One of the great things about having so many collectible records is that I can always dig somewhere into my collection and find a classic record I haven’t listed to in a while. I did that last night, putting The New Miles Davis Quintet, Prestige 7014, on the turntable for the first time in a number of years. It’s a classic and, of course, the first Miles record with John Coltrane. A few things struck me about this record. Miles and Trane were the same age, both 29 when the album was recorded, yet they were at much different points in their careers and in their development. Miles was fully formed and his playing was absolutely confident. Trane’s playing was much more tentative and his style was not nearly as developed as it would become in the ensuing years. You can hear elements of his budding genius, but just elements and otherwise you hear someone still working on finding himself. For the hell of it, right after listening to this LP, I put on A Love Supreme and, obviously the difference was quite stark. Another thing about this record is
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I was watching a few jazz vinyl auctions as they closed the other day with some degree of interest because of what I considered to be the clear misuse of the word “original.” Here’s an example: Lee Morgan, Lee-Way, Blue Note 4034. This was labeled as an “original mono pressing from 1964.” What does original mean in this case? It is clearly not a first pressing, since the address on the label is New York USA. The seller is a veteran eBayer and I’ve bought from him a few times and I’ve always had good experiences. So he knows the difference between a real original and a pseudo original. Was a buyer duped in this transaction? Well, there were pictures of the label and the New York USA labels were clearly stated, so if someone thought this was an original first pressing, he was being quite careless and/or was ignorant. It’s hard to tell from the price. The record sold for $136.50, but the back was stained and in VG- condition. My bet is if the listing did not use the word “original” then a second (or third, or fourth) pressing of Lee-Way with a stained back cover would not have sold for more than $100. So the seller probably made a few more bucks and the buyer got a later pressing with a stained cover.
Here’s another one that’s hard to figure:
Here are some results from the recent eBay auction by the Jazz Record Center. We were watching some of the Miles Prestige recordings with interest because you may recall last month we saw an original copy of Steamin’ sell for only $75 in very nice condition, which struck us as very low and a bit odd. Especially when an original copy of Relaxin’ sold for nearly $740. I think the results this week from the Jazz Record Center are probably more indicative of the real market. Miles Davis, Steamin’, Prestige 7200. This was an original pressing with the New Jersey address. It had a promo stamp and was listed in “near new” condition, which is certainly M- for the record and the cover. The price was $307.99. Miles Davis, Workin’, Prestige 7166. This was also an original New Jersey yellow label pressing without the promo staff. It was described as similar condition to Steamin’, M- all around, and sold for $305.01. This next one
Sonny Rollins, Tenor Madness, Prestige 7047. This is an original New York yellow label pressing closing in a few hours. The record and the cover are both listed in VG+ condition. The current price is about $300.
Look who’s back, the seller bobdjukic, who is somewhat controversial among readers of Jazz Collector. This is one of his: Bill Evans, Waltz For Debby, Riverside 399. This looks to be an original mono pressing with the blue label and deep grooves. There six days to go on this auction and there are already 17 bids and nearly 300 views. The guy certainly has a knack. Record and cover are listed in VG++ condition and the price is nearly $500.
Sonny Clark, Sonny’s Crib, Blue Note 1576. This looks to be an early/original pressing that is in VG++ condition for both the record and the cover. The price is close to $500 and the auction closes tomorrow.
Just got an email from the Jazz Record Center that they have a new auction up this week, so let’s take a look and see what’s there:
This one has a start price of $2,000, and it’s already gotten a bid, so we should expect quite a high price: Lee Morgan, Candy, Blue Note 1590. This is an original pressing in what is described as “near-new” condition, perhaps played once. The cover looks to be equally pristine.
Here’s another we wouldn’t mind putting on our own shelves: Elmo Hope, Meditations, Prestige 7010. This is an original New York yellow-label pressing, also in “near new” condition for the record and M- for the cover. The start price is $400 and there are no bidders yet, but there will be.
Bill Evans, Portrait in Jazz, Riverside 315. This is an original deep groove pressing with the small reel logos on the label, as opposed to the larger reels, which I had forgotten was a distinguishing characteristic of Riverside. Someday, perhaps in 2013, I will go through all of the vast research we have accumulated here at Jazz Collector and put together a more definitive guide to what makes an original pressing on various labels. I think the information is here on the site, it just needs to be mined. Anyway, this one is in near new condition and has a start price of $200.
Bet you’re wondering if I’m OK. I am. Just been a busy period before the holidays. It’s been so long since I’ve posted on Jazz Collector or even been on eBay that all of the items I was watching are now closed. Which gives me a nice opportunity to give a big review, starting with:
Horace Parlan, Us Three, Blue Note 4037. This was an original West 63rd pressing in what was described as VG++ condition for both the record and the cover. It also had the original shrink wrap, if that means anything to anyone. I guess it means the cover was well protected for all of these years. The top bid on this was a very nice one, $1,136. But guess what? It didn’t meet the seller’s reserve price, so it didn’t sell. We’ve seen this one sell for as much as $1,725 in the Jazz Collector Price Guide, so I guess the seller had certain expectations. I had a copy of this record in very nice condition, mentioned it on Jazz Collector and was offered $1,500 to sell it. I did. Haven’t missed it since, to be perfectly honest.
Similar situation with this one from the same seller: Sonny Clark Trio, Blue Note 1579. This was an original West 63rd pressing. The record was in VG++ condition and the cover looked to be VG. The top bid was $717 but, again, it failed to sell because it didn’t meet the seller’s reserve price.
This one did sell and I thought it might fetch a higher price: Sonny Clark, Sonny’s Crib, Blue Note 1576. This one was in VG++ condition for the record and probably similar condition for the cover. It was offered by one of the top eBay sellers and sold for $1,405. A nice price, but we’ve seen this one sell for more than $3,000 in the Jazz Collector Price Guide.
I’ve been so busy with real work lately, I’ve missed a lot of nice jazz vinyl on eBay, including some of the heavyweights that regularly occupy the $1,000 bin. Anyway, here’s an update of some items I’ve missed, all of which will eventually find their way into the Jazz Collector Price Guide.
Kenny Dorham, Quiet Kenny, New Jazz 8225. This was an original deep groove pressing with the purple label. It was listed in M- condition for both the record and the cover and from the pictures with the listing it looked absolutely pristine. It sold for $2,247.66.
Sonny Clark, Cool Struttin’, Blue Note 1588. This was an original pressing that looked to be in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for $1,593.88
Paul Gonsalves, Boom-Jackie-Boom-Chick, Vocalion LAE 587. This was an original British pressing that looked to be in M- condition for the record and the cover. It sold for $1,783.
Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568. This was the one with no New York 23 on one side and, to me, is an original, although some sticklers beg to differ. The record looked to be in VG++ or M- condition and the cover was probably VG++. The price was $3,340. Question: What do you think it would have sold for if it had the New York 23 on Side 2?
Lou Donaldson, The Time is Right, Blue Note 4025. This was an original original and it was probably in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. The price was $570.
Paul Chambers, Whims of Chambers, Blue Note 1534. This was not an original pressing, but a West 63rd pressing. It seemed to be VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for $243.50.
Finally, there was the sealed copy of Waltz For Debby, Riverside 399. It sold for $590. We have seen Waltz for Debby fetch a higher price tag in the Jazz Collector Price Guide, but this is certainly top dollar. Hope the seller is satisfied — if he even opens it.
Tommy Flanagan, Overseas, Prestige 7134. This is one of the major rarities and it sold like one. The record and cover were both in M- condition. The price was $3,216.66. That’s the first time we’ve seen the record surpass the $3,000 mark in the Jazz Collector Price Guide.
While we’re on the topic of $3,000 records: Sonny Clark, Cool Struttin’, Blue Note 1588. This was an original pressing listed in M- condition for the record and the cover. This is the listing that mentioned Jazz Collector as a pricing/value source, which we appreciate. The sale price was $3,600.
This didn’t quite make the $3,000 bin, but it gave it a good run: Kenny Dorham, Quiet Kenny, New Jazz 8225. This was an original purple label pressing in near mint condition for the record and the cover. It sold for $2,650. Do you think there’s a distinction between a record described as “near mint” versus one described as “mint minus?” Just thought I’d ask. “Near mint” has a nicer ring to it, IMHO.
Let’s catch up on the results of the latest jazz vinyl auction from the Jazz Record Center. I follow their auctions closely because, to me, they are the most reputable of all dealers and, therefore, I see their auctions as fully reflective of market realities, no hype.
Zoot Sims, Down Home, Bethlehem 6051. This was an original red-label pressing in M- condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $510. I recently picked up my first copy of this record and listened to it the other day. Quite nice: Great Zoot and nice to hear early Dave McKenna. The copy I purchased is in M- condition for the vinyl and VG+ for the cover. Very pleased.
Sonny Rollins, The Sound of Sonny, Riverside 241. This was an original white label pressing in what looked to be M- condition for both the record and the cover. The price was $426. This one went for a little more than usual: Sonny Rollins, Sonny Boy, Prestige 7207. The record looked to be M- and the cover was probably VG++, with a couple of minor blemishes. It sold for $170.39.
Grachan Moncur III, Evolution, Blue Note 4153. This was an original New York USA pressing in M- condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $688.90. Wow.
Lee Konitz, Tranquility, Verve 8281. This was an original pressing with the trumpeter logo. It was in M- condition for the vinyl and probably VG++ for the cover. It sold for $111.87.
Hank Mobley and Lee Morgan, Peckin’ Time, Blue Note 1574. This was an original West 63rd Street pressing in VG+ condition for both the record and the cover. Interesting, isn’t it, that we’re no longer surprised when VG+ records sell for more than $1,000. This one fetched a price of $1,009. Interesting to look at the cover of this record, given most of the covers that Blue Note was producing at the time, usually featuring some kind of picture of the artist. Simple graphic of a red suitcase and not sure what that has to do with Peckin’ Time or Mobley. There are also no pictures on the back cover. A little bit strange, no? I wonder if there is a story behind the cover?
Here’s another one that broke into the $1,000 bin: Freddie Hubbard, Open Sesame, Blue Note 4040. This looked to be an original pressing, although the seller put in the wrong catalog number. It was listed in VG++ condition for the vinyl and Ex for the cover, which I still take to mean around VG+, although it could be better. This one sold for the same price as the other, $1,009.
I seem to be a bit focused on $1,000 Blue Notes today. Here’s another:
Eric Dolphy, Far Cry, New Jazz 8270. This is an original pressing in M- condition for both the record and the cover. It is quite a lovely record, and rare, and the condition is great, and the picture with the add is quite nice as well. Still, the highest price we’ve ever recorded for this record in the Jazz Collector Price Guide is around $230. This will sell for quite a lot more than that. The current price is $515 and there’s nearly a day to go.
Blue Mitchell, Blue’s Moods, Riverside 336. This is also an original pressing, with the blue label and the deep grooves. The record is in VG++ condition and the cover is VG+. The current price is around $400 and there are still four days to go before the auction closes. This one will also set a new record for the Jazz Collector Price Guide.
And here are a couple of nice Prestiges:
Phil Woods, Woodlore, Prestige 7018. As you may recall, this one was sitting at $200 with no bids and I was considering taking the plunge myself. Glad I didn’t. The record wound up selling for $527 — way beyond my comfort level — and, to make it worse, there is now a dispute about the sale, as you can see on the Jazz Collector site under the earlier post. From the same seller was: Charlie Rouse, Yeah!, Epic 16012. If you look at the listing, you’ll have a hard time figuring out the record’s condition. It says both ex+ and ex- and it talks about light scratches that will sound on both sides. Hmm. Someone paid $538 for this record. We’ll see if there’s a dispute about this one as well.
Wow — didn’t expect this record to reach the $1,000 bin: Hank Mobley, Workout, Blue Note 4080. This was an original New York USA pressing, with the RVG and ear in the deadwax. It was in beautiful M- condition for the record and cover and sold for $1,009.99.
This one also entered the $1,000 bin, but not all that suprisingly:
Here is one of the conundrums of doing the Jazz Collector Web site. I still collect records and occasionally buy them on eBay. So, when I spot a record that interests me, do I dare share it with the world? I usually do. Case in point: Phil Woods, Woodlore, Prestige 7018. This is an original New York yellow label pressing. The record looks to be in M- condition and the cover looks around VG+. This is a nice early Prestige I’ve only owned as a Japanese pressing. The auction closes tomorrow and there are no bidders at a $200 start price. I would pay $200 for this record. I could just lurk in the background, put in a snipe and hope no body else is interested, which I may, indeed, do. But I’d certainly have a better chance for success without blabbing about my interest to the whole Jazz Collector world out there, wouldn’t you say? Actually, I’m surprised there are no bidders yet for this one and there’s only one bidder for this record from the same seller: Lucky Thompson, Lucky Strikes!, Transition 21. This is an original pressing with the booklet. The record is in M- condition and the cover is probably VG++.There’s only one bid at $200 for this. To be fair, the highest price we’ve seen for this in the Jazz Collector Price Guide has been a little more than $300, so perhaps the $200 is not so unreasonable. It just looks like a record that should sell for more, at least it does to this collector.
May 22, 2012 Price Guide
One of our readers sent me an email and asked me to include this in the Jazz Collector Price Guide: Art Pepper, Modern Art, Intro 606. This was an original pressing in VG+ condition for the record and VG- condition for the cover. It sold for $730. In the headline the seller mentions that this is a 1951 pressing, but that cannot be possible. They weren’t even pressing 12-inch records in 1951, were they? It was during that time that the 10-inch LP was the “standard.”
Anyway, I will add this to the Price Guide, although I have to admit I’ve been quite remiss in doing regular updates. I know I used to use the Price Guide all the time when I was selling records on eBay. I found it very helpful. And I know that people are using it now and referring to it fairly often, because I see the analytics from Google. It seems to be particularly popular in Japan. Really. So I will slog along, put aside a day or a half day somewhere in the next couple of weeks, and make sure I plug in all of the records I’ve been promising to plug in since I last did a major update about four months ago. It would certainly help the motivation if there were a few kind words about the Price Guide as well.
At some point soon I will be updating the Jazz Collector Price Guide. My inclination is to not include some of the recent sales we’ve been watching here, such as Getz/Gilberto and Miles Davis Four and More since they are clearly aberrations and not indicative of the overall market. I think they would tend to give people false expectations as to real market value. What do you think?
In the meanwhile, here are some other jazz vinyl auctions we are watching on eBay.
Hank Mobley, Mobley’s Message, Prestige 7061. This is an original yellow-label pressing with the New York address. The record and cover are both listed in M- condition. The price is $165.50 and there are more than two days left in the auction. Tempting, although I have a feeling the bidding will definitely surpass the $600-$700 range and perhaps slide into the $1,000 bin. All of which would put it out of reach for me.
Louis Smith, Smithville, Blue Note 1594. This is also an original pressing. The cover
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.
Here are a few more results of jazz vinyl auctions by the Jazz Record Center last week. Just in case anyone is interested, I have no vested interest in these auctions or special relationship with the Jazz Record Center. I like to watch their auctions as a bellwether because they are probably the most reputable seller in the market.
Working With the Miles Davis Quintet, Prestige 7166. This was an original yellow label pressing with the New Jersey address. It was a review copy in mint condition. The price was $472.35. There was a time when you could get the Miles Prestige records relatively inexpensively, but not anymore.
Here’s another nice one from Prestige: Stan Getz and Zoot Sims, The Brothers, Prestige 7022. This was an original New York yellow label pressing in M- condition for the record and probably VG++ for the cover. This one has the frame cover. The price was $234.72. How often are you going to find a record like this in this kind of condition? Nice.
Here’s a Blue Note that, surprisingly, did not break into the $1,000 bin.
Sorry I haven’t posted for a few days, but, judging by the comments, you guys seemed to do pretty well without me. In any case, I return with some items I’ve been watching on eBay, starting with some jazz vinyl that seems to indicate the clear split in the market between the super-collectibles, i.e., original Blue Notes et al, and the many other records that were collectible at one time but seem to have lost some of their market/cachet. Starting with Eddie Costa, Guys and Dolls Like Vibes, Coral 57230. This was an original pressing, in VG++ condition for the record and probably about VG+ for the cover. We’ve covered this in the past for the Jazz Collector Price Guide and it has sold for as much as $136. The seller did not do himself any favors by failing to mention in his listing that the pianist on this date was Bill Evans. It’s also a terrific record. There was one bidder who got this record for $30. From the same seller was Johnny Hodges and Duke Ellington, Back to Back, Verve 8317. This was an original pressing with the trumpeter label in M- condition for the vinyl and probably the same for the cover. Again, there was one bidder and a price of $30. Is there so little interest in Hodges and Ellington these days? One more, also Guys and Dolls by the Manhattan Jazz All-Stars, Columbia 8223. This was an original stereo pressing inVG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It is also a nice album, was somewhat collectible at one time, and features Zoot Sims, Phil Woods, Dave McKenna and others. This one didn’t get a single bid at $20.
Happy New Year to everyone. Here are a few more items going into the Jazz Collector Price Guide. No links on these.
Jimmy Raney Quartet, New Jazz 1101. I like this one because of the maroon and white label, which you rarely see. There were just a few 10-inch New Jazz LPs, so they are pretty cool, and pretty rare. This one was probably in VG or VG+ condition for the record and the vinyl. It sold for $157.50.
Now a bunch of Blue Notes:
Lee Morgan, Lee-Way, Blue Note 4034. This was in M- condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $600.
Lou Donaldson, Wailing With Lou, Blue Note 1545. This was an original West 63rd pressing in M- condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for $688.
Lee Morgan, Candy, Blue Note 1590. Also an original pressing, of course, this one in VG+ condition for the record and the cover. It sold for $1,343.
Dexter Gordon, One Flight Up, Blue Note 4176. This one was in M- condition for the record and VG for the cover. It sold for $200.
Hank Mobley, Soul Station, Blue Note 4031. Record was M- and cover was M-. Price was $1,465.
We need a new explanation for this one: Horace Silver, Song For My Father, Blue Note 4185. Admittedly this is a great, classic record and this was an original mono pressing in near mint condition for both the record and the cover. Why is there a new explanation needed? Conventional wisdom has said that because of the initial popularity of this record, there has always been a relatively abundant supply of original pressings in decent condition. Conventional wisdom may be changing. This particular copy sold for $405. Our previous high for this in the Jazz Collector Price Guide was $334 and, at the time, we considered that to be an aberration. What’s this?
And this? Gene Ammons, Blue Gene, Prestige 7146. This was from the same seller and it was also in near mint condition for the record and the cover. You’d normally expect this in the $40-$50 range, maybe a drop higher because of the condition. This copy sold for $164.50.
This next one got quite a high price, but not a surprising one:
It may be the holiday season around much of the world, but eBay never takes a vacation. Neither, apparently, does Jazz Collector. Here is some interesting jazz vinyl we’ve been watching on eBay. We’ll start with the $1,000 been. This one is still for sale: Hank Mobley, Hank, Blue Note 1560. This is an original pressing that’s listed in near mint condition for both the record and the cover. The price is already more than $1,100 and there are still two days to go. This is also a regular to the $1,000 bin: Kenny Dorham, Quiet Kenny, New Jazz 8225. This was an original pressing, deep grooves, purple label, and it was listed in VG++ condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $1,415. Merry Christmas for someone. John Jenkins with Kenny Burrell, Blue Note 1573. This was an original pressing that was either M- or very close to M-, based on the seller’s description. It sold for $1,156.99.
Here are a few interesting items closing in the next day or so:
Let’s catch up on some of the rare jazz vinyl we’ve been watching on eBay, starting with: Sonny Rollins, Saxophone Colossus, Prestige 7079. This was an original pressing with some very nice pictures. The seller provided very little information and he had less than 30 feedbacks. Still, the record sold for $1,247. Here’s another copy of Saxophone Colossus that sold at around the same time from a well known and highly regarded seller. This one was listed in VG condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for $1,050. Interesting that the prices were so close, despite the disparity in the condition. Shows the value of knowing the seller, either from experience or just by brand name, even on eBay.
This one was interesting as well: Joe Henderson, In ‘N Out, Blue Note 4166. This one certainly looks like an original, with the mono cover, New York USA labels, etc. But the seller never makes mention of the ear in the deadwax, so you do wonder. It looks to be in VG++ or M- condition for the record and cover, and it certainly looks cool with the original shrink wrap and price. It sold for $511.01, so someone must have been pretty sure, or quite hopeful, that there is an ear in the deadwax. This is the second highest price we’ve ever seen for this record in the Jazz Collector Price Guide.
Here are some recent jazz vinyl sales that we somehow missed. This one is among the rarest of the rare and collectors seem to covet it regardless of condition: Jackie McLean, The New Tradition, Ad Lib 6601. This one was in VG condition for the vinyl and VG- for the cover. It sold for $688.
Hank Mobley, Mobley’s Message, Prestige 7061. This was an original pressing with the New York address. The record was in VG++ condition and the cover was VG++ as well. The price was $665. I remember this as one of the few collectibles for which I paid top-dollar at Dayton’s back in the early 1980s. In those days, top dollar for this was about $80, and psychologically, that was a tough hump to get over for me, but I spent it. Then, I wound up selling it a few years later for about $200 and my copy now is a Japanese pressing.
I would have thought this next one would have fetched a lot more money, but the listing was a little confusing and the condition of the cover wasn’t described:
Miles Davis, Kind of Blue, Columbia 1355. This was an original promo pressing with the white and red label and six eyes. For the most part, promo copies of jazz records don’t necessarily add to the value. With Kind of Blue, however, that is not the case: We usually see the promo copies selling for a premium. I can understand why: It looks way cool and has the smell of authenticity of an original pressing. This copy was in M- condition for both the record and the cover, with a very nice picture, and it sold for $555. There were 31 bids. quite a high number.
There’s been a lot of chatter on the Jazz Collector site about the auction last week by the seller bobdjukic, who always seems to generate a lot of interest, partly because of his extensive use of hyperbole but moreso, methinks, because of his ability to generate high prices. Here are a couple of his auctions we were watching: