A Collection Worth Viewing

piano triosFor the past few weeks I have been having a blast looking at and listening to the records I acquired in that stellar collection from Baltimore (The Complete Jazz Collector Bruce M. West Collection). Last night I listened to two of the rarest, and greatest, jazz trio records ever recorded: Sonny Clark Trio, Blue Note 1579 and Tommy Flanagan Overseas, Prestige 7134. I have heard about these records for years, but never owned original copies. It give me great pleasure to put my own copies on the turntable and just listen to them. And they really are great. As I’ve been listening to the records I’ve been putting them onto the shelves in my collection. However, before putting too many of them onto the shelves, I did a video of some of the highlights from the collection for posterity and for insurance purposes. I hadn’t planned to show the video to anyone here at Jazz Collector, but why not? Part of the fun of having a collection is to be able to share it with friends. SoI will post the video here. It is clearly not professional and it ends with a closeup shot of my foot. But it is really cool flipping through the records and I decided to leave it as is, unedited, since it was never intended for public consumption. I’m sure there will be many comments. Please be discrete and respectful. Thanks. Here is is: Jazz Collector 12-Inch Collection From Baltimore.


  • Drooling over here!

  • Wasn’t sure if it was the envy or the camera work that got me nauseous. Congrats again.

  • Way Cool. Enjoyed the peek. And to think, I saw at least two of the titles (in the video) in a record store yesterday. I may have to go back and buy those!

  • Wonderful.

  • Very cool indeed. How’s that Carl Perkin’s? I’ve been trying to track one down. Thanks for sharing!

  • Thanks for sharing the video Al; as you were flicking through each title, I was simultaneously saying “Don’t have that, don’t have that, don’t have that, don’t have that” etc etc etc….you get my drift.
    I’m not envious…no, no not at all…..yeah right!

  • Watching that video reminds me of that film “Being John Malkovich”… It was almost like once we clicked on that link, we find that little hidden door that leading us through a secret portal into the minds eyes of “Al”, (and the rest of the Jazz Collective for that matter) who have all, at one time or another, daydreamed of flipping through the bins of the world’s most perfect record store alone first thing on a Saturday morning even before they turn on the store turntable for the day… It’s the kind of place that only exists in our wildest imaginations, and has every possible title you could ever want.

    Most of the time we are truly lucky to find even one choice cut in a sea of later pressings when we wander into a record store these days… To imagine a place that has every first pressing of every album you ever wanted is almost maddening in the sense of having to try and decide for once, what NOT to buy. One could almost liken the mere notion of such a reverie to Dante’s third circle of hell ! …Oscar Wilde said it best I believe: “There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it.” (Sorry, slow day at the office)

    Nevertheless… Man, that is one sweet sight ! Thanks for sharing a piece of that beautiful dream with us Al.

  • Whoa ! …Did anyone else find themselves ejected and dropped into a ditch near the New Jersey Turnpike after watching that one ?

    (Sorry, couldn’t resist the movie reference… Like I said earlier, slow day at the office !)

  • Thank you Al, that was wonderful. But what’s with the heavy breathing soundtrack?

  • Bill — wouldn’t you be breathing heavily if you had scored those records?

  • Damn Al, please tell us this is all a joke and those are the $10 Park Ave. reissues in that first bin! I only have about 25 of the original pressings in those two bins and I’m sure they aren’t in as nice condition, congratulations on the dream score!

  • It’s almost surreal. I showed it to a friend of mine who is just getting into jazz vinyl and was narrating: “holy grail . . . holy grail . . . holy grail . . . impossible . . . no one has that . . . never seen one in person . . . holy grail . . . that can’t be real.” And so on. Wowzers.

  • Thanks so much for taking the time to create and provide access to that video. Congrats again on an awesome score! Am I correct that the only Impulse label in the batch was the Coltrane? Have a great time with your listening… and please consider a pedicure before your next video installment! 🙂

  • These records are worthy of a documentary.

  • Astonished. Jealous. Incredible. And as Joe said, surreal.

  • Beautiful stuff Al–well done!

  • WoW.. when dreams come true ! But I´m not so bad at all. In September 2012 i also bought a collection of 376 BN´s incl. 40firsts of 1500 + 40firsts of 4000 + 40firsts 4100 / 4200 series + about 40 2nd/optinal pressings throughout. I already thought about posting a video but now i´ll start working on such a projekt. When i´m ready i hope to be allowed to announce it from here. Let´s get ready for the rumble… So long Horst

  • Very nice indeed. Videos of this kind of stuff are great. Mouthwatering. Please do more videos. Maybe when you take some of them out and film the labels and stuff. Like the Byrd On The Hill on Transition? Ahhh, I want that one..

  • Thanks for the video Al, This is just dreamy stuff! I have only 23 originals of those, but man…., wow! Congrats for this wonderful score! I am in Awe!
    I became dizzy and started breathing heavily just by watching the video, and this reminded me of the Japanese guy who was visiting the Leon Leavitt warehouse, and had to be transported with an Ambulance after he fainted watching similar treasures stacked in multiple copies!

  • ohhh…your feet are a bit funky looking!

    Man I am green with envy. What a lovely score.
    Very well done.
    Now listen to them!

  • dannnggg…

    so you have double original of sonny’s crib now?

    i’d be happy to get jim hall or the impressions but goodness, mixed in with all that? i’d die.


  • Gregory – well put. I had the same reaction to the Cannonball titles. For the average collector, those are very nice scores (I was pleased when I picked up my copies), but in that box, they were barely noticeable!

  • VERY funky,indeed..the collection,that is! I’ve got a few,but-oh,that Sonny Clark Trio..yes please!

  • “Part of the fun of having a collection is to be able to share it with friends.”

    Don’t know what you mean when you say “sharing,” but for me, I can’t wait to get my share!

  • Joe – I got an original Bill Dixon “Intents and Purposes” the other day and was thrilled. Then I come on here and see this. Makes me feel so small. Haha.

  • Greg, I agree: this is a heavyweight collection for sure.

  • nice interview with Jummy Heath on NPR this morning – he’s 87 & still going strong

  • …I checked out that Jimmy Heath interview you mentioned Earl. (Thanks for the tip on that one.)It’s amazing to think that there are still a few guys left on the scene who where actually there making it all happen, along with the records we prize today. It’s definitely worth it to catch these guys live on stage while we still can, as nothing can replace the energy of a live performance by a Jazz legend.

  • Al, looking at this wonderful “new” collection of yours, it begs the question. What type of deck and cartridge to you use to play these treasures on?

  • Vinyl porn

  • Thanks, exactly what wanted to see. This has been a great joy for all of us. Keep us informed as you listen to more of them.

  • Hi, o.k. i´ve put it on you tube..
    but it´s too long. Next weekend will follow another try. If you want look here:

  • Al, are they all NM? That would be fantastic for sure!

  • At first, I stopped watching after about a minute. I returned to the video an hour later and had to stop again. I just finished the last minute of it. No idea what it is -joy? envy? anger? jealousy?- but it’s just gold bar after gold bar after gold and really, it made me a wee bit uncomfy in the stomach. Congrats Al, but my word it was a torturous bit of video 🙂

  • Mattyman, as someone wise said:
    For collectors it can both be a problem when you cannot obtain the items you want – and also when you actually get them!

  • @Shaft: indeed a quote that puts the brain cells to work.

    It’s probably in the same vein as the quote that Don-Lucky provided a few comments up: Oscar Wilde said it best I believe: “There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it.” 😀

  • Yup Mattyman! That’s much better said 😉

  • agree with you guys … for me chasing the rabbit is at least as exiting as actually catch it!
    Maybe some of you exprerienced the feeling when you got the last record missing to complete a catalogue and you suddenly felt done and lost bit of empathy to your collection?

  • I have a new Kenny G lp,
    I may post a video of it soon.
    It sure makes for interesting viewing.

  • I confess that I was hoping to see the Herbie Mann lp Al mentioned in the original story of exploring the collection. Really Al, which Herbie Mann record kept such amazing company in that Blue Note heaven?

  • OMG…amazing collection…so jealous, wow!

  • Show of hands for all those who have watched this video more than once and are certified nerds as a result *raises hand*

  • Um…does this sound familiar to anyone?

    This sounds like the part of the collection that Al already bought, doesn’t it? Very weird…possibly some sort of scam?

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