Top Dollar (or Euro) For European Pressings

Mobley's Message Jazz VinylCatching up on some loose ends, Terry sent me a link to the following record: Duke Jordan Trio, Vogue Swing M33 323. This was the original French pressing of this 10-inch LP, which was listed in M- condition for the record and Ex for the cover. It sold for $2,939.99. As Terry said in his email to me, the prices of the French Swing records are getting top dollar and this would certainly support that, unless anyone thinks nearly $3,000 is a bargain for a Duke Jordan record.

While we’re in Europe: Hank Mobley, Mobley’s Message, Esquire 32-029. This is the original British pressing of the Prestige record. It was listed in Ex condition for the record and only VG for the cover. It sold for $337.44. I’ve been watching a lot of these U.K. pressings and they seem to be going up in value, particularly the early Prestiges. I can see why: The covers are cool and the pressings sound great. If I didn’t have an original Prestige — and in some case, even if I do — I’d be very happy to have one of these original Esquires.

Here’s another one:

Sonny Rollins, Worktime Esquire 32-038. This was also an original U.K. pressing. The seller didn’t really grade the record, which seemed to negatively impact the final price (as it should). If I were to guess I’d say the record and cover were in at least VG+ condition and possibly VG+. The final price was $224.27.

10 comments

  • I really enjoy the British and the French issues,the covers are different and a lot of times artistically better. The recordings sound much superior to the original U.S. Disc. I would like someone to tell me why this is.I have also found different liner notes and some with a lot of interesting information which is not on the domestic issue. Thanks !

  • Musically/artistically, all the music recorded for Vogue, P.I.P. France during Henri Renaud’s trip to N.Y. in 1954 was of a very high level. The harvest of his trip gave material for some eight 10″ albums on the French Swing label, asubsidiary of Vogue. Period Records in New York re-issued some material on three 12″ albums. But the original ten inchers pressed on France are very scarce, especially in NM or M condition. The three thousand mark illustrates this in a perfect way.
    Mobley’s Message on Esquire with the faint blue cover is a lovely album, which I prefer to the US original. But this just a very personal preference.

  • terryfromflorida

    Rudolf…I have a beautiful original 10″ Thelonious Monk M33.342 Swing lp. Do you have any idea how many of these may have been pressed? These last couple posts got me thinking because I also have the 10″ Jimmy Raney New Jazz 1101 from the previous post. Although I don’t have any evidence to support it, I always “feel” like these may be rarer than many of my other lp’s, including 10″ Blue Notes…any input would be appreciated…

  • I agree Art, I’ve A/B’d a couple of the Esquire pressings and they did sound better than their American counterparts. The difference is the British used a much higher quality of vinyl, Rudy Van Gelder mastered the plates for both pressings. If only Prestige had gone for quality rather than try to save a few cents I feel that more of their sessions would be held in a higher regard as Blue Note titles from the same time period.

  • terryfromflorida: I have the Monk too. Last time I saw it for sale physically was on the Paris flea market. The standholder had ten copies or more. So Vogue had dumped their stock. The year was around 1961. The price he asked was 8 francs. Nobody wanted 10″ albums at the time and Vogue had already re-issued the session on 12″ with four additional tracks leased from Blue Note. So I guess the Swing version has had one pressing run. But I am not sure.
    The Raney on Prestige IS very rare. Ten inch Blue Notes were more common.

  • Woody: sellers of Esquires tend to use this sales ploy. And it works. I see this fable repeated every time. But, I disagree: I have my Prestige albums in first NYC pressings, and later, in first N.J. pressings and I have the corresponding Esquires. They are both of the same high standard. Prestige’s first pressings up to 1958/1959 were as good as Blue Notes and Contemporary. The rot came in only after 1960.

  • I Have some Items on my Ebay Page…A Few Mosaics etc

  • Terryfromflorida

    Rudolf: Thank you for once again sharing your vast knowledge with us…it’s appreciated…

  • For me the best european jazz LP
    : Dusko Goykovich Swinging Macedonia on Philips label from 1966. Very collectable record.

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