At some point soon I will be updating the Jazz Collector Price Guide. My inclination is to not include some of the recent sales we’ve been watching here, such as Getz/Gilberto and Miles Davis Four and More since they are clearly aberrations and not indicative of the overall market. I think they would tend to give people false expectations as to real market value. What do you think?
In the meanwhile, here are some other jazz vinyl auctions we are watching on eBay.
Hank Mobley, Mobley’s Message, Prestige 7061. This is an original yellow-label pressing with the New York address. The record and cover are both listed in M- condition. The price is $165.50 and there are more than two days left in the auction. Tempting, although I have a feeling the bidding will definitely surpass the $600-$700 range and perhaps slide into the $1,000 bin. All of which would put it out of reach for me.
Louis Smith, Smithville, Blue Note 1594. This is also an original pressing. The cover
Cannonball Adderley Quintet in Chicago, Mercury 60134. This was an original stereo pressing in M- condition for the record and the cover. It sold for $410. I’m not going to comment on the prices of the records I’m listing here. They tend to speak for themselves, no?
John Coltrane, Giant Steps, Atlantic 1311. This was not an original pressing. It was a fairly common mono pressing with the red and purple labels and the white fan logo. The record was in M- condition and the cover was VG++. It sold for $142.50.
Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto, Getz/Gilberto, Verve 8545. This was an original stereo pressing. The record and cover were probably in M- condition. The price was $361.
John Coltrane, Ballads, Impulse 32. This was an original orange label pressing. The record was in M- condition and the cover was VG++. The price was $410. Our previous high price for this in the Jazz Collector Price Guide was $205.
Joe Henderson, Mode For Joe, Blue Note 4227. This was a Liberty pressing. Liberty Pressing. It was in M- condition for the record and VG++ for the cover. It sold for $154.02.
To keep the discussion on this a little longer. I was perusing eBay last night and there was another copy of Getz/Gilberto, Verve 8545, also a stereo pressing, also in M- condition. It sold for $37, which is higher than normal. The other one from bobdjukic is at $219 and closing later today. While perusing, I also came upon this nice record: Stan Levey, Grand Stan, Bethelehem 71. It was sitting there at $25 and there were no bidders and I was contemplating placing a bid even though I already own a copy in M- condition. I think the seller missed an opportunity here: This is one of those records where if you know it, and you know the identities of the musicians, it becomes much more interesting. Among the musicians on this record are Sonny Clark and Richie Kamuca and it is, as you’d expect, a terrific record. It’s also not so easy to find, certainly tougher to find than Getz/Gilbert0. This one was in VG+ condition and sold for $27. The highest price we’ve ever seen for this record in the Jazz Collector Price Guide is $90.
Many of you in the Jazz Collector audience complain about the seller bobjdukic, but you have to give the guy credit – whatever he does, he is able to get prices that no one else can dream of. I’m watching several of his auctions now and am pretty amazed at where the bidding is going. He must have regular customers who trust him and are well satisfied with what he delivers. Here are a few cases in point: Stan Getz, Getz. Gilberto, Verve 8545. Was there a more popular, more widely produced jazz album in the 1960s? Could you waltz into any record store now (if you can find one) and find a copy of this record in reasonable condition? This one has 11 bids and is currently priced at $219 with more than a day to go. Miles Davis, “Four and More,” Columbia 2453. Again, this is a great record, but not all that uncommon. This one has been bid up to more than $100. Cannonball Adderley Quintet in Chicago, Mercury 60134. This is a stereo pressing. Again a great record, but not that hard to find, even in nice condition. This one has been bid up to $178.50.
It was interesting watching the recent auctions of autographed vinyl and ephemera from the Jazz Record Center. With autographed items there’s always going to be a question of authenticity but there’s no reason to believe these items weren’t genuine. There are autographs and then there are autographs — I remember a couple of years ago there was an auction of a letter from Bill Evans to John Coltrane that sold for $38,000. There was nothing in this grouping that came close to matching that in either uniqueness or value, but there was some nice prices nonetheless, including:
John Coltrane and Milt Jackson, Bags and Trane, Atlantic 1368. This one, which me mentioned the other day, was signed by Coltrane, Jackson and Hank Jones. It sold for $758. Others: Miles Davis, Early Miles, Prestige 7168. This record is an early reissue, with a yellow label. This also has autographs By Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins. It sold for $377. 89. This is not a record we track often in the Jazz Collector Price Guide because it is not an original but, suffice to say, it would not normally sell for that amount sans autographs. One more: Duke Ellington, Such Sweet Thunder, Columbia 1033. This was an original pressing signed by Ellington. It sold for $191.38. Under normal circumstances, no autograph, this is really like a $10 or $20 record.
Mar 24, 2012 News
Just received a note announcing the Annual Jazz Record Collector’s Bash in New Jersey. It will be June 29 and 30 in Iselin, NJ, wherever that is. I’m hoping to attend this year, but it’s my normal time to be in The Berkshires so that may not be possible. This is the 38th annual event and I haven’t been in probably at least a dozen years, although I do have good memories of attending in the past, particularly the one year I was able to score some original Prestige and Swingville records for $5 each. Plus a nice Sonny Criss 10-inch on Clef. Its’ funny how we remember where we scored our records, down to the details of which record, where, when and how much. It’s part of what makes collecting fun, right? Here’s the link for the Jazz Record Collector’s Bash in case you’d like to attend.
How much would you like a John Coltrane autograph? I know I would. This is from the Jazz Record Center: John Coltrane, Bags and Trane, Atlantic 1368. This is listed as an original mono pressing with the red and purple labels — although, for the live of me, I still can’t get the original Atlantics straight once they are past the black labels — but the key to this record is that it is signed by Coltrane, Milt Jackson and Hank Jones. The record and cover appear to be in about VG++ condition. The price is around $750 with more than two days to go. From the same auction is a Jazz at the Philharmonic program from 1956 with a bunch of cool autographs, including Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz, Connie Kay, Milt Jackson, Roy Eldridge and Flip Phillips. There’s one bidder for this one, so far, and the price is $100.
Tags: Atlantic Records, Dizzy Gillespie Autograph, Hank Jones, Hank Jones Autograph, Jazz At the Philharmonic, Jazz Record Center, John Coltrane, John Coltrane Autograph, Jutta Hipp, Milt Jackson, Milt Jackson Autograph, Roy Eldridge Autograph, Stan Getz Autograph
Mar 21, 2012 Features
I recently picked up a batch of European — and South African — pressings of original jazz records from the ’50s and ’60s. Being American and a New Yorker at that, I’ve always had access to the U.S. pressings and, frankly, never had interest in the European pressings. I’m now listening to a Brubeck Columbia, CBS actually, with the heavy vinyl, red label, deep grooves. It has the soft cover and, now that I look at the cover, is actually from South Africa. There’s a note at the bottom: “Everyday is somebody’s biirthday. Give a national record gift token exchangeable anywhere in Southern Africa.” I just took off the Brubeck and am now listening to Ella Sings the Duke Ellington Songbook. All of this is leading to a point and some questions. For those who follow these things closely, is there a noticeable difference in sound quality between the American and European pressings?In listening to the Ella record now, the pressing, quite frankly, sucks. Really bad. The Brubeck was much better. How do you feel about the soft covers? And for those of you who were actually buying records in the era — Rudolf? Michel? — were you content to have the European pressings, or did you focus on the U.S. pressings? Just curious. Not sure what I’m going to do with these European pressings I now own. There’s something nice about having them, knowing they were issued at the same time as the U.S. versions, but I do have U.S. pressings of most of these. Oh,the challenges of being an obsessive collector. I hate to get rid of anything, even if I have it.
The Fabulous Fats Navarro, Volume 2, Blue Note 1532. This is an original Lexington Avenue pressing with the Lexington Avenue cover. The record was listed in M- condition and the cover was VG+. The price was $390. From the same seller, in the same vein: The Fabulous Fats Navarro, Volume 1, Blue Note 1531. This too was an original pressing with the original cover. It was in M- condition for the vinyl and VG++ for the cover. It also sold for $390. I was watching these records because I recently acquired copies of each of these that are duplicates for me. They are both in VG++ condition for the vinyl and the cover, and they both have the Lexington Avenue addresses on the label, deep grooves, etc. They have the West 61st Street addresses on the cover, so they are a drop less than original originals. I will probably wind up selling these on eBay, unless someone here wants to make me an offer I can’t refuse.
This one received a bid of nearly $2,000, but failed to meet the seller’s reserve price:
When you’re selling on eBay a picture is worth not just a thousand word but potentially a thousand bucks or so. The seller of this record was able to get a great picture of the cover: Hank Mobley, Soul Station, Blue Note 4031. It has to help generate interest, right? I mean, you look at the picture and you can picture the record in your collection. This was in M- condition for both the record and the cover and it sold for $1,802.01. That’s the highest we’ve ever recorded for this LP in the Jazz Collector Price Guide, although the record has gone over the $1,000 mark several times.
This seller had the three 10-inch Gil Melle records on Blue Note, including: Gil Melle, 5 Impressions of Color, Blue Note 5063. This one was in VG++ condition for the vinyl and M- for the cover. It sold for $179.05. As for the other two: New Faces, New Sounds, Blue Note 5020 was in VG++ condition for the record and the cover and did not attract a single bidder at a start price of about $150; Volume 2, Blue Note 5033, had a single bidder and sold for $149.99.
Bud Powell, The Scene Changes, Blue Note 4009. This is an original pressing that is listed in M- condition for the record and VG++ for the cover. I was wondering about the kid in the picture on the cover and went to pull out my copy to see if there was mention in the liner notes but, alas, I do not have an original copy of The Scene Changes, much to my chagrin. This one is already at more than $300 with more than a day to go, so this will not be the copy that fills the hole in my collection.
Jackie McLean, The New Tradition, Ad Lib 6601. This is an original pressing in VG+ condition for the vinyl and VG for the cover. It has many days to go, is more than $500 at this point, and has not yet met the seller’s reserve price. Jackie McLean, Jackie’s Pal, Prestige 7068. This one is closing today. The record looks to be in VG++ condition, while the cover is VG.The price is about $230. Hmmmm. Not bad. I kind of like that the cover is not perfect. This would fill a gap. I had both of these Jackie records at one time, but sold them.
The Arrival of Kenny Dorham, Jaro 5007. This was an original pressing that was listed in VG++ condition for both the record and the cover. It was a bit of a strange auction — there were only two bids and the winning bid was an even $800. Anyway. There was a lot more interest in this one, with more than 20 bids: Kenny Dorham, Quiet Kenny, New Jazz 8225. This was an original deep groove pressing in VG+ condition, which I’d say was questionable based on the description. It sold for $740.
This one nearly made the $3,000 bin: Donald Byrd, Byrd Blows on Beacon Hill, Transition 17. This was an original pressing with the booklet. The record looked to be in M- condition, minus the labels, of course, and the cover looked to be about VG++. The price was $2,926.54, which is still staggering to me.
And what would a day in Jazz Collector world be without a few Blue Notes to admire:
Here are a few more results of jazz vinyl auctions by the Jazz Record Center last week. Just in case anyone is interested, I have no vested interest in these auctions or special relationship with the Jazz Record Center. I like to watch their auctions as a bellwether because they are probably the most reputable seller in the market.
Working With the Miles Davis Quintet, Prestige 7166. This was an original yellow label pressing with the New Jersey address. It was a review copy in mint condition. The price was $472.35. There was a time when you could get the Miles Prestige records relatively inexpensively, but not anymore.
Here’s another nice one from Prestige: Stan Getz and Zoot Sims, The Brothers, Prestige 7022. This was an original New York yellow label pressing in M- condition for the record and probably VG++ for the cover. This one has the frame cover. The price was $234.72. How often are you going to find a record like this in this kind of condition? Nice.
Here’s a Blue Note that, surprisingly, did not break into the $1,000 bin.
Mar 6, 2012 Guest Columns
We haven’t had a guest column in a while, but here’s a good one from a reader who asks that we refer to him simply as Scott. Enjoy.
It started with a broken turntable. The new turntable my wife bought me at the HiFi shop some three years ago sat unused, not properly set up, broken. I know, I know. Just too busy. High stress military career, moving, a combat tour in Iraq, and two teenage boys got in the way of my budding interest in vinyl. The day finally came and the turntable was fixed. Off I went to the estate sales as usual. Not to find vinyl, but to search for tube HiFi gear or vintage speakers.
This particular sale — just last week — was in a 1930s Tudor of perhaps 3,500 square feet. The owners had obviously lived there since the ‘50s. A sweep of the house revealed no tube equipment, no speakers, and nothing much else of interest. I did note several stacks of records against the wall of one of the bedrooms upstairs. I now had a turntable so I went to look. I sat on the floor next to another fellow and asked him what was good. He talked about the Riverside label and we chatted. He picked out several and cut his stack to ten records, paid, and left. The stacks were almost all ‘50s jazz with hip covers. I selected ten, paid the lady the two bucks a record, and went home and played one.
The first record I put on was Helen Merrill (yeah that one). I loved it. I put on another. This one a Blue Note. Wow. Cool. Remember, I didn’t know a Blue Note from a blue bird, but I do know what I like. I went back and bought another 18 just because I liked them including 11 first-issue deep-groove, Blue Notes including BNs 1509, 1518, 1537, 1578, 1537, 1540, 1513, 1545, 1560, 1544, 1560, 1562. Remember, I have no idea what these LPs are selling for.
Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »
After all these years of collecting and visiting record stores, I still get a kick out of seeing records I’ve never seen before. Case in point: Zoot Sims All Stars, Barclay 84019. This looks to be an original 10-inch French pressing with a really nice looking cover and label. The seller describes the vinyl as being in M- condition, and the cover is probably VG++. The start price is about $200 and there are five days to go.
Speaking of European pressings, I had never seen this cover of Miles Davis, Porgy and Bess, CBS 62108. Think about how many candid shots of Miles you’ve seen where he’s actually smiling. Here’s one. Very nice cover. This is a stereo pressing listed in VG++ condition for the record and cover. So far there are no takers at a mere $19.
From the time I saved the record to when I started writing this post, a gap of about 15 minutes, the price of this record shot up by several hundred dollars: Jutta Hipp at the Hickory House Volume 1, Blue Note 1515. This is an original Lexington Avenue pressing. The record is in VG condition and the cover is VG++. The price is now more than $600 and will probably keep on rising.
Thelonious Monk, Brilliant Corners, Riverside 226. This was an original pressing with the white labels. It was listed in VG+ condition for the vinyl and VG++ for the cover and I recall the seller as being very reputable from previous dealings, as buyer and seller. As I was packing my records to move, I noticed that my copy of Brilliant Corners was a blue-label pressing and it was in maybe VG+ condition. I put this one on my watch list to potentially bid on it, not just as potential fodder for Jazz Collector. I think I would have gone to at least $180 for an original pressing. This one sold for $100, so I missed out.
I also had my eye on this for my own collection, but I knew the price would go way beyond my comfort zone — and it did: Lee Morgan Sextet, Blue Note 1541. This was an original Lexington Avenue pressing and the vinyl was in M- condition. The cover was VG+. It sold for $1,475. One of these days I’ll find a reasonable copy for the right price. Right?
Sorry I haven’t posted all week. I have moved, once again, this time in the city and I’ve been quite busy, as you can imagine, packing and unpacking records. We have moved from one small place into another small place and decided to keep just one record cabinet with room for about 1,500 records. You can see it in the picture, and perhaps make out a record or two — I see Jackie McLean, Lights Out and also the Cecil Payne on Signal. Anyway, I had to go through the process of weeding out and deciding which records to keep in the apartment, and which to move to other locales. I decided to keep the collection in the city focused primarily on original pressings from the 1955 to 1970 era, and to weed out some of the vocals to make this portion of the collection more bop/hard-bop specific. I also had to remove some of the traditional artists, such as Louis Armstrong and Count Basie, in order to have enough room for the records I wanted to keep here. I also nixed the idea of organizing the records by label and continue to have them alphabetically by artist. This way I’m less compelled to keep around records and artists in which I have less interest, either musically or as collectibles. Anyway, I don’t want to get into all of that, just wanted to explain why I’ve been absent from my post and my posting at Jazz Collector. But I’m back now, ready to once again explore, unearth and expound upon the hidden and not-so-hidden treasures of the Jazz Collector world.
Tags: Jazz Vinyl