Catching up today on the mail and some jazz vinyl we missed, starting with Lee Morgan, Candy, Blue Note 1950. This was an original pressing listed in VG++ condition for the record and VG++ for the cover. It sold for $2,350.55. This seller had a bunch of other interesting items and also has a bricks and mortar store in Brooklyn called Northern Lights Records. Anybody been there? I’ll check it out when I return to New York from The Berkshires, sometime in September I would guess. If I was in a buying head, which I’m not, there were a couple of other items from this seller that were perhaps worth a gamble with marginal condition at a potentially reasonable price.One record I’ve sought for a long time is this one: Phil Woods, Woodlore, Prestige 7018. This was an original pressing listed in VG+ condition for the record and VG for the cover. It sold for $229.06. There was also
So I got up at 6:30 last Thursday morning and decided, on somewhat of a whim, to reorganize my records. By 6:45 I was hauling piles of records between one room and another, climbing ladders, aching my aging muscles, wrenching my aging back. For me, it was the usual: I go through this type of exercise at least once a year, maybe even more frequently. And often, there is no rhyme or reason to what I’m doing, just a desire to physically handle my records and pore through them to once again remind me of what I have and where it is located. Before I get into the details of what I did and why I did it, I am curious to ask: Is this just me, or is it a common affliction of the vinyl collector? Do any of you out there go through an organizing/reorganizing jag on a regular basis?
Anyway, so here’s my latest story.
Whilst I was away there was some email, as usual, so let me get to some of that as long as I am catching up. Clifford sent me a note under the subject “1568 Comedy Watch,” with the accompanying text: “I don’t know if people are getting bored with these, but I still find 1568 auctions fairly amusing/interesting.” Attached was this link to Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568. The auction as over and the final price was $960. Was it a copy you would actually put on your turntable? Not me. The record was listed in G+ condition. Was it a record you’d be proud to display on your shelves? Not really. The cover was in VG- condition with water damage and small seam split. Was it a record you’d spend $960 on, so you could say you own a copy of the rarest of the rare Blue Notes? Clearly, there was at least one buyer who would say amen to that. It was funny seeing this email from Clifford, because just a few minutes later I got a separate email from Mike with the same link and the following question: “I wondered if you or your readership would be willing to part with US$960 for BN1568 in this condition? Speaking for myself, Read More..
Finally back from a long break, and the first thing I’m going to do is take a look at what I left behind on my eBay watch list and catch up. This seller has several nice items for sale, including Sonny Rollins, Saxophone Colossus, Prestige 7079. This is an original New York yellow label pressing listed in VG++ or M- condition for the record and M- for the cover. You don’t run across too many in this shape. There are two days left on this auction, the bidding is in the $1,350 range and so far it has not reached the seller’s reserve price. This one comes from the same seller and also has not yet reached its reserve price: Johnny Griffin, A Blowing Session, Blue Note 1559. This is an original pressing with the New York 23 labels. The bidding is in the $650 range. Surely, the bidding will move into the four figures, but whether that meets the seller’s price won’t be known until the auction actually closes.
Speaking of records not selling:
I am watching about 10 jazz records on eBay now and not a single one of them has even a single bid. Could it be that the dog days of August are a good time to be buying? Or are sellers ratcheting up their prices as they see more and more high-ticket sales? Or is it nothing at all and the bidding will come in, as it usually does, at the last minute? In any case, here are some of the items, starting with one we’ve never actually seen in person: Lovey Powell, Lovelady, Transition 1. This looks to be an original pressing with the original booklet. The record is listed in VG++ condition and the cover is M-. Not a record you see very often. This one has a start price of $247.50 and there are more than two days left on the auction. Do you expect it to sell? I do.
Catching up on my jazz vinyl watch list on eBay. Here are some of the items I missed, starting with Blue Mitchell, Blue’s Moods, Riverside 336. This was an original pressing with the blue labels, reels and microphone logo, etc. The record was listed in M- condition and the cover was VG+. The final price was $540. I know that this record has always been prized among collectors and has gone for pretty high prices, as seen here — higher than most of the Riverside catalogue, except for perhaps Waltz for Debby and maybe one or two others. What I’ve never understood is “WHY?” I know it’s a nice record, but what is it about this particular record that has driven up its value over the years?
This is a Blue Note that’s also seemed to rise in value compared to other records released around the same time:
You will now be treated to a treatise covering more than you ever wanted to know about Blue Note 45s. So from now on, if you do happen to run across any interesting Blue Note 45s, you can do a search at Jazz Collector for this article and the shared knowledge of the community will be available for as long as I pay the bills to keep the site up and running. Here’s how I came by this newfound knowledge, which I wasn’t seeking, but which I will now share for others who may also not be seeking it. It started, as these things often do, with an e-mail inquiry, as follows:
I’m back from a brief respite. Went to an old mining town in southwestern Colorado called Creede, where my son directed a wonderful production of Our Town. A theater in an old mining town? Indeed. The story is that when the mining business began declining, town leaders put out a call for help asking for ideas on how to keep the town alive and attract residents year-round. A group of theater students from the University of Kansas decided to open a theater there. That was 50 years ago and the theater is still alive and kicking. They had done a production of Our Town back in their first season and had Michael come and do a new production this year.
And now for some more jazz vinyl from our eBay watch list, starting with Art Farmer Quintet, Prestige 7017. This is an original yellow label pressing with the New York address. The record and cover are both listed in VG+ condition. The price is only at $88 with less than a day left on the auction. Someone may be in line for a bargain (and a great record). In the same vein, and from the same seller, there is Art Farmer and Gigi Gryce, When Farmer Met Gryce, Prestige 7085. This is also an original New York pressing, listed in Ex condition for the record and the cover. Based on the seller’s descriptions, it looks like Ex is a higher grade than VG+. This one is at a bit more than $200.
While we’re on Prestiges, there is:
Here are the results of a few other jazz vinyl auctions we’ve been watching on eBay, starting with Kenny Dorham, Afro-Cuban, Blue Note 5065. This was an original 10-inch pressing with the Lexington Avenue label. The record was listed in VG+ or VG++ condition (I’d vote for VG+, based on the description) and the cover was listed in VG condition with a big stain on the front that spread to the back. The stained cover would certainly negatively impact my interest in the record, but not for the winning bidder, who is spending $902 for this record.
This was another one that was in not-so-great condition but still wound up selling for a fairly hefty price:
Thanks to Lennib for spotting this one: Thelonious Monk Plays, Prestige 189. This was an original 10-inch pressing, listed among the very nice 10-inch records we mentioned the other day. This one was also very nice, probably in M- condition for both the record and the cover. Even in this condition, the price was quite a surprise, selling for $1,136.11. That has to be the highest price we’ve seen for a 10-inch Prestige and, frankly, there’s no explanation we can come up with, other than the likely reality that two people really, really wanted this record and the bid the bidding up. From what we can see, the other records in this batch sold for prices that you would typically expect, given the titles and condition, including:
I happened to notice some nice 10-inch jazz vinyl on eBay this morning, so let’s start today’s post with The Amazing Bud Powell Volume 2, Blue Note 5041. This is an original 10-inch pressing that looks to be in M- condition, although the seller is not a record person and didn’t actually attempt to grade it. It looks quite lovely in the pictures, and that is definitely one of my favorite Blue Note covers. The bidding is now in the range of $235 with more than two days left and I would expect this LP to sell for quite a bit more. The seller has several other nice 10-inch LPs for sale, including Horace Silver Quintet, Blue Note 5062. This is also an original pressing, and the description is similar to the Powell record, no actual grading, but an implication that this one is also in M- condition for the record and the cover. The current price is around $125.
While we’re on the subject of 10-inch Blue Notes, there is also:
Was watching another copy of John Coltrane, Blue Train, Blue Note 1577. This was also an original pressing with the New York 23 label on one side. There was a copy of this last week with a VG cover that sold for $1,666. This one was in better shape — VG+ for the cover and either VG+ or VG++ for the record, depending upon how much you trust the seller’s description. This one sold for $2,318. As opposed to my headline for the Ellington at Newport record mentioned earlier, this one is a classic and a collectible. And it’s value as a collectible seems to keep on rising.
The same seller had this one, which you don’t see too often: Warne Marsh, Jazz of Two Cities, Imperial 9027. This was an original pressing in VG++ condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $208.14. I’ve owned a reissue of this record for many years, but can’t remember ever putting it on the turntable. Maybe tonight.
Following up on the latest auction from the Jazz Record Center, starting with Duke Ellington at Newport, Columbia 934. This was an original mono six-eye pressing. The record itself was sealed — in those days Columbia had a sealable inner sleeve. So the record was unplayed and the cover was M-. The price was $227.50. This is quite an important record in the history of jazz, capturing the concert that helped to revitalize Ellington’s career, but I’ve never known it to be particularly collectible. I’ve had original pressings at record shows and haven’t been able to sell them, even for $20. I’m not sure how much the market has changed for this record, although in certain circumstances, such as this one, clearly it can now sell for collectible prices. There was a previous copy that once sold for about $127, but the seller was bobdjukic so I’ve always assumed that was an aberration.
Let’s catch up on some of the jazz vinyl auctions we’ve been watching on eBay, starting with Paul Chambers, Whims of Chambers, Blue Note 1534. This was an original Lexington Avenue Pressing that was listed in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It wound up selling for $1,136. It’s amazing how the prices for these original Blue Notes have gone up in the years we’ve been doing Jazz Collector. A few months ago we saw a copy of this record sell for more than $2,700. Back in 2004, I gave myself a hard time for spending $300 on a M- copy of the same record.
This one did not sell because it did not meet the seller’s reserve price: Red Rodney, Signal 1206. This was an original pressing in M- condition for the record and VG++ for the cover. The top bid was $1,501. It’s hard to imagine that any of us, collectors or sellers, would have ever thought that $1,500 was too low a price for a single jazz record, but that day has certainly arrived.
This one made it into the $1,000 bin and actually did sell, despite the condition:
I’m watching a few items from the current Jazz Record Center auction on eBay, including: The Dave Bailey Sextet, Bash!, Jazzline 33-10. This is an original pressing Kenny Dorham, Curtis Fuller, Tommy Flanagan and others. The record is listed in M- condition and the cover looks to be about VG+, based on the description. The bidding is at $200 with nearly three days left before the auction closes.
Oliver Nelson, The Blues and the Abstract Truth, Impulse 5. This is an original mono promo copy with the white label. The record is listed in M- condition and the cover looks to be about VG++. The bidding is at $100.
This is one that is completely new to me:
Looks like we’ll be updating the $1,000 bin this morning, starting with John Coltrane, Blue Train, Blue Note 1577. This was an original pressing with the New York 23 on one side. The record was listed in VG++ condition and the cover was just VG. No matter, it seems, because these New York 23 Blue Trains are quite hard to find. This one sold for $1,666.
No surprise seeing Blue Train in the $1,000 bin. This one, which I mentioned yesterday, was a surprise, not that it sold for more than $1,000, but that it sold for more than $1,500: Hank Mobley Quartet, Blue Note 5066. This was only in VG+ condition for the record and the cover, and when we looked at it yesterday the price was around $460. The final price was $1,525.
Here’s one that may have a chance at making the $1,000 bin:
Off the soapbox and onto eBay. Let’s start with this: Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568. This is an original original pressing with the New York 23 on one side. The record is described as VG+ to M- and the cover is described as G to VG, although I think the seller may be very conservative on his grading. A few weeks ago, we saw one of these without the New York 23 sell for $11,191.63 (which reminds me, I have to follow up and see if the sale actually went through). The seller of this copy must have seen that and is offering this on a “buy-it-now” basis for the bargain price of $14,999. What do you think? Ready to plunk down 15 grand on a single record?
Here’s another Mobley being offered by one of our regular readers/commenters: Hank Mobley Quartet, Blue Note 5066. This is an original 10-inch record. The record and cover are both listed in VG+ condition and, as an added bonus, the record comes with the brochure “The Blue Note Story,” which I’ve written about in the past. This one closes later today and the bidding is in the $460 range, yet is has not yet reached the seller’s reserve price.
Here are a couple of interesting ones from the U.K.:
My son, Michael Perlman, has written and directed a new play called “At the Table,” which is being produced at the HERE Arts Center in New York. I’m stating that up front because when people do searches for the play on the Internet I want them to find this article. But, before I get to “At the Table” by Michael Perlman, let me get to the point as it relates to my friends and readers here at Jazz Collector.
My very first paying job as a journalist was while I was still in college. I was the jazz writer and critic for The Syracuse New Times in Syracuse, New York. It was 1973. I was 20 years old. The job was a blast. I got to interview Charles Mingus, Chick Corea and Larry Coryell when they came through town. I got to write a fun essay on Charlie Parker. I wrote an article on 25 records to get started on jazz. And, whenever the record labels would send over new jazz records, they would come to me. For a vinyl addict, what could be better?
At some point I was sitting in my dorm room and I was doing a review of a new Dexter Gordon album. It was Ca’Purange (Prestige 10051 for those of us who like to keep track of such things). I didn’t think the album was all that great, particularly in comparison to Dexter’s previous Prestige albums, most notably The Panther!, which was one of my favorites. I’m at my typewriter and writing about Dexter being a disappointment on this record, and commenting negatively on the other musicians, who happened to be Thad Jones, Hank Jones, Stanley Clarke and Louis Hayes.
And I look down at the paper, and the realization hits me: Who the hell am I to be criticizing Dexter Gordon or any of these amazing artists?
Since I’ve been offline for a bit, let’s catch up on some of the items we were watching when we left, and then we’ll move on to some new items in the next post. Lots of Blue Notes today, starting with J.R. Montrose, Blue Note 1536. This was an original Lexington Avenue pressing that was listed in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for just $667. I say “just” because we’ve seen this record sell for quite a bit more, in even worse condition than this one. I imagine the buyer is quite happy with this purchase.
Lee Morgan, City Lights, Blue Note 1575. This was an original West 63rd Street pressing that was listed inn M- condition for both the record and the cover. This one sold for $775 and that’s another “just” because this record has surpassed the $1,000 mark several times in the Jazz Collector Price Guide. Are we seeing a temporary dip in the market as we head into the summer? I don’t follow exchange rates closely — is that an issue that would drive prices down?
Perusing eBay this morning and came upon this very interesting, and very expensive, item: Miles Davis, Kind of Blue, Columbia 1355. This is described as a limited edition pressing of Kind of Blue, with the back blank. The seller says this was issued for record executives and promoters, which seems possible, although I’ve never seen one before, and I’ve been looking for 45 years. The thing with this one is that the back isn’t exactly blank — it’s been signed by Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Paul Chambers, with a “Best Wishes” thrown in by Trane. It looks pretty authentic, although I’m not an expert on autographs. It is listed in VG++ condition for the record and the cover looks pretty nice, although not actually graded. The seller says it came from her husband’s collection and original priced it at $25,000. It is now up for auction with a start price of about $5,000 and a buy-it-now price of $12,500. Who among us wouldn’t want to own this one? But at what price?
I thought I’d have more to say about the death or Ornette Coleman, but I really don’t. I am not an expert on his music and was never really a fan, although I typically liked what I heard, at least from his early years. So I’m going to go back to what I normally do here, which is watch records on eBay, starting with a pair of French records from a French seller: Barney Wilen, Tilt, Swing 30.058. This is an original pressing from 1957. It is listed in VG+ condition for the record and M- for the cover. The price is in the $400 range with less than two days left, but it has not yet reached the seller’s reserve price. Nice cover, but don’t know the record. Readers? Another one that is quite rare, but unfamiliar to my ears:
Just found this out thanks to one of our readers: Ornette Coleman, Jazz Innovator, Dies at 85. Will have more later. In the meantime, feel free to comment.
Let’s catch up on some more jazz vinyl we’ve been watching on eBay, starting with The Tal Farlow Album, Norgran 1047. This was an original 12-inch pressing with the very nice David Stone Martin cover. The record and cover both looked to be in close to M- condition and the start price was about $180. I didn’t expect the record to sell and it didn’t. One reason I posted it here is because I love the cover. Also, I do believe some of these great original Norgrans should get more attention, although, to be fair, the 10-inch version of this is the original release as well as the better-sounding version. The 12-inch has four additional tracks from a different date. This is one of the great jazz guitar records, so if you don’t have it, put it on the list.
Catching up on some more jazz vinyl sales we missed recently, including Tommy Flanagan Overseas, Prestige 7134. This was an original New York yellow label pressing, that was in probably VG++ or M- condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for $1,980.55. The same seller had a bunch of other nice records, such as Kenny Dorham, Quiet Kenny, New Jazz 8225. This was an original pressing with the purple label and deep grooves. The record was probably VG+ or VG++ and the cover was M-. The price was $1,136. One more while we’re at it: