The Incredible Rise of the $1,000 Jazz Record

The $1,000 bin truly doth runneth over  days. It’s quite an interesting phenomenon.

Paul Chambers, Whims of Chambers, Blue Note 1534. This was an original pressing in VG++ condition for both the record and the cover. A few years ago, I bought a copy of this on eBay in similar condition for about $300. At the time, I thought I was overpaying. A few weeks ago I sold a separate copy on eBay for about $325. It was in nice condition, with a VG+ cover. This was not a record I ever expected to see in the $1,000 bin. This copy sold for $1,313.

Here’s another one I never expected to see sell for more than $1,000: Cannonball Adderley, Somethin’s Else, Blue Note 1595. This is a nice record, but has never been among the higher-priced Blue Notes. The highest price we had previously recorded for this in the Jazz Collector Price Guide was around $400. This copy was in mice M- condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $1,475.

This one almost entered the $2,000 bin:

J.R. Monterose, Blue Note 1536. This was an original pressing with the Lexington Avenue address. The record was in M- condition and the cover was VG++, with tape on the seams. It was signed by Ira Sullivan. It sold for $1,913.

Lest you assume this phenomenon is limited strictly to Blue Notes, how about this record selling for more than $1,000: Chet Baker, Chet, Riverside 299? The record was M- and the cover was VG++. The price was $1,137. I know this record is aided by the presence of Bill Evans, but we’ve never seen it sell for a price nearly this steep. There are others to add to this list. I will give more details in a later post, but some of the other $1,000 records to add to the Price Guide include: Sonny Rollins at the Village Vanguard; Sonny Rollins, Saxophone Colossus; Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1550; The Return of Art Pepper; Johnny Griffin, The Congregation, and Kenny Dorham Afro-Cuban.

17 comments

  • Don’t get me wrong – I’m a big Cannonball fan, and even have this lp. But I would never pay (and didn’t) $1,000+ for it. If I did, it’d be the only lp in my collection – I wouldn’t be able to afford anything else.

  • This is one of my absolute favourite LP’s, and I have multiple copies myself, but I can’t believe someone out there actually paid that much for this one, even in -M condition…

    If anyone wants an original 1st pressing of this LP in reasonably decent shape for a fraction of the cost, here’s my e-bay link:

    New item #220480845423 – Cannonball Adderley – Somethin’ Else Blue Note 1595 LP
    http://cgi.ebay.ca/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=220480845423

  • If anyone out there is interested, check out this great link dedicated to documenting all known pressings of Cannonball Adderley’s – Somethin’ Else LP:

    http://www.cannonball-adderley.com/1595.htm

    (It even has photos !)

  • Also one of my favorites! The one that got me (and a lot of people i think) in to all that jazz.Just for the writing of this i put the album on, and AGAIN it is refreshing, especially the underated solo of cannonball on Autumn Leaves (and H.Jones).
    I also will buy any copy that is in my budget (that means in this case the Japanese pressing and the 45rpm single-sided set (i know, it’s ridiculous, but this album has the magic for me), BUT a first pressing for 1000 dollars? No thanks. But i can understand that one who has the money will pay for it. Lesser albums have made the 1000 dollar bin.. For me this album was always a legendary one, but hey, some Rollins Fan will probebly laugh at this..(come on, R.)
    Also, as we all can see on ebay and the much apriciated Jazzcollecter, the prices for blue notes are different from all other labels.I think that has much to do about the whole “disigner’ atmosphere arround the BN label.Mayby the only label that is also collected by people who don’t really like Jazz. I have to admit, i also ‘believe’ in the BN magic…mayby because younger people can relate more to Hard Bob jazz.. after some years of BN listening you step over to the other labels..i have seen it happen with me and other friends.

    But to Don Lucky: About the pictures from the Something Else record you are selling on ebay: PLEASE, ..NEVER EVER show a mutelated ‘something else’ cover wthout warning,..I mean the Horror..!.. goosebumps all over the place..

  • Wow-THAT many versions of “Somethin’ Else” out there? Maybe it’s worth 1K to have that first run off the press(so to speak). Or perhaps not. I know that if I HAD the money for some of those 10,20,30K turntables out there,I’d probably not think to much over the $ for vinyl to play on them. It’s interesting to note how the gorgeous tone of Cannonball on “Dancing In The Dark”,Hank Jones’ touch on “Autumn Leaves”(especially on the ‘out’ chorus) and Miles lyricism throughout always sounds GOOD. Hell,it’s long been a fave of mine whether I was spinning the lp on my Webcor compact system in my bedroom-Mom:”Turn that racket down!”- or my current Linn LP12. Neighbors:”I wish he’d turn that racket down.” It ALWAYS sounds good because it speaks from-and to-the heart. To these ears,the pressing-unless it’s really crappy-is almost besides the point.

  • Should we have a contest for worst album in the $1000 bin? I’ll go with Chet.

  • First post here i have a Blue Note question if someone can help. I’m new to trying to get a couple original pressings. I won 4165 Destination Out and 4170 Free for All for 100 and 75. About mint minus but crappy covers and stickers on the labels so I figured that’s why they were cheap. I thought I did ok until I noticed the R under the blue note. Not originals? Thanks

  • i thougt that the ‘r’ under blue note is only missing
    in early 1500 series
    If you have the 43West 61 adres on it, and the rvg(vangelder) in wax, and the mono version, than you have an original.
    And if cover is that bad , than 75-100 dollars is a normal price i think.

  • yes, this is one of my favorite jazz lps. have 3 japanese versions:
    DOR-129
    GXF3001
    GXK8042

    DOR-129 is my prized possessiom. got it while record hunting in Japan.
    As with most jap lps, condition is NM
    cheers

  • In responce to Maarten Kools with regards to the photo of that missing corner on my e-bay posting for the original first pressing of Cannonball Adderley’s – Somethin’ Else LP… It’s tough to see such a classic in this condition I’ll admit. I picked this one up from another e-bayer who wasn’t so forthcoming about the condition, never the less, it’s still one of the truely great jazz albums, and least we forget, “you can’t judge an LP by it’s cover” right… This one is so pure it doesn’t even need a flashy cover photo !

  • I’m not sure if anyone else noticed but Lee Morgan’s City Lights (BN 1575) recently went for $2655!

  • Judging from the range of comments coming in-some of which are even related to “Somethin’ Else”-lol-it looks like this site might benefit from a ‘one size fits all’ letters bag. Any thoughts on how that could happen-or if it’s even doable?

  • p.s. – Happy Birthday Cannonball !

  • In response to Bob Brooks request for info above: Just for future reference, here are some great links to help you identify the various Blue Note pressings & associated addresses:

    (1.)http://philosophy.ucdavis.edu/may/public_html/Bluenote.html

    (2.)http://www.gokudo.co.jp/Record/BlueNote4/index.htm

    (This one has all the original covers & back cover photos !)

    Happy hunting !

  • The ‘R’ on the label (along with ‘Inc’ after ‘Blue Note Records’ doesn’t appear on first pressings until 4018 Walter Davis Junior ‘Davis Cup’.
    Bob Brooks’ LPs should have New York USA labels and the other indicators Maarten mentions (43W61 on the cover).
    The best link I’ve found re first pressings is http://47west63rd.blogspot.com/2005/02/allan-songer-on-original-blue-notes.html

    I agree with ceedee re the ‘letter bag’, though no suggestion on how to achieve it!

  • thanks for correcting me, geraint.

    the link that don-lucky gave (http://www.gokudo.co.jp/Record/BlueNote2/index.htm) is really nice, it always helps me to see my collecting-records aspirations in perspective..

    Does somebody know more about this man.,i mean, this is probably his collection..unbelievable!)

  • To Marteen Unbelievable, but, at the risk of being taken as the picky guy, some are not in so nice condition. fantastic collection, anyway… it always amazes me to see how interest about Blue Note is still strong…I’ve an equivalent copy of this 1000 $ cannonball. Certainly did not pay 1000 $ ! We can be sure about one thing : Blue Note is the only label that you can collect with investment plan in your mind. Prices are stronger than ever. I think many people, even non jazz fan, will pay the top dollar for those fine cover and records…I mean Rvierside 299, for example, is an extreme example, not a trend.

    Ma

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