A Stroll Down Miles Davis Way (And More)

Miles copyI think my work workload is slowing down so, not making major promises, but I think I’ll be back to posting more regularly. At least I certainly hope so. In the meantime, it’s nice to see everyone commenting and keeping the action alive. I was able to swing over to eBay and add some items to my watch list. This is a great record, and one that has certainly gone up in value in the past few years: Miles Davis, Relaxin’, Prestige 7129. This is an original pressing in M- condition for the record and the cover. The seller was able to get some great pictures, which aways helps. The bidding is now in the $440 range and the auction closes later today. I had Miles on my mind because I was just taking a walk in my neighborhood and passed a street called “Miles Davis Way.” Yes, I live near Miles Davis Way. Nice, huh? 🙂 It is a single block — 77th Street between West End Avenue and Riverside Drive on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Miles had an apartment there at 312 West 77th Street. Apparently there was something of a battle to get the street named after Miles, who lived there for about 25 years and enjoyed hanging out on the stoop and chatting with neighbors. Miles? Man, I would have loved to have seen that. Next time I pass the sign, I’ll take a picture and post it here.

I see this wacky one is getting considerable attention on the previous post: Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568. If you look carefully at the pictures it is clearly a reissue. I will say, however, that the picture of Side One looks like it could possibly have a deep groove. I wonder if the seller would have actually done a little etching to make it appear that way. The picture of side two clearly shows no deep grooves and, of course, there is the cover. Nobody has successfully answered why this record has now been bid up to $760, but clearly the bidders, of  which there have been six, either need new glasses or they are mistaking the auction for one from our new friend and commenter bobdjukic.

This likes like a real Mobley: Hank Mobley Sextet, Blue Note 1560. This is an original pressing with the West 63rd Street address and real deep grooves. The start price is around $500 and so far there are no bids. I would suggest the lack of interest so far stems from a disconnect between the seller’s description and the pictures with the listing. The seller describes the record condition as Ex and the cover as VG++. But the cover is not VG++, at least not according to any grading schema I would use. What do you think? Even with the cover condition discrepancy, I expect this record to sell for more than $500. Heck, for that price, I may have considered a bid myself, if I didn’t have an absolutely clean copy from my Baltimore score.





  • Yeah, humidity spots and yellowing don’t merit a VG++ cover in my book. Though without splits, i guess I could say “meh, VG+.”

    Also, if it’s been subjected to that much humidity, even if the LP itself looks clean, it probably sounds cruddy.

  • also, re: 1568, though initially I thought “well, the bidders are insane/stupid,” the listing is not as up front on it being a reissue as I initially surmised.

  • I’d say the Mobley 1560 would be VG, but perhaps I’m too picky.

  • The description of the Mobley 1568 listing clearly stated the record as:

    “Reissue, USA, No “EAR”, No “RVG”, No “R””

    The picture of the back cover, albeit not in high-definition, also indicated the record as a 90’s Capitol reissue.

    I think the listing is quite clear and accurate with its description. I am not seeing any ambiguity.

  • I fell like 1560 always suffers from that age staining. At least most copies I see.

  • Why is the 1568 listing private on the bidders? Makes you suspicious as to why it is getting such high bids.

  • That copy of 1568 is a Classic Record reissue and they replicated the deep groove and labels. As to why it has gotten such high bid it’s really puzzling. The description clearly states its a reissue, perhaps the interests came from non english speaking bidders and seeing the pictures just assume its an original? I must say the seller did a good job of keeping the reissue description short and can be easily missed by but the most discerning bidders.

  • 20 bids at that price for a re-issue? Something is incredibly fishy.

  • Unreal…same thing happened with a Classic copy of JR Monterose 1536 a while ago that went for over a grand IIRC…I think Al blogged about it and that’s how I found out about it.

  • # 1560: the sleeve VG++ or E, I don’t see the difference. The traces of humidity aside, I would be happy to find a similar album with such nice vinyl Inside. Strange that there are no bids yet.

  • Gregory The Fish

    That 1560 cover doesn’t look so bad to me. VG+ at least. Any light-colored cover from that era is going to do that. There was more acid in paper and cardboard back then and it just murders the color over time. But the cover itself looks decent.

    As for 1568: money laundering. That’s my guess. And the poor own-up to it being a reissue is to make the price seem reasonable to outside watchers who aren’t jazz collectors.

  • Andy: The only explanation I can think of is that the people bidding on this are novice collectors who thinks this is an original. I also noticed that the copy is in VG+ condition on the vinyl, not even NM.

  • The reissue of 1568 have now reached US $1,625.00… this is nuts.

  • I think GTF had it right: something very fishy(no pun….alright…pun intended). I don’t even think novice bidders would do this!!

  • Geoffrey Wheeler

    Speaking of Miles’ West 77th Street address, a friend of mine had an apartment directly across the street. Sometimes in warm weather, we would sit on his tiny balcony and watch the scene. Word was Miles did not allow any playing by tenants because he wanted to remain on good terms with neighbors. A few times, I recognized musicians going into the building. I never thought there was anything special about this at this time in New York. After all, musicians have to live someplace.

  • Sports cards, coins, comic books, autographs, etc. can be graded by a grading service (PCGS, etc). Why not LPs, one grade for the cover, one for the vinyl, with comments like FP (first pressing), RI (reissue), etc.? Not perfect, but would add a more objective judgement. Of course, assigning a play grade is another matter. Oh well.

  • Terryfromflorida

    I ended up purchasing 4 albums from the seller of the Relaxin. The first two were a couple Bill Evans. Those 2 were so pristine when I received them that I bid confidentally on this Relaxin and also the Musings of Miles. I won them too. I wish I could have got some of the others from that collection but alas I still have keep money to eat…

  • Gregory The Fish

    Jeff, because unlike those things, records can’t be sealed in containers. They have to be PLAYED, man!

    although, i suppose such a service would be great for when you want to put them up for auction. get them sealed and graded and then the winner can unseal them. but that would tend to push them into display territory, i fear.

    Eric: all puns are welcome. the SCALE of them is usually appreciated. i have a WHALE of a time thinking of new ones, though. 🙂

  • Congrats Terry. They do look beautiful. Let us know how it turns out.

  • Hank Mobley 1568 was pulled from auction–curious

  • Just saw that, finally!

  • I had some correspondence with the seller, who said the bidding got out of hand because of a couple of aggressive bidders, one from Brazil, who he described as an ebay novice–not sure where the other bidder was from, but I’m guessing there was a language issue. He’s a very honest guy who didn’t want to see someone get hurt, so he decided the only way to stop it was to cancel the auction. He shared the message he sent the bidders:

    “This is a very nice record, and you are obviously very serious about getting it, but I fear that you and the other bidders are not fully aware it is a reissue and not an original, even though it is clearly described as a reissue. Therefore it is highly unlikely this record is worth such a high amount. I have no intentions of taking unfair advantage of you or anyone else so I think it is best if I cancel this auction.
    Best wishes!”

    I thought that was very well put, so, end of story…

  • I would say the seller did the right thing. Even just for his own sake, he may have had to deal with some drama down the road if a buyer in a foreign country (wrongly) felt like they’d been duped and went to take it up with the eBay authorities.

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