The 2008 economic slowdown caused major issues across the U.S., but many of these problems have rarely been addressed by the mainstream press as poverty has struck across the world’s largest economy for a number of decades. Former CNN international correspondent Doug Levitt has been trying to bring attention to the problems facing the poorest in the U.S. since 2004 when he embarked on the first six week leg of what would become “The Greyhound Diaries”; Levitt had eventually traveled over 80,000 miles by 2012 and continues to travel by bus across the U.S. to add to his ongoing music, spoken word, and novel writing project.
“The Greyhound Diaries” have taken Levitt across the U.S. and took in the worst periods of the 2008 economic slowdown, which are detailed in the songs featured on Doug Levitt’s “The Greyhound Diaries” EP, in his novel, and throughout his live performances. Levitt continues to tour the U.S. adding to the material he has developed as an artist seeking to discuss the different ways poverty is affecting people across the U.S. The work of Doug Levitt is described as following in the footsteps of the great social artists, such as John Steinbeck, who sought to bring news of the realities of life for the poorest in the nation.
Levitt may not be the archetypal artist who would embark on a journey into the lowest classes of U.S. society after he was born into a political family in Washington D.C. Doug Levitt’s career seemed to be heading for high levels of success when he embarked on a journalism career with CNN, which he would later give up to follow the life of an artist; Levitt cites the discovery of his father’s body after committing suicide as a driving force behind his decision to change career path.