If yesterday was a Prestige day, let’s make today a Blue Noter, starting with Here Comes Louis Smith, Blue Note 1584. This looks to be an original West 63rd Street pressing listed in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. The bidding is in the $175 range with about four days to go. We were watching a different copy of the same record a few days ago and that one was in just VG condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It wound up selling for $561, so I would expect this one to fetch a higher price. Will it enter the $1,000 bin? Could be. According to Popsike, the highest recorded price for this record is $1,514. Not owning an original copy of this record myself, I haven’t listened to it in a long time. When I put a record on the turntable, I usually prefer an original pressing. But perhaps I will make an exception. After all, the personnel includes one of my all-time favorite alto players, none other than the infamous “Buckshot La Funke.”
Are we finally starting to see the Prestige records follow the same path as the Blue Notes? I’ve been quite surprised at the price of several Prestiges recently, including the Sonny Stitt record I mentioned last week and this one that sold yesterday on eBay: Bennie Green With Art Farmer, Prestige 7041. This was an original New York yellow label pressing. The record was listed in M- condition and the cover was excellent. Great pictures from the seller are always helpful in achieving high prices. Still, I wouldn’t have pegged this record to sell for $860, which was the final price. Careful readers may recall that I purchased an original copy of this record for 25 cents. It was sitting in the bargain bin at Mr. Cheapo’s record store in Mineola on Long Island. I typically never looked in the 25-cent bin because it was always junk. But this day I was looking to kill time and not go back to work and, voila, there was Bennie Green With Art Farmer. Now the condition was just VG for the record and VG for the cover. But it was literally a quarter, the same as the parking meter outside the store. Still have it. The record, not the quarter. Read more
Please allow me to dwell one more day on that Jazz Record Revival auction because there are a few more things to point out, as many readers have already done, particularly with that copy of Herbie Hancock, Maiden Voyage, Blue Note 4195 selling for a quite amazing $1,580.
How about this one, with the second cover: Art Blakey, A Night at Birdland Volume 2,Blue Note 1522. This was an odd one in that it had a Lexington Avenue address on one side and a West 63rd Street address on the other. It was clearly not a first pressing, particularly with that cover. But it sold for $236.50.
Someone on the previous post also mentioned this one:
Let’s close the loop on some of the rare jazz vinyl we’ve been watching here at Jazz Collector, starting with Miles Davis, Someday My Prince Will Come, Columbia, 1656. You may recall this was the record with the inner seal and signed by Miles, Hank Mobley, Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers, Jimmy Cobb and JJ. Johnson. When we first looked at this record there was one day left in the auction and the bidding was in the $300 range. The record wound up selling for a whopping $2,091.75.
Here are a few from the recent Jazz Record Center auction, starting with Red Rodney, 1957, Signal 1206. This was an original pressing listed in M- for the cover and probably VG++ for the record. We were commenting that there was no action in the auction but, of course, there was quite a bit at the end. The record wound up selling for $1,324.50. Thelonious Monk, Monk, Columbia 2291. This would not normally appear on a list of collectible records, but this was a promo copy with the white labels. The record was in M- condition and the cover was VG++. It sold for $114.37. From the same auction there were also . . .
I’m tempted to bid on this one, but I can’t figure out the condition: Bennie Green, Walkin’ and Talkin’, Blue Note 4010. This looks to have the West 63rd Street address and the deep grooves. The seller makes no mention of the ear or RVG. He also says it is a flat-edge pressing, which it’s not. So right away the seller’s credibility and knowledge are suspect. Then there’s the listing itself, whereby in the headline and the description the record is listed as VG-. But elsewhere on the same listing it is listed as VG+ with the additional descriptor that it “plays great!” (his exclamation point, not mine). We are now about four hours from closing and there are still no bids at a start price of around $200. If I knew it was a nice VG+ record and an original pressing, I’d think about a bid. As it is, however, I think I will pass. Obviously, others feel the same way.
I was mentioning 10-inch Blue Notes the other day, and now there is this:
Another slow week of posting for me. Sorry about that. But it’s Monday, a fresh week, a beautiful day and here I am back at my post full of fresh optimism. This week I vow to post at least once every day, starting with: Wayne Shorter, Speak No Evil, Blue Note 4194. This was an original pressing with the NY USA label, the ear and the Van Gelder stamp in the dead wax. Seller describes the record and cover as Ex, which probably translates to VG+ or VG++, based on the more detailed description in the listing. I’d probably grade it VG+ if it was my record. This one sold for $560. This seller had a bunch of other nice listings last week, but this one fetched the highest price. Here are a couple more: Sonny Rollins, The Sound of Sonny, Riverside 241. This was an original deep groove pressing with the white labels. The record was listed as Ex+ and the cover was Ex-. The price was $318.66. Ray Draper Quintet, Tuba Sounds, Prestige 7096. This was an original pressing with the yellow label and New York address. The record was rated Ex- and the cover was listed as VG. No idea why the seller varies the descriptions between Ex and VG. In any case, this one sold for $141.80.
This seller also had a large number of items last week, including:
I have quite a long watch list on eBay right now, so let’s get right to it. This is a record I’ve never seen before and, frankly, wasn’t even aware existed: A Swinging Introduction to Jimmy Knepper, Bethlehem 77. This is an original pressing with the red label and deep groove. I took a quick look at the personnel and was surprised to see the pianist listed as one “B. Evans.” I would have thought that the presence of Mr. Evans would have brought this record to my attention before. Perhaps it has and I just forgot about it. It wouldn’t be the first time. In any case, it’s got a great cover, it’s got Bill Evans on piano and it’s an original pressing from 1957. Also, it’s in M- condition. I would think there’d be a strong collectible market for this. We’ll see. So far there are no bids at $135, but there are still three days left to go before the auction closes.
Here are a few Blue Notes on our radar:
I’m thinking of reorganizing my records (again). I’d love to have all my Blue Notes in one place and all my Prestiges. Not necessarily in number order — then I’d feel compelled to fill in every number — but at least by artist, by label. It works for Blue Note, Prestige, Riverside, Verve, but what about the off labels — the RCAs and Columbias and Atlantics, and the smaller ones like Bethlehem and Transition. Do you want them all categorized by label in your collection? And can you ever find anything? It’s an endless conundrum, right? Once I had them organized by label and I didn’t like it. Now I have them alphabetically, but not all in the same place. It’s complicated, but I segregate original pressings from before 1970 from any non-original pressings and all pressings after 1970. It may be wacky, but that part works for me. Anyway, I’m thinking about this because I have a few new Blue Notes to incorporate into my collection and because when I watch on eBay my eyes often go straight to the Blue Notes, and I would like to capture that same feeling in my collection. For instance, here are some of the records I’m watching now:
Jackie McLean, Swing, Swang, Swingin’, Blue Note 4024. This is an original pressing that looks to be in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. Great record, right? This one is more than $500 already with a few days to go.
For as long as I’ve been collecting, it’s nice to know that there’s always something new to learn. Here’s a record I’ve like for a long time: John Lewis and Sacha Distel, Afternoon in Paris. I’ve only owned this as an Atlantic recording, black label, of course, and I frankly had no idea that it was originally issued in France under the Versailles label, Versailles, MDX 12 005. I just checked out the liner notes on my Atlantic pressing and it makes no mention of Versailles. It does mention that Barney Wilen was only 19 years old at the time of the recording, which is pretty incredible considering how well he plays on this record and how mature he sounds. Anyway, this copy was in VG++ condition for the record and M- for the cover, which was the soft cover that seemed to be typical of the European pressings in those days. This copy sold for $630. The highest price we’ve recorded for the Atlantic pressing in the Jazz Collector Price Guide has been $121.
This one was described in “like new” condition and, based on the picture and description, it looked like an original pressing: Sonny Clark, Sonny’s Crib, Blue Note 1576. The seller said he turned down a “buy now” request and let the bidding continue, which it did, topping off at $1,713.
This one wasn’t in nearly the same condition as Sonny’s Crib: Lee Morgan, Candy, Blue Note 1590. This looked to be an original pressing and it was listed in VG+ condition for the record and VG MINUS for the cover. It sold for $1,115.
This is the highest price we’ve ever seen for this record: Miles Davis, Cookin’ Prestige 7094. This was an original pressing that was listed in M- condition for both the record and the cover. It sold for $665.
How about a few records with Andy Warhol covers: