Blakey, Mobley and a Pair of Monks

I’d like to follow up on some of the auctions we’ve been watching, starting with this one, which I still find kind of strange: Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, A Night in Tunisia, Vik 1115. This was an original pressing listed in Ex condition for the record and the cover. I’ve never really covered it before as a collectible, but now I will, at least based on the final price tag, which was $324.45. I had promised to listen to a copy, but I realized my body is in the city and my record is in the country. Given the era, the personnel and the repertoire I’m sure it’s a great record. And, of course, there is the only recording in history of the infamous Ferris Benda, aka Jackie McLean.

This one had 51 bids from 19 bidders, quite a lot of action: Hank Mobley Quintet, Blue Note 1550. This was an original West 63rd Street deed groove pressing, in VG or VG- condition for the record and VG- for the cover. It sold for $665.55. For that price, I hope it provides the buyer with a good listening experience. Often, those old Blue Notes can look VG and play like a charm.

Thelonious Monk, Genius of Modern Music Volume 2, Blue Note 1511. This was an original Lexington Avenue pressing with the frame cover. It looked to be in M- condition for the record and the cover. It sold for $501. Someday, I believe, these earlier Blue Notes of music originally issued on 78s, will all be in the $1,000 bin. This one too: Thelonious Monk, Genius of Modern Music Volume 1, Blue Note 1510. This as also an original Lexington Avenue pressing. The record was M- and the cover was VG+. The final price was $354.




  • I’ve had great luck with auctions from the seller of the Mobley 1550, but even assuming it plays and appears better than the grade, that’s a lot of coin for that LP in a later jacket (43 West 61st). Based on the later jacket, I’d guess that it is not the earliest flat edge pressing as well, but impossible to tell from the pictures or the listing.

  • Yeah, unless someone swapped covers at some point it was most definitely a raised rim record (I also think I see a faint shadow line along the label edge that would indicate such but maybe I’m just delirious). I thought I might be able to bag it for a relatively soft price due to the condition and later pressing but no dice. I get the feeling that with funkyousounds people bid assuming the records to be at least a full grade above listed which pretty much puts them out of my zone even for usually low to mid-priced stuff.

  • yeah, funkyousounds/funkyou! get premium prices for a lot of stuff. I made a valiant effort for that sealed Steve Reid (would like a flawless? copy) but was shot down. I think I’ve only won a single record from their auctions — not a jazz record, but a weirdo psych/homegrown LP — and though it was market rate the thing was mint as mint can be for an unsealed 1960s album.

  • Gregory the Fish

    i used to buy a lot of not-pricey stuff to fill holes in the impulse collection from the funkyousounds people back when they still offered free shipping. always a good experience.

    i recently had a lucky score with a record that isn’t of interest to me personally, and sold it for some spare change and was considering bidding on one of those monks, but i figured they’d double, and they did. so no big deal.

    about a year ago i forgot to bid on a vik copy of that messengers record, and it sold for about $25. i could just scream. have NEVER seen it go for less than $50 since.

  • That Messengers LP is a really good record though I’m surprised — maybe I shouldn’t be? — to see it top $300.

  • I tried to buy a bunch of Coltrane on the latest funkysounds auction but got sniped on almost everything.

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