More Confessions of a Vinyl Addict, Part 1

Friends, my name is Al and I am a vinyl addict. It is necessary for me to confess once again because I have had yet another setback. Remember my mission to pare down my collection, which I have labeled The Great Jazz Vinyl Countdown? Well, as part of that endeavor I decided it would be wise to take inventory of my records so that I would know what I actually have, in intimate detail: Record, condition, provenance, value. I had never actually done this before, so yesterday I set up a spreadsheet and began the process. I started, naturally, with the Blue Notes, the 1500 series, Blue Note 1501, Miles Davis Volume 1. I pulled the record off the shelf, looked at the record, cleaned it, typed the information into the spreadsheet, put it back on the shelf and then pulled the second record, Blue Note 1502, Miles Davis Volume 2. Same deal: Looked at the record, cleaned it, wrote it down, then moved on to the next record.

What a mistake.

I was moving along fine through the first eight records in the

Blue Note 1500 series. I had all of the records, and they were all original pressings. Then I got to Blue Note 1509, Milt Jackson and the Thelonious Monk Quintet. I was sure I owned an original pressing of this and was breezing along confidently when I pulled the record off the shelf. Then I took it out of the sleeve, and looked at the label, and horror of horrors, what I saw was quite alarming.

I did not see 767 Lexington Avenue in beautiful script. I didn’t even see 47 West 63rd. Nor did a see a deep groove, nor did I feel the weight of heavy vinyl. What I saw was a label that had the address: New York USA. And my heart sank, and I looked down at the record, then looked up at the shelves in my room, where there are at least 3,000 records, and I thought to myself: “How can you call yourself a Jazz Collector when you don’t even have an original pressing of Milt Jackson and the Thelonious Monk Quintet, Blue Note 1509.” And then the old adrenaline kicked in as I obsessively, manically pulled Blue Note after Blue Note off of my shelves and once again I felt the familiar feeling of Jazz vinyl addiction pulsing through my veins.

What happened next? Stay tuned.


  • I bought my 1501-1511 (except for 1507 and 1508, which I have Lex.) when I already had the original 10″ issues for a long time. So these re-issues of mine are 47W or NYC. My 1509 is a heavy vinyl, but NYC. I was mulling the idea of getting rid of these re-issue series. The 10″ originals were concise in their conception, esp. the 3 Miles and 3 J.J. albums.
    The twelve inchers are a mixed bag, no unity of conception.
    Exception for Monk, vol. 2, with a session of May 30, 1952, issued nowhere else.
    My verdict has been to keep 1511 only and even to get rid of 1509 which is largely covered by the 2 10″ Monk albums and the Milt Jackson 10″.
    Courageous isn’t it?

  • …This is hitting too close to home Al, it’s time for another intervention I think. (Do I sense a series in the makings ? Perhaps we can get A&E to buy the rights to the TV show ! Kind of like “Hoarders meets Pawn Stars / Antique Roadshow” heh heh.) Hang in there my friend, we Jazz Collectors have to stick together during those ‘moments of clarity’. I went through the same issues with Blue Note 1507, 1577, 1586, 1588 etc. etc…

    “…Just pick yourself up, take a deep breath (& a little scotch) dust off those LP’s that don’t meet the grade and start all over again !”

  • Sometimes my old habits are too strong: I saw a nice version of Giuffre’s “Travellin’ Light” on Atlantic 1282, green DG stereo label. My adreline level got a boost.
    When I was about to bid, a few minutes before the closing, there was call for my wife on Skype. (she does not know I am still buying every now and then, she thinks I am only selling). I started to get nervous and, of course, I missed the deadline.
    Happy outcome: the reserve price was not met. The guy put it immediately for sale “buy it now” and I bought it for less than I was intending to offer (thanks to my wife!)

  • …Some things were meant to be Rudolf !!! heh heh. I love when that happens. (It’s that ol’ black magic that keeps us coming back for more.) Does anyone else out there get the feeling that this is becoming more of a support group for us lately ? Are we the “enablers” despite our wives best efforts to curb our addictions ? Naaaaaaah !

  • Al: IMHO, an other candidate for eviction should be: # 1526 – Clifford Brown. The album is incomplete, since it does not cover the full contents of the 2 underlying 10-inchers. I sold it off succesfully some time ago. May this give you an idea…

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