handbills that Dylan appeared on, this is the third one and by far the toughest to find; it almost never turns up. In seriously collecting Bob Dylan for almost 50 years, this is only the second one I've ever seen. It's also the only Dylan Gerde's piece where Bob was the headliner, and to use any color as well.

    But it's the connection with the magical Freewheelin' girl, Suze ('SUE-zee') Rotolo ('ROTE-uh-lo'), that makes this piece so hyper special. Bob's girlfriend at the time, who would startle everyone in the village a year later by appearing on the cover of his upcoming second album arm-in-arm, Ms. Rotolo created the artwork for this handbill, with a cute little caricature of Dylan and also a guitar. She was also sure to point out that the prestigious New York Times (reviewer Robert Shelton, uncredited here) had labeled Dylan "bursting at the seams with talent." Her machine-printed credit appears in small print down in the lower left corner.

    Suze also hand-wrote her name at the bottom of the verso at some point. This was her personal copy, and it was damaged in a fire in her very apartment, but thankfully not destroyed. Ms. Rotolo retained possession of it for 44 years, and then sold it at auction back in 2006 (see details at the end of this listing).

    And yet there's still another magical element of this handbill that almost defies belief. And ties it in incredibly with the Freewheelin'. The opening night of this stand was Tuesday, April 24, 1962. An evening gig, like them all. Well, during the daytime on April 24, Mr. Dylan commenced the recordings for his Freewheelin' album, which would stretch out over the next year. And what did he record on this day? How about "Talkin' John Birch Society Blues" and "Ramblin' Gamblin' Willie." That's right, two of the deleted Freewheelin' tracks. (Be sure to see our Music Memorabilia auction today for all of the Freewheelin' variations we're auctioning, including one that plays these deleted tracks.)

    And on the next day, April 25, Bob recorded "Let Me Die in My Footsteps," another deleted track. So if you want to know exactly what Mr. D sounded like on the dates of this flyer, well, heavens, just listen to those tracks; they were recorded within hours. It all ties together in a simply stunning package.

    To make sure we don't diss anyone, the other talent on this flyer consists of "dynamic Israeli folksinger" Ron Eliran, "sensational 12-string guitarist" Mark Spoelstra and "international songstress" Varda Karni. Boy, Suze didn't want to diss anyone, either!

    Additional Provenance: This exact handbill was sold through Christie's Auction House in December 2006 by Ms. Rotolo herself. It sold for $10,200, and that owner then sold it privately to another collector for $11,000.

    Measures 8 1/2 x 11" and has to be given only a "Good" grade due to its historical damage. No question this piece has fire and smoke damage around the edges, but luckily not in the interior. "1962" written at the top, perhaps by Ms. Rotolo, because the ink matches her small signature on the back. Small piece now missing from that date. Tattered lower right margin with several tiny pieces missing, and small piece missing from the bottom margin off to the right as well. Horizontal crease across the center of the flyer. On the verso, "1961" mistakenly written in pencil by someone, and Suze's signature at the bottom with what appears to be a middle initial.

    --Pete Howard
    Consignment Director, Entertainment & Music

    COA from Heritage Auctions


    More Information:


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2019
    16th-17th Saturday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 12
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,471

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $300,000 (minimum $49), plus 20% of any amount between $300,000 and $3,000,000, plus 12.5% of any amount over $3,000,000 per lot.

    Sold on Nov 16, 2019 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item
    Coming soon:

    Luxury Real Estate
    Opens about 07/23/2021

    Comics & Comic Art
    Opens about 09/27/2021

    Luxury Real Estate
    Opens about 08/06/2021

    Jewelry & Timepieces
    Opens about 09/24/2021

    Photography
    Opens about 09/22/2021

    Decorative Art
    Opens about 09/23/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 09/28/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 09/28/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 09/29/2021

    Currency
    Opens about 10/04/2021

    Western & Texas Art
    Opens about 10/01/2021

    Sports Collectibles
    Opens about 10/01/2021

    US Coins
    Opens about 09/24/2021

    World & Ancient Coins
    Opens about 10/04/2021

    Decorative Art
    Opens about 10/07/2021

    Comics & Comic Art
    Opens about 09/30/2021

    Comics & Comic Art
    Opens about 10/11/2021

    Decorative Art
    Opens about 10/08/2021

    US Coins
    Opens about 10/01/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 10/13/2021

    Comics & Comic Art
    Opens about 10/07/2021

    US Coins
    Opens about 10/04/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 10/15/2021

    Entertainment
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    Jewelry & Timepieces
    Opens about 10/22/2021

    Entertainment
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    Manuscripts
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    Comics & Comic Art
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    Entertainment
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    Musical Instruments
    Opens about 10/12/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 10/19/2021

    Photography
    Opens about 10/20/2021

    US Coins
    Opens about 10/22/2021

    Decorative Art
    Opens about 10/21/2021

    Comics & Comic Art
    Opens about 10/14/2021

    US Coins
    Opens about 10/11/2021

    Space
    Opens about 10/25/2021

    World & Ancient Coins
    Opens about 10/17/2021

    Currency
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    Silver
    Opens about 10/26/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 10/26/2021

    Jewelry & Timepieces
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 10/27/2021

    Fine Art
    Opens about 10/27/2021

    US Coins
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    US Coins
    Opens about 10/18/2021

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    VIEW BENEFITS
    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
      winnings 
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2022 April 3 Guitars and Musical Instruments Signature® Auction .

    Learn about consigning with us

    I think Heritage deserves a lot of credit for covering all technical bases without a hitch.
    Roy M.,
    New York, NY
    View More Testimonials

    HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search