If we’re going to get to the bottom of the Nautiluso case, eBay is probably not going to be all that helpful, based on the initial response from their public relations people to our inquiries. We posed a few questions and actually had hoped to speak to someone directly at eBay, but we wound up talking to a PR person from an outside firm and she relayed the questions and relayed the responses. We’ll follow up again after the Thanksgiving holiday. Meanwhile, this is what eBay has to say about Nautiluso:
Duonri reminded me that I didn’t include this record from Nautiluso in the list: Jackie McLean, The New Tradition, Ad Lib 6601. This was listed in M- condition and wound up selling for $4,036, the highest price we’ve ever recorded for a jazz record on the Jazz Collector Price Guide. So I went back to the original listing in order to record it, and I noticed something I hadn’t noticed before: The seller says this one has the RVG in the deadwax? The question I ask: Is this possible — does an original pressing of The New Tradition have the RVG in the deadwax, or did he just make that up? I would have looked in my own collection for the answer but, unfortunately, I sold my copy of The New Tradition for a mere $400 nearly 20 years ago. Many of you may have heard this story before, but I sold a bunch of my rarest records in one shot so I could buy a boat. Six months later
We finally tracked down one of the buyers from the Nautiluso auction. Paul Sagerman is a collector in Tuscon, Ariz. He had purchased the LP: Thelonious Monk Plays Duke Ellington on Riverside. It was an original pressing in near mint condition and the price was between $500 and $600. Sagerman was the one who had original filed the negative feedback on Nautiluso back on October 14 when he suspected that the auction was not legitimate. However, he withdrew the negative feedback after he learned that the seller would accept Pay Pal. So far, Sagerman has not received his record and has filed a dispute with eBay. Originally, Sagerman said he had planned to bid on about 20 records, but was concerned when the seller did not respond to his questions. “I asked for a scan of the label, a scan of the back cover and
I just looked back again at the records we were watching from Nautiluso and the numbers are staggering. Here are some of the prices that we recorded:
Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568: $3,805
Sonny Clark, Cool Struttin’, Blue Note 1588: $3,750
Tina Brooks, True Blue: $3,249.99
Jutta Hipp With Zoot Sims: $3,242.99
J.R. Monterose, Blue Note 1536: $2,247.22
Tommy Flanagan Overseas: $2,247
Bill Evans, Waltz For Debby: $1,500
Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1540: $1,705
Lou Donaldson, Quartet, Quintet, Sextet: $1,175
That’s a total of about $23,000 for just nine records. Perhaps these were the ones that sold for the highest prices but, still, with 75 jazz records that week, you could still be looking at $60,000 or more. Maybe it’s not Bernie Madoff territory, but in our little world of Jazz Collectors it is quite a score if, indeed, the records don’t exist.
A couple of readers have already pointed this out in various comments: The feedback is starting to come in on Nautiluso and it is not very promising. One buyer has issued two feedback reports, stating the same thing: “Records never delivered from Oct. 16 purchase . Have opened claim with eBay.” Both of these claims were for classical records, but the notes are ominous, as is the fact that so far there has been zero feedback from the huge jazz auction we were watching: Nothing at all. If you go back to our original report on this alleged Jazz Vinyl Collection, we had pinpointed about 75 records, in pristine condition, all among the rarest of the rare in the world of jazz collectibles: Jackie McLean on Ad-Lib, Tina Brooks True Blue, Hutta Hipp on Blue Note, and many, many more. We were somewhat skeptical and many visitors to Jazz Collector
It’s been more than a month since the now-famous — or perhaps infamous — auction from the seller Nautiluso. I use the words famous and infamous quite loosely, of course, but it was certainly a major topic here in our limited world of Jazz Collector. Anyway, there is no feedback yet from this auction. None, zero, nil. I reached out this morning to someone who knows someone who knows someone who won a record and the record has not yet arrived. Hmmmm. I know many of you were suspicious in the first place and I’m sure this information does nothing to dispel the whiff of fraud you perhaps had scented in the air. If anyone in our audience has first-hand knowledge of anything — a record that arrived, or a record that clearly didn’t arrive — please let us know. At some point, if there’s no information forthcoming, we will contact eBay directly and see what they may have to say about it. For those of you new to the site and unaware of this auction, just type “Nautiluso” in the search bar at the top right of the page and you’ll be able to see all of the articles and comments dating back to our first post on the topic from October 5.
Jackie McLean, Jackie’s Pal, Prestige 7068. This one was in M- condition for both the record and the cover and it was another one out of the batch from Nautiluso. The price was $896. While we were there, we checked out whether there’s any new feedback on this seller from the amazing collection of a few weeks ago. So far, there’s nothing new to report. We’ll keep looking.
Art Farmer Quintet Featuring Gigi Gryce, Prestige 7017. This was an original New York yellow-label pressing and was offered by Euclid Records. The record was VG++ and the cover was M-. The price was $203.50, which is a bit more than we’ve seen in the past for this record, but certainly well deserved as an early Prestige with some great artists.
Curtis Fuller, New Trombone, Prestige 7107. This was an original New York pressing, also
We’ve been tracking jazz records on eBay for about five years and have built a database of more than 4,000 records. We don’t claim to have captured the sale of every high-priced record on eBay, but we’ve gotten more than our fair share. And, today, we will be entering into the Jazz Collector Price Guide, the highest-priced jazz vinyl we’ve recorded to date, and that is this: Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568. This was an original U.S. pressing and it was listed in M- condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $3,805. The previous highest price that we had recorded was for a copy of Sonny Clark, Cool Struttin, Blue Note 1588, which sold for $3,750. It is noteworthy that the Mobley record was sold by the seller Nautiluso, who had that massive collection of about 75 vintage jazz records that were all listed in pristine condition and which generated a little bit of skepticism within the Jazz Collector universe. We’ll continue to keep an eye out for comments on these auctions and we’ll continue to encourage winning bidders to let us know about the condition of their LPs. In addition
So there’s more on the big auction last week by the seller Nautiluso: The buyer who left the negative feedback yesterday? He has rescinded the negative feedback. His exact comment is: “Seller now agrees to accept Pay Pal. Emails appear to be legitimate.” It will be interesting to see what happens and whether the buyers are happy with the condition of their records. I will say that there is a strong tendency in the community to suspect fraud: In addition to what appeared on the Jazz Collector site, I received a few emails from people quite skeptical that this auction was for real. My personal feeling was to give the seller the benefit of the doubt, based on the fact that he
We’ve been off line for a couple of days, just got back, went to My Ebay and noticed that the auctions of the seller Nautiluso are now in the midst of closing. Wow! Wait till you see these prices. Here’s a start:
Jutta Hipp with Zoot Sims, Blue Note 1530. Like most of the others in this group, this was listed in M- condition for both the record and the cover. The price was $3,342.99.
J.R. Monterose, Blue Note 1536. Condition: M- for record and cover. Price: $2,247.22
Lou Donaldson, Quartet, Quintet, Sextet, Blue Note 1537. Condition: M-. Price: $1,175
Hank Mobley With Donald Byrd and Lee Morgan, Blue Note 1540. Condition: M-. Price: $1,705.
Tommy Flanagan Overseas, Prestige 7134. Condition: M-. Price: $2,247.
Bill Evans, Waltz For Debby, Riverside 399. Condition: M-
As noted, this is just a small sampling. There will be more to come. It would be great if some of the winners of this vinyl will report back to us on the condition and whether these records are, indeed, as pristine as they seem.