Let’s catch up with some of the items on this week’s auction from the Jazz Record Center, starting with one of the real big ones: Hank Mobley Quintet, Blue Note 1550. This was an original pressing described as being in “near-new” condition. That’s pretty nice condition, I would say. You would expect this to sell for quite a bit and it did: $2,926.
This record reached a new high for the Jazz Collector Price Guide and almost cracked into the $1,000 bin: Bill Evans Trio, Explorations, Riverside 351. This was an original blue label pressing in M- condition for the record and the cover, which was actually described as being in “extraordinary” condition. Looks like four bidders got into a bit of a war and knocked the price up to $910.01.
Jackie McLean, Lights Out, Prestige 7035. This was an original New York pressing. The record looked to be in M- condition and the cover was probably VG+. The price was $758.
Sorry for taking such a long break over the Memorial Day weekend. But we are back to our post at Jazz Collector and ready to begin posting regularly again, starting with a catch-up of items we were watching last week on eBay.
First there was that copy of Miles Davis and the Modern Jazz Giants, Prestige 7150, that was autographed by Miles, John Coltrane and Thelonious Monk. It was offered by the Jazz Record Center so there was some level of credibility attached to the autographs, although the listing didn’t say anything about independent verification. The price for this was $4,305. It’s certainly a one-of-a-kind item, so there is probably no price too high to have surprised us. This seems pretty reasonable for such a rare item. Here are a couple more from the same auction: Art Pepper, Intensity, Contemporary 3607. This was not only signed by Art Pepper, he also put the date and his home address with the signature. The record and cover both looked to be in M- condition. This one sold for $150.27. This one was not signed: Johnny Hodges, In a Tender Mood, Norgran 1059. This was an original yellow label pressing in M- condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $161.50. I was watching this because I like to keep an eye on the original Norgrans, just to see that there is still a collector’s market for them, since they really reflect artists mostly from the pre-bop era, with a few exceptions, of course. This one also has that weird kind of cover from the era, with a picture of a white woman as the sole image on the picture of an album by a black male artists. Is it really possible that
Still have my eye on that Miles LP autographed by Miles, Trane and Monk being offered on eBay by the Jazz Record Center. Not that I’m going to spend more than $2,500 on it. My interest is more as an interested observer, as it usually is when the prices get that high. Here’s another one I’m watching from the same auction, closing in around three hours. It’s another autograph, but the packaging is a little odd: Finger Poppin’ With the Horace Silver Quintet, Blue Note 4008. This is an original stereo pressing with the original cover, which is not autographed. The record looks to be in M- condition and the cover is probably M- as well. In addition to this, the Jazz Record Center is including a Liberty cover with Horace Silver’s autograph on the back. One cover for the record, I guess, another, with the autograph for framing — although, for me, having the autograph sitting right below the Liberty logo is more of a turn off than a turn on. Now, if the autograph were on the original cover, that would be much more enticing. Anyway, the start price for this is $100 and there is already a bidder so it looks like it will sell.
My goodness, here’s a jazz collectible to make the heart flutter (my heart, at least): Miles Davis and the Modern Jazz Giants, Prestige 7150. This is an original yellow label pressing, although the record itself is a reissue. No big deal, right? Except this one is autographed by, get this, Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Thelonious Monk. That’s about as an impressing a lineup of jazz autographs as you could get on one record. This one is being auction by The Jazz Record Center so I would be one to trust that the signatures are original. Perhaps Don-Lucky or another autograph collector might shed more light. In any case, the bidding on this one starts at $2,500 and there is already a bid so the record will sell. If I had this one, I’d frame it for sure.
Here we go again: Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568. This is an original original pressing, based on all of our feedbacks and comments last week, and it has the New York 23 on the B Side. This one is in M- condition for both the record and the cover and, based on the seller’s description, it sounds like it’s in amazing shape. The auction closes later today, in about four hours, and the bidding is in the $2,000 range. My guess is that it goes in the $4,000 range. If it was from a seller with more history and more of a reputation using this description it would probably break the $5,000 barrier. Maybe even more. And maybe it will with this seller. We’ll see soon.
I was curious to see how some of those autographed records from the Jazz Record Center would do on eBay and the results are now in. There was definitely a strong demand.
Chet Baker Quartet, Jazz at Ann Arbor, Pacific Jazz 1203. This was an original pressing with a Chet Baker autograph on the cover, signed and dated from 1973. The record looked to be in M- condition and the cover was probably VG+. The price was $461.
There were several LPs autographed by Miles Davis in the auction, including: Miles Davis, In Person, Saturday Night at the Blackhawk, Columbia 8470. This was an original stereo pressing with the six-eye logo and it was in M- condition all around: In fact, it was described as being in “amazing” condition. It was signed on the back by Miles in red ink. It sold for $566. Also, Miles Davis, Bags Groove, Prestige 7109. This was a later pressing with the blue labels. This one was signed not just by Miles, but by Sonny Rollins as well. It looked to be in VG++ or M- condition and it sold for $195.50. If I had this cover, I’d get rid of the blue-label record and replace it with one with yellow labels, even a New Jersey yellow label. It would just feel better to look at the cover knowing there was a yellow-label pressing inside. Just part of my own insanity, I guess.
A Bill Evans autograph. That’s one of the items on the latest auction from the Jazz Record Center. To me it’s kind of cool to have, but not sure how it fares in the collectibles market. There was that letter from Bill Evans to John Coltrane that sold for $38,000 several years ago. A friend of mine spent a few hundred dollars for a high school yearbook signed by Evans. Anyway, this is a copy of the record Bill Evans, Trio ’65, Verve 8613. It is a second pressing signed on the front by both Evans and Chuck Israels. The start price is $100 and so far there are no bidders.
From the same auction is an Autographed Letter From Charles Mingus on the stationery of Debut Records. It is to a fan/customer who was complaining about a specific pressing in his recording from the Cafe Bohemia. A rare, very cool find indeed. This one is priced starting at $500 and there is already one bidder.
Slow time on eBay this week for collectible jazz vinyl. To save time, rather than going through all the listings I’ll often do searches of Blue Notes or high-priced records or other filters to find the items most interesting to the Jazz Collector audience. Using those same filters I always use, hardly anything too exciting or expensive came up for this entire week. Perhaps its a hangover from the bobdjukic auction that seems to have everyone so enthralled. Having said that, there are always items of interest to watch, bid on, envy or all of the above.
Horace Silver, Six Pieces of Silver, Blue Note 1539. This one has the West 63rd Street address which makes it a second pressing, or at least not a first pressing. The record is in VG++ condition and the cover is VG. What makes it interesting is that it is signed by Horace Silver. What’s that worth? We’ll see. So far there are no bidders with a start price around $200.
Here’s a reason to read auctions carefully: Ben Webster Soulville, Verve 8274. This is advertised as an original pressing when it clearly is not. This has the MGM label while an original has the trumpeter label. Nonetheless there is a bid of about $80 on this records. The seller has minimal feedback. Not a good way to get started on eBay.
It was interesting watching the recent auctions of autographed vinyl and ephemera from the Jazz Record Center. With autographed items there’s always going to be a question of authenticity but there’s no reason to believe these items weren’t genuine. There are autographs and then there are autographs — I remember a couple of years ago there was an auction of a letter from Bill Evans to John Coltrane that sold for $38,000. There was nothing in this grouping that came close to matching that in either uniqueness or value, but there was some nice prices nonetheless, including:
John Coltrane and Milt Jackson, Bags and Trane, Atlantic 1368. This one, which me mentioned the other day, was signed by Coltrane, Jackson and Hank Jones. It sold for $758. Others: Miles Davis, Early Miles, Prestige 7168. This record is an early reissue, with a yellow label. This also has autographs By Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins. It sold for $377. 89. This is not a record we track often in the Jazz Collector Price Guide because it is not an original but, suffice to say, it would not normally sell for that amount sans autographs. One more: Duke Ellington, Such Sweet Thunder, Columbia 1033. This was an original pressing signed by Ellington. It sold for $191.38. Under normal circumstances, no autograph, this is really like a $10 or $20 record.
Oh, it’s a nice time on eBay when we get to watch auctions from both the Jazz Record Center and bobdjukic.
How much would you like a John Coltrane autograph? I know I would. This is from the Jazz Record Center: John Coltrane, Bags and Trane, Atlantic 1368. This is listed as an original mono pressing with the red and purple labels — although, for the live of me, I still can’t get the original Atlantics straight once they are past the black labels — but the key to this record is that it is signed by Coltrane, Milt Jackson and Hank Jones. The record and cover appear to be in about VG++ condition. The price is around $750 with more than two days to go. From the same auction is a Jazz at the Philharmonic program from 1956 with a bunch of cool autographs, including Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz, Connie Kay, Milt Jackson, Roy Eldridge and Flip Phillips. There’s one bidder for this one, so far, and the price is $100.
Perhaps I’m naive, but when I see an autographed record I always assume that it is legitimate and not a fraud. It seems kind of weird to me that someone would try to copy the autograph of a jazz artist to try to inflate the value of the record when, in many cases, the autograph actually devalues the record, another oddity that I will never understand. I was watching this record on eBay: Thelonious Monk, Work, Prestige 7169. This was a yellow label pressing and an “original” in the sense that it was the first pressing of this record, which is a reissue of an earlier record. Normally it would be worth about $50 or so, but this one happens to have signatures on it from both Monk and Sonny Rollins. To me, this is a gem, assuming the autographs are legitimate, which I do. I tend not to collect autographs, although something like this is tempting, so I passed the listing on to one of our loyal readers who does collect autographs. I see from the geography of the winning bidder that our friend did not bid for this. The start price was $500 and there was one bidder. Don-Lucky — what happened? Seems like a good price for this one.