eBaying: Jazz Vinyl That Sold, Others That Didn’t

Let’s catch up on some more jazz vinyl auctions we are/were watching, starting with: Cliff Jordan, Blue Note 1565. This was an original pressing listed in M- condition for both the record and the cover. It looked like quite a beauty and, in fact, may still be available. This one received a top bid of $1,525, yet is failed to meet the seller’s reserve price. I know the market is the market and sellers have every right to hold out for top value, but I still find it hard to fathom wanting to pay more than $1,500 for a single record and still being unable to purchase it.

Here’s a fine looking Blue Note for you: J. R. Monterose, Blue Note 1536. This is an original Lexington Avenue pressing that looks to be in M- condition for both the record and the cover. The auction closes in three days and the bidding is in the $565 range. Can’t imagine this will sell for less than $1,000, so the question is how much more than $1,000 will it fetch.

This one isn’t regarded as a collectible anymore (clearly), but I kept an eye on it wondering if anyone would even want it at all:

Count Basie, Basie Jazz, Clef 633. This was an original pressing. The record looked to be in VG+ condition and the cover perhaps VG++. When I started collecting, anything on the Clef or Norgran label  had collectible cachet, and a record like this, with an awesome cover, would certainly have been in demand. This week on eBay, nobody would even pay six bucks for an original pressing. Something sad about that. I also had my eye on this record because, with just a few hours left in the auction, there weren’t any bids at all: The Artistry of Tal Farlow, Norgran 1014. This too was an original pressing from the same era as the Basie, it has a similar cover (also great), and it is a terrific album. This one was listed in VG+ condition for the record and probably VG for the cover with seam splits. Eventually there were three bids for this record and it sold for $49.50. At least someone wanted it.


  • Both the Cliff Jordan and J.R. Monterose look the business, but you’re right: they’re already effing expensive! 🙂

  • The J. R. Monterose, Blue Note 1536, is the Classic Records reissue as the seller clearly states “NO EAR. NO RVG OR 9M” and the back states “ALSO SAYS EMI – CAPITOL”. Why would someone bid this high for a reissue that can be bought for $30 is beyond me.

  • Aaron – those classic records are rare now. Check the Zeppelin classic series and the prices they command. I have one of the Montersoe and they are as close to an original as possible – dg/flat edge/killer sound – it’s scary. I sold my orig years ago so can’t compare the 2 (hence why I have the classic) but I have compared it to my UA mono and it’s every bit as good as that one and the UA mono is a very nice sounding record! Real close to some of my great sounding bn monos. Those are a bargain at $30-$40 bucks when they pop up every other month(hint guys!) . I betcha the Monterose fetches a good chunk of change as all that is left are the 45 rpm music matters and like labels it seems. That one is 33 1/3!

  • @Aaron, Classic Records are a real trap for many buyers … Most of them are unaware of those repressings which contain nearly all atributes of the original first pressing. I believe we had some posts here about this phenomenon (I believe on the example of Mobley’s “Soul station”) …

  • I 100% agree about the Classic Records Blue Notes and own around 10-15 myself but they don’t command prices anywhere near the Led Zeppelin titles. Acoustic Sounds has the Classic Records J.R. Montrose (and around 20 other titles) NEW for $25. The people bidding must not be reading the fine print, even though the seller doesn’t hide the details.

  • Here’s a current link to Classic Sounds Blue Note LP page..VERY interesting info as to what’s available and,most importantly,at what cost…

  • oops..make that “Records”.

  • That’s a crazy price for a reissue albeit an audiopile one. Somethng is wrong here! Buyers please wake up.

  • Indeed, guys, the Monterose is a reissue. I can’t believe myself for not reading the description closely enough. I looked at the label photos and that was that. A good kick in the ass and a wake up call to say the least 😉 my initial comment now only applies to the Cliff Jordan…

  • I guess maybe not that rare given the new posts here. I know the Zeppelin titles go for big bucks. Also some audiophile co. made a 2lp press of Miles’ KIND OF BLUE that fetches good coin! Wow – I want that TINA BROOKS – TRUE BLUE if it looks anywhere near what that Monterose looks like! Any one have that or know more about the other titles? My classic records AB 4001 Moanin’ looks like those (DG/Flat edge etc..)

  • Aaron – I looked on Acoustic sounds and they only have the 45 rpm versions (?)

  • Sorry, I am confused…
    are we to ascertain the J.R. Monterose is a reissue? A good reissue, but a bloody reissue?
    AL you state ORIGINAL in the write up….
    Why is this record attracting such high bids?
    EMI- Capital…Flat Edge..DG What is going on?

    Very Confused!

  • I have just checked out the link from ceedee
    The description is very tempting egh?

    In fact maybe the only way I could get a couple of the titles i dream of.
    I always thought we were blessed by the Jap reissues
    but it always bugged me the small details were not there, i.e. DG and thicker Vinyl.

    If these are true Mono, Thick vinyl, DG, proper hard cardboard sleeves….and they sound as good as they claim…I’m in!

    Can anyone confirm or review one of these please…

  • I was, alas, too hasty in my assessment of the Monterose. I didn’t realize the EMI-Capital reissues showed the Lexington Avenue address. My mistake. I’m sure the people who bid this record up to its current price are either equally careless or just plain ignorant.

  • They look amazingly good re-issues though!

  • I agree that the non-sale of the Basie is indeed sad (in fact I’ve written the seller and made an offer)

    It could be argued that the label is not an original, and that the yellow trumpeter was the original until about 670 or so

  • by the way… the Cliff jordan album: I Love It… not a revolutionary album, but …great. Listen to “not Guilty”,… , and keep your feet still….impossible!

  • Earl: agree on sadness, etc, but the market is what it is. However, the Clefs were always black with trumpeter labels, whereas Norgran was yellow.

  • While sad that the great Clef and Norgran records are not as appreciated as they once were – and, in my opinion, still should be – one of the great delights of my vinyl-buying is not-infrequently finding tremendous Clef records in shops for a pittance. To see a Blue Note DMM for $30, and then an original Clef Oscar Peterson or JATP or Granz Jam Session or Billie Holiday for $8 is a sheer delight.

  • Rudolf
    My label “guru” was the one who claimed that, & he is a huge collector – none of my early Clefs are yellow, but I thought he knew what he was claiming – Norgrans & early Verve/Clef are indeed yellow, but I suspect you may be right about Clefs not being anything but black.

  • i have stopped bidding on all the records listed by 8815serge. i have bought a couple lps from him and they have been great. awesome condition and clearly a great seller….. i just find it incredibly frustrating that so few auctions hit his reserve prices. i get excited only to get let down again and again. i have been high bidder numerous times only to fail to achieve the reserve. the reserves seem to require record (or near record) pricing… i bet my high price surpassed the reserve several times. i stopped bothering to email after the auctions to see if we could do deal. perhaps a buy it now price or high start price would be better (like jrc). i understand need to protect yourself but i now just skip his auctions as they seem like lucy holding the football for charlie brown…

  • @ BigBear.”i bet my high price surpassed the reserve several times.”

    I’m not that familiar with how eBay works behind the scenes, but its always been my understanding that once a reserve price has been met, the seller doesn’t have any way to keep the item from selling. Am I mistaken?

    Any idea of when 881Serge might have changed his auctions and started putting up higher reserve prices that haven’t been met? Also, have you ever seen him re-list any of the records that haven’t sold because the reserve hasn’t been met? He may be dropping his reserve price when he re-lists.

    That said, 881Serge may be one of those sellers who just doesn’t care how long it takes to sell, may be selling on multiple sites (Discogs comes to mind). I’ve never bid on a record, but have many times studied current and sold auctions to get a sense of the value of an album I own, so I’ve learned certain sellers work that way. For instance, Sugarecords and Sedona Antiques are two that will put records up at 100% goldmine mint price and let them sit there for years. And that’s NOT an exaggeration!

  • That Monterose Classic Records auction is insane. Just have to state my point… people are nuts! Clearly they’re not reading the fine print because the fact that it is a reissue is buried in the description. Also the seller is obviously counting on people skimming the description because it’s still going up, up, up!

  • $1,081!….hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha
    for a reissue
    I thought we were in an economic nightmare at the moment, obviously some people really do have more corn than sense. It will undoubtedly be returned by the buyer…Right?

  • Ahhh,but is the seller under any obligation to ACCEPT such a return?
    1)There was no clear effort to deceive
    2)full info given in description
    Does ‘returns accepted’ mean ALL returns? (Just playing devil’s advocate here…)

  • I know the seller is a grand richer…but how does he sleep at night?

    Prob very soundly in nice new expensive sheets!!

  • Do we know what reissue it is? I thought both the Capitol-EMI and Connoiseur re-issues had the “Finest in Jazz” labels.

  • Aaron,if the buyer is lucky he’ll never see your post. In the other hand,had he been a regular here,he’d be $1,000 richer right now!Oh,oh-yet another valid case if Al ever goes the dues-paying route(lol).

  • @Jim Neal:

    Sorry I wasn’t clearer in my post. What I meant to say is that my high bid (i.e., the bid I put into ebay and would be prepared to pay) may have passed the reserve, but the second highest bid did not so therefore the winning auction bid (one higher than second highest bidder’s price) was lower than the reserve. 8815Serge does relist some of his listings, as is his right. I started to chase a couple, hoping for lower reserves, etc but had the same frustrating results. So now I just avoid his auctions…Again, he has great LPs and is a high quality seller…but I think he may want to rethink best way to go to market.

  • Does anyone know if the TINA BROOKS – TRUE BLUE classic records press looks and sounds like that J.R. Monterose that went for over a grand? I have that one and it’s a great sounding record. Is the same true for the TRUE BLUE? If so I know what my next lp purshase is going to be : ) ! Any more info on the other great BN titles (classic records) that I should have but don’t want to spend the big bucks on the orig press?

  • I haven’t heard the Classic Records True Blue (it’s one of the harder ones to find) but three that I have and can highly recommend are:
    Hank Mobley 1568
    John Jenkins/Kenny Burrell 1573
    Lee Morgan Candy 1590

  • DG Mono (Richard Connerton)

    I had a single LP mono 33 1/3 Classic reissue of Blue Train and I wasn’t impressed…noisy, and, I dunno how else to say this but it felt kinda “forced”, if that makes any sense.

    But I didn’t realize Candy is on Classic, I’ll have to check that out cuz it’s gonna be a looong time before I can afford an original!

  • @BigBear
    Thanks for the clarification. Only 8815Serge knows why he’s listing the way he does, and it’s possible if he seldom sells anything at all, then he’ll change tactics. If, on the other hand, he’s happy with the number of auctions that do close, and feels what he’s doing is getting him a good price, sees little downside to how he’s doing it, it might be he’s pleased with his results. Like I said, there are plenty of sellers who will re-list something for months, years figuring that one day someone new will come along and buy it – and they’re right often enough, it seems, for them to keep doing it. One I remember was an Erica Morini I tracked because I had a copy. Sugarecords never budged on their price, kept re-listing it for at least a year – might still be out there for all I know.

  • @ Jim Neal

    Well said, Jim; I agree.

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