Here’s a sampling of email from the past few days. We start with our old reliable friend CeeDee who sent us four links under the subject line: “‘Give me Liberty or give me . . . uh, can I get back to you on that?’ plus two.” One of the links was one that we’ve previously written about: Wayne Shorter, Adam’s Apple, Blue Note 4232. This was the original mono pressing with the shrink wrap that sold for, gulp, $997.50. Next was Lee Morgan, the Gigolo, Blue Note 4212. This was also a mono Liberty pressing. I had never considered this to be a collectible Blue Note, but perhaps I’ll have to change my assessment. This one looked to be in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for $417.
This one fetched quite a nice price on eBay: Marty Paich Quartet featuring Art Pepper, Tampa 28. This was an original pressing with the red vinyl. It was listed in Ex condition for both the record and the cover, and the seller certainly posted some nice clear pictures. The final price was $1,181. That’s the highest price I recall seeing for this record, although there was one in Popsike that I must have missed that sold for $1,225.
Then there was this one that didn’t get a bid at all: Lee Morgan, Candy, Blue Note 1590. This looked to be an original West 63rd Street pressing, unless I’m missing something. The seller’s description was all over the place in terms of the condition. At one point he said it was strong VG+, then VG. He also mentioned the word “pops,” which is not something you want to hear unless
Wait a second. Did you see what happened with this record I mentioned the other day: Clifford Brown Quartet, Blue Note 5047? This was an original 10-inch Lexington Avenue pressing. Original Blue Note, but, as noted by Rudolf, a reissue of the French Vogue material. Anyway, this one was in VG++ condition for the record and the cover and we were watching the auction with about a day left and there were still no bidders at a start price of about $500. I wasn’t sure if the record would sell at all. It did, for the whopping price of $1,535. There were two bidders and three bids and they all came in the last few seconds as snipes, I would presume. Talk about a bidding war. Wow!
I had thought about bidding on this when the price was relatively low, but I never would have won it anyway:
This will be fun. Last night I had another one of those very pleasant listening sessions up in The Berkshires, fueled by a few beers, a few vapes and the knowledge that I could play my music as loud and late as I pleased with no neighbors or anyone else to complain. I was watching politics on television as I do so often these days, taking particular delight in the latest polls showing that the blowhard, maniac, crazy man at the top of the Republic ticket is in steep decline and, IMHO, may not even make it to election day without having some kind of collapse/mental breakdown, if, indeed, we could even tell the difference between a nervous breakdown and the behavior he exhibits every single day on the campaign trail. After a couple of hours of this I had enough and decided to enjoy some music. Read more
I go to sleep to music each night. I am still archaic enough to have an iPod and I have created about 50 playlists, all ballads and soft music, and I rotate among them and put them on random play. I find it quite soothing and relaxing and, apparently, so do my usual bedfellows, which would be The Lovely Mrs. JC and the two dogs Marty and Gordon. So last night I was listening and, at random, there came “Who Can I Turn To” by Dexter Gordon and then “Say It (Over and Over Again)” by John Coltrane, and I was listening very closely and both performances were quite lovely and brilliant in their own ways. And, of course, it got me to thinking about who are my favorite ballad players and what are my favorite ballad performances. And, of course, I couldn’t fall asleep because I was mentally going through all of my records and trying to pick out my favorite artists and performances. In the end, before I eventually nodded off, I came up with some thoughts and decided to share them here with you this morning. Read more
So, back in the Bronx, I had a pile of about 50 records. Of the records in that pile there were probably about 10 that I really wanted. But I sensed that the woman wanted to get rid of records and taking more seemed like the right approach. So I made an offer that I thought was fair, considering the condition of the records and the reality that many of the records in the pile were relatively worthless. The offer came out of my mouth and the words were still just hanging in the air when I could see the woman physically recoil as if she had just swallowed a platter full of insects. She repeated the number I had just said and gasped: “The Jackie McLean record alone is worth more than that!” Which, to be fair, would have been true if the Jackie McLean record was in excellent condition. But it wasn’t. Then she started going through a list that she had compiled with values for some of the key records. But there was clearly a disconnect. All of the values she had compiled were for records in M- condition. The records in the pile were not in M- condition. None of them.
And now we have a very interesting item in the Jazz Collector in-box. A few days ago we received an email with the intriguing subject line: “Dexter Gordon record found dumpster diving in LA.” It’s not something you see very often. And here were the contents of the note: “Hello, I was dumpster diving in LA today outside a house they cleaned out. The bottom on the dumpster was thousands of jazz records of someone’s collection. The owner of the house was old and I think the just threw out all his stuff. It was a shame it was such a huge collection. I grab two crates that I could get to. One record that made me think was a Dexter Gordon record, looks like maybe a tear press as it was just hand written on. I have a pic. Is this something that might be worth something?” I asked him to send me a picture, and he did, as follows:
Now immediately recognized the two tracks as coming from the Dexter Gordon album, Doin’ All Right, Blue Note 4077. But on the original album these two songs are on different sides. Read more
The other night I was sitting in the living room with The Lovely Mrs. JC and we she was reading and I wanted to put on some music. I asked what she would like and she asked for something mellow. I said I could do that. So I went up to the shelves and stared for a while, you know, how you just stare at an open refrigerator waiting for inspiration. For “mellow” my go-to choices would typically be Bill Evans or Coltrane Ballads or perhaps a Chet Baker, since The Lovely Mrs. JC is a fan of all of the above. But I wanted something different and I somehow settled on a Johnny Hodges record, In a Mellow Tone, Norgran 1092. Normally, Hodges is not someone that I would put on the turntable, but she asked for mellow and mellow was actually in the title of this record and it had always been one of my favorite Hodges LPs. Listening to it was quite a revelation. The music is of a pre-bop vintage, but it is actually quite timeless and absolutely beautiful. If you have it, put it on, and perhaps pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy. From there, I wanted to move to something a little bit more modern and I chose
Catching up on my jazz vinyl watch list on eBay. Here are some of the items I missed, starting with Blue Mitchell, Blue’s Moods, Riverside 336. This was an original pressing with the blue labels, reels and microphone logo, etc. The record was listed in M- condition and the cover was VG+. The final price was $540. I know that this record has always been prized among collectors and has gone for pretty high prices, as seen here — higher than most of the Riverside catalogue, except for perhaps Waltz for Debby and maybe one or two others. What I’ve never understood is “WHY?” I know it’s a nice record, but what is it about this particular record that has driven up its value over the years?
This is a Blue Note that’s also seemed to rise in value compared to other records released around the same time:
Here are the results of a few other jazz vinyl auctions we’ve been watching on eBay, starting with Kenny Dorham, Afro-Cuban, Blue Note 5065. This was an original 10-inch pressing with the Lexington Avenue label. The record was listed in VG+ or VG++ condition (I’d vote for VG+, based on the description) and the cover was listed in VG condition with a big stain on the front that spread to the back. The stained cover would certainly negatively impact my interest in the record, but not for the winning bidder, who is spending $902 for this record.
This was another one that was in not-so-great condition but still wound up selling for a fairly hefty price: