I was watching a recent auction on eBay from the Jazz Record Center focused on books, magazines, programs and other ephemera. I was curious because I have amassed a large collection of this type of stuff over the years, including duplicates, and I’m thinking about scaling back what I have, including the idea of adding a storefront to the Jazz Collector site. Just thinking about it at this stage, and I am not always the best at turning thoughts into action, so don’t anyone get too excited. Anyway, one of the items that caught my eye was this book: Four Lives in the BeBop Business, by A.B. Spellman. This was a first edition and the Jazz Record Center put a start price of $65 on it. And I was thinking, I have a copy of this and if someone offered me $65 I’m pretty sure I would sell it. But there were no bids on this item, so I have no idea at this point what the real market value would be.
Sorry for another long delay between posts. I have been watching eBay, and here are some of the jazz records that have caught my eye, starting with Sonny Rollins Plays, Period 1204. This is an original pressing listed in VG+ condition for both the record and the cover. As most of you know, I’ve been collecting jazz records for more than 45 years and Rollins has always been one of my heroes. I’ve had a complete collection of Rollins originals for many years, with this one record as the exception. Somehow in all of these years, perusing all of these record stores, buying all of these collections, Sonny Rollins Plays on Period has eluded me and left a gap in my collection. I realize I can fill this gap through eBay, but I choose not to, at least for now. This copy is priced at $500 already and there is a bidder. I’ll keep looking for a copy that is priced closer to what my sensibilities will allow. It’s not the money, as per my usual, it’s the principle.
Here’s a record that has always intrigued me but I have never owned: Billie Holiday and Stan Getz, Billie and Stan, Dale 25. This was an original 10-inch pressing. It looked to be in VG+ condition for the record and probably VG++ for the cover. It sold for $317.99. I know very little about Dale records. I have a couple of 10-inch LPs, but I can’t think of a 12-inch LP. Based on the description of this record, it seems like it may have been a bootleg label. This was recorded from a radio broadcast from Storyville all the way back in 1951. I’ve never heard the record, and I’ve only seen it a couple of times, always at a price beyond my sensibilities. And, yes, $317.99 is still beyond my sensibilities.
Two readers separately sent me the link to this, which is listed as: Sun Ra Outtakes 1957 Acetate LP Unreleased Transition. This looks to be the real deal, music that was never issued from Sun Ra’s Transition sessions, as well as sessions featuring Dave Coleman, Joe Gordon and Roy Haynes. If you’re interested, you should read the entire listing for more details. The item is listed in VG condition and there are audio clips accompanying the listing as well. It is available at a buy-it-now price of $6,500 or you can make a best offer. As you all know this is not my area of interest/expertise, so if anyone would like to weigh in on this, please be our guest.
Sorry for the entirely unexpected break in the action. Back to business: Walter Davis Jr. , Davis Cup, Blue Note 4018. This was an original West 63rd Street pressing. The record was in M- condition and the cover was listed as Ex. The final price was $1,104. Welcome to the $1,000 bin, which is getting quite crowded these days. I remember seeing Walter Davis Jr. many times in the early 1970s. When Sonny Rollins made one of his “comebacks” from retirement, Davis was in his regular band, along with Al Foster and Bob Crenshaw. He often also had a Japanese guitarist by the name of Yoshiaki Masuo. Anyway, Davis was always a terrific soloist and accompanist and had a very positive vibe. I don’t have an original pressing of this record, just the United Artists reissue, but it is definitely one I’d love to own someday. Just not for $1,100.
Sometimes here at Jazz Collector we get interesting and random comments on older articles. Or comments get buried under newer comments. There’s a tab on the right size of the home page (and subsequent pages) for “Recent Comments.” I’m not sure if many of you ever click it, but it’s a good idea. For example, I’m not sure how many of you
Here’s a jazz vinyl potpourri for today, starting with John Coltrane, A Love Supreme, Impulse 77. This looks to be an original mono pressing with the Van Gelder stamps in the deadwax and the orange labels. The record is in VG++ condition and the cover is in Ex. The bidding is getting close to the $450 range with a little more than a day left in the auction, as of this writing. Although A Love Supreme has pretty much always been regarded as a masterpiece, I really saw it as a big collector’s item until the last few years. Sort of like Kind of Blue: Even though there may be more copies of these records than some others, there is also much greater demand for original pressings. These records not only appeal to collectors, but pretty much to anyone with a love for jazz.
I find this one really interesting:
John Coltrane, Coltrane, Impulse 21. This was a mono pressing with the white label promo label. It was listed in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It wound up selling for $493.88. Wow. From the same seller was this: John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman, Impulse 40. This was also a white label promo copy, also in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. This one sold for $282. Then there were the two on Prestige: George Wallington, Jazz For the Carriage Trade, Prestige 7032. This was an original New York yellow-label pressing with the “Not for Sale” stamps on the label and cover. It was listed in M- condition for the record and probably VG++ for the cover. The start price was $499 and it did not sell. Somewhat surprising, right? Then there was:
Wow, did you see the final price of that copy of My Favorite Things? It was $645.
And the Billie Holiday, Lady in Satin, was $338.33.
Here are a couple more from the same seller, hard to explain:
Stan Getz, Sweet Rain, Verve 8693. This was a stereo pressing in excellent condition for the record and VG++ for the cover. It sold for $102.50.
Stan Getz, Jazz Samba, Verve 8432. This was a stereo pressing, sealed. It sold for $138.50.
Kenny Burrell, Tender Gender, Cadet 772. This was also sealed. It sold for $124.49. What would this normally sell for? Ten dollars? That’s a lot of money for some cellophane.
If you want to have some fun, check out some of the other completed auctions. Read more
Here are a few more jazz vinyl auctions we are watching on eBay. This one is from the seller bobdjukic and it is always suprising: Billie Holiday, Lady in Satin, Columbia 8048. This is a six-eye stereo pressing listed in VG++ condition for the record and VG++ for the cover. It is always surprising in that this seller is somehow able to get collectible prices for this record, where no one else can. This one is already at more than $120. And the explanation is . . . ?
This is from the same seller at, at this point, it is actually priced at less than the Billie Holiday record: John Coltrane (et al), Tenor Conclave, Prestige 7074. This looks to be an original New York yellow label pressing. The seller lists the record in VG++ condition and the cover as well, but it seems clear from the pictures of the cover that the real condition is VG+. Perhaps why the bidding is relatively low, at about $115 with a few hours left on the auction.
I now have duplicate copies of this great Blue Note and will be figuring out my next step once I get a chance to grade and listen to both copies:
One of our readers has been in a 78-RPM frame of mind recently and has sent me a couple of interesting 78 auctions on eBay, specifically boxed sets. Here’s the latest: Billie Holiday Sings, Mercury C-118. We all recognize this cover from the 10-inch LP of the same title and packaging with the iconic David Stone Martin illustration, but this is a boxed set that includes four 78s. Everything seems to be in about VG+ condition. This is definitely a cool item, particularly if you are into 78s. The price is already more than $200 and the auction closes later today. I do have an issue purchasing 78s on eBay, however, and it has to do with shipping. I’ve purchased 78s on eBay and I’ve sold 78s on eBay and shipping these fragile items in the mail is a challenge. I’ve sent some that I though were packaged perfectly, using recommended packaging material from the industry leader, yet they still broke in the mail. For an item like this, I’d be a little nervous. By the way, I play my 78s on a portable Califone record player, the type they used to use in public schools. The 78s sound really good on them, they are convenient and you can easily buy one for less than $100 on eBay. We haven’t asked this in a while, but are their 78s collectors out there, and how do you handle purchasing/playing your records? Also, what do you collect, and why?
Today we shall catch up on that 10-inch auction from the Jazz Record Center that closed yesterday. All in all, considering that the market is relatively soft, I thought these records fetched a pretty good price.
Lou Donaldson and Clifford Brown, New Faces, New Sounds, Blue Note 5030. Look at that beautiful cover. The record was M- and the cover seemed somewhere between VG++ and M-. It sold for $522.88.
Jutta Hipp, Jutta, Blue Note 5056. This one looked to be in beautiful condition, M- for the record and the cover. It sold for $720.
Lou Donaldson Sextet, Volume 2, Blue Note 5055. This was an original, original first pressing, based on the listings on the back cover of other Blue Note 10-inch LPs, and it was in M- condition all around. The price was $385.
Here’s a non-Blue Note that got a nice price: Billie Holiday Sings, Mercury 118. This was an original pressing with a beautiful cover illustration by David Stone Martin. One of his very best, I’d say. This one was in beautiful condition, M- for the record and the cover. It sold for $260.