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.
When I was buying and selling regularly on eBay a few years ago I would monitor the listings religiously. Every day I would go through all of the listings, one by one, page by page, and I pretty much never missed a thing. These days, I’m more likely to do occasional searches and focus on items I’m most interested in. Last night I had some time, so I went through my old routine of listing by listing, page by page. Here’s some of the jazz vinyl I watched.
Dizzy Gillespie and Stan Getz, Diz and Getz, Verve 8141. This was an original pressing with the trumpeter logo. The record was in M- condition and the cover was VG+, although it seemed to have original shrink wrap. The start price was $29.95. There were no bidders. Really? When I started collecting this would have been a nice commodity, hard to find, great artists, great collectible label. And it’s got quite a nice cover to boot. Now it’s not worth thirty bucks? Wow. How about Stan Getz and Chet Baker, Stan Meets Chet, Verve 8263. This one says “trumpet logo” in the headline, but there’s no picture of the label so I actually have to wonder if it is original. The record was listed in VG++ condition, close to M-, and the cover was VG+. The price was $57.
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.
Wow. That Ben Webster record I mentioned yesterday — Ben Webster, Soulville, Verve 8274 — sold for a whopping $201.50. Although the seller listed it as an “original” there was a clear picture that showed it was an MGM pressing. What do the MGM’s sell for, generally, $20 or $30, at best. The bidders either weren’t paying attention to the picture or they mistakenly thought it was a bobdjukic auction.
Johnny Griffin, A Blowing Session, Blue Note 1559. This was an original pressing in VG condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for $415. These original Blue Notes are so coveted and hard to get that $415 for a VG seems like a reasonable expectation. I bet is sounds nice too. Although this one failed to sell at all: Sonny Rollins, Newk’s Time, Blue Note 4001. The record was listed in VG condition and the cover VG+. The start price was $400, but there was no action.
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.
Many of the jazz vinyl auctions we’ve been watching on eBay have ended, so here’s a bit of a summary, starting with some of the final prices on the recent auction from the seller bobdjukic:
Cannonball Adderley Quintet in Chicago, Mercury 60134. This was an original stereo pressing in M- condition for the record and the cover. It sold for $410. I’m not going to comment on the prices of the records I’m listing here. They tend to speak for themselves, no?
John Coltrane, Giant Steps, Atlantic 1311. This was not an original pressing. It was a fairly common mono pressing with the red and purple labels and the white fan logo. The record was in M- condition and the cover was VG++. It sold for $142.50.
Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto, Getz/Gilberto, Verve 8545. This was an original stereo pressing. The record and cover were probably in M- condition. The price was $361.
John Coltrane, Ballads, Impulse 32. This was an original orange label pressing. The record was in M- condition and the cover was VG++. The price was $410. Our previous high price for this in the Jazz Collector Price Guide was $205.
Joe Henderson, Mode For Joe, Blue Note 4227. This was a Liberty pressing. Liberty Pressing. It was in M- condition for the record and VG++ for the cover. It sold for $154.02.
To keep the discussion on this a little longer. I was perusing eBay last night and there was another copy of Getz/Gilberto, Verve 8545, also a stereo pressing, also in M- condition. It sold for $37, which is higher than normal. The other one from bobdjukic is at $219 and closing later today. While perusing, I also came upon this nice record: Stan Levey, Grand Stan, Bethelehem 71. It was sitting there at $25 and there were no bidders and I was contemplating placing a bid even though I already own a copy in M- condition. I think the seller missed an opportunity here: This is one of those records where if you know it, and you know the identities of the musicians, it becomes much more interesting. Among the musicians on this record are Sonny Clark and Richie Kamuca and it is, as you’d expect, a terrific record. It’s also not so easy to find, certainly tougher to find than Getz/Gilbert0. This one was in VG+ condition and sold for $27. The highest price we’ve ever seen for this record in the Jazz Collector Price Guide is $90.
Many of you in the Jazz Collector audience complain about the seller bobjdukic, but you have to give the guy credit – whatever he does, he is able to get prices that no one else can dream of. I’m watching several of his auctions now and am pretty amazed at where the bidding is going. He must have regular customers who trust him and are well satisfied with what he delivers. Here are a few cases in point: Stan Getz, Getz. Gilberto, Verve 8545. Was there a more popular, more widely produced jazz album in the 1960s? Could you waltz into any record store now (if you can find one) and find a copy of this record in reasonable condition? This one has 11 bids and is currently priced at $219 with more than a day to go. Miles Davis, “Four and More,” Columbia 2453. Again, this is a great record, but not all that uncommon. This one has been bid up to more than $100. Cannonball Adderley Quintet in Chicago, Mercury 60134. This is a stereo pressing. Again a great record, but not that hard to find, even in nice condition. This one has been bid up to $178.50.
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.