Another UK Esquire and an Audiophile Question

Back with another Esquire Prestige to start with, if you will all kindly indulge my new obsession: Donald Byrd, Kenny Dorham, Gene Quill, Phil Woods, Pairing Off, Esquire 32-026. This is an original UK pressing listed in VG+ condition for both the record and the cover. It’s a another cool cover, IMHO, illustrating the instruments of the two sets of pairs, the trumpeters and altoists. It’s quite a bit different than the U.S. version, which was released as a session led by Phil Woods. Bidding is in the $120 range with more than a day left on the auction.

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Mail: Byrd, Monk, Sun Ra

Catching up on some email. Here’s the story of a fun score from a new reader:

“Hi, I am fairly new to jazz vinyl collecting and listening. I have been drawn to the 50’s and 60’s jazz and LOVE your site. Unfortunately so much of this vintage jazz is way out of my budget. I have been buying when and what I can afford. Wanted to share this: This past weekend I was in a vintage shop with my wife and wasn’t sure I would find anything. In the back was a small box with some records. I start flipping through them like I always do when I find records in vintage/antique shops. I run across a Donald Byrd – Royal Flush BLP 4101 original pressing. The vinyl itself is VG in appearance, plays somewhere between VG and VG+ and the cover is VG+. The price on the album was $10. I was elated and couldn’t get the money out of my wallet fast enough! Hope I didn’t bore you. Thanks for your site and keep the posts coming as it is helpful in my jazz education!” Read more

Full House: Two Byrds and Three Blue Notes

Back on eBay again after yet another unexpected absence, which are becoming all to frequent, unfortunately. Anyway, here’s some of the jazz vinyl we’re watching, starting with a pair of Byrds: Donald Byrd, Byrd in Paris, Brunswick, 87 903. This is an original French pressing listed in VG+ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. Actually, the seller lists the record in VG++ for the record, but states that the audio quality is just VG+ with some background noise. Somehow, for me as a collector, I’d prefer that the record sound good as opposed to look good. Anyway, this one has a start bid of $349 and a buy-it-now price of $500, which is the top price we’ve seen for this particular pressing on Popsike. I don’t own this particular record, but I have a beautiful pressing of the other Byrd in Paris Brunswick record, the one with the picture of Byrd on the cover eating French Fries. That one has already broken the $1,100 bin. Not sure if it’s the music that is more enticing, or the cover.

The other Byrd is Byrd’s Eye View, Transition 4. The record looks to be in VG++ condition, based on the seller’s description, and the cover looks to be about VG+. There is also the booklet, which is described as being in “perfect” condition. Bidding is in the $525 range and, by the time most of you read this, the auction will probably be closed. This one is a regular visitor to the $1,000 bin, so I certainly won’t be surprised if this copy ends up there as well, considering the condition.

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A New Perspective on Jazz Vinyl

We will being today’s post with two of our favorite records, starting with Donald Byrd, A New Perspective, Blue Note 84124. As you can see from the “8” at the beginning of the catalogue number, this is a stereo pressing. It is an original, with the New York USA label, the ears, Van Gelder, etc. This is being offered by the seller anilin1000 from Germany, who has been selling off his collection due to age — his own and not the records. This one is listed in M- condition for both the record and the cover. The bidding is in the $150 range, which is somewhat surprising, since the stereo pressings don’t usually sell for that much. I see one stereo pressing on Popsike for about $125, and one for a bit higher that was autographed. Hey, it’s a great record so I don’t begrudge anyone willing to pay top dollar for it. I often play “Cristo Redentor” for people who don’t really know jazz, and without exception (so far) it always gets a very strong positive reaction, probably more so than any other jazz record I can think of.

This is another favorite that just came onto eBay:

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The Byrds is Coming

donald-byrdTraffic’s been a little light on Jazz Collector the past few days. In retrospect, perhaps the “When Your Smilin'” headline did not quite capture the zeitgeist of what is going on around here, and around the world. In any case, I have been able to return do eBay after a few days in a dark hole, figuratively of course, and I will once again look to jazz and my records for comfort and  safety and inspiration. This is a record I was watching with interest on eBay: Donald Byrd, Byrd in Paris Volume 1, Signature 1039. For some reason I had always thought of this as a MAJOR collectible, but I guess I was wrong. This copy was listed in VG+ condition for the record and the cover and, based on the seller’s more detailed description, this sounded reasonable. The record sold for $100. At first I thought the price was missing a zero, but then I went to Popsike and discovered that, while this was on the low side, it wasn’t completely unreasonable. Live and learn.

Then there was this weird Donald Byrd record:

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Another Stupid List: Favorite Blue Note Tracks

Shades of Redd Jazz VinylThis 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

Classic Vinyl From The Jazz Collector Era

Johnny Griffin Jazz VinylOur friends at funkyousounds are back on eBay with some nice jazz vinyl closing this week, including Johnny Griffin, The Kerry Dancers, Riverside 420. This looks to be an original blue label pressing with deep grooves. The record is listed in VG++ condition and the cover is VG. The auction closes later today and the price is in the $170 range. Donald Byrd, Fuego, Blue Note 4026. This is an original West 63rd Street deep groove pressing. The record and cover both look to be in VG+ condition. The bidding is in the $220 range with one more day to go. One more: Miles Davis, The New Miles Davis Quintet, Prestige 7014. This looks to be an original pressing with the New York hello label and the original green cover. The record is listed in VG++ condition and the cover is VG+. The price is now in the $300 range, also with one more day on the auction.

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Propheting and Profiting From Jazz Vinyl and Memorabilia

Kenny Dorham Jazz VinylHad my eye on this one: Kenny Dorham and the Jazz Prophets, ABC Paramount 122. This was an original deep groove pressing listed in Ex condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It sold for $343. I’d recently had an email exchange with a reader who said he’s been watching this record and, in a period of just a few weeks, he’d seen the price range from $28 to $1,000. I saw I thought of it as as $400-$500 record, but more in pristine condition. So, from my perspective, this seems to be around the market value. At least it was the market value for this particular copy. I once had an opportunity to buy a beautiful copy of this record at the Jazz Record Center in New York for $100. I wasn’t particularly flush at the time, so I passed. Then I went home and changed my mind. Came back a few days later and the record was gone. I asked Fred about it. He said he had made a mistake in pricing it at just $100 and I should have jumped at the opportunity. That was probably 25 years ago. I finally got a copy of this record in the Baltimore collection almost exactly two years ago. Have yet to listen to it. Perhaps I will correct that oversight later this evening.

Here’s some stuff from my email inbox:

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What’s it Worth to You: Kind of Blue Signed by Miles, Trane and Paul Chambers?

Kind of Blue, Autographed VinylPerusing eBay this morning and came upon this very interesting, and very expensive, item: Miles Davis, Kind of Blue, Columbia 1355. This is described as a limited edition pressing of Kind of Blue, with the back blank. The seller says this was issued for record executives and promoters, which seems possible, although I’ve never seen one before, and I’ve been looking for 45 years. The thing with this one is that the back isn’t exactly blank — it’s been signed by Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Paul Chambers, with a “Best Wishes” thrown in by Trane. It looks pretty authentic, although I’m not an expert on autographs. It is listed in VG++ condition for the record and the cover looks pretty nice, although not actually graded. The seller says it came from her husband’s collection and original priced it at $25,000. It is now up for auction with a start price of about $5,000 and a buy-it-now price of $12,500. Who among us wouldn’t want to own this one? But at what price?

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The $2,000 Bin (and Up); Rediscovering Some Confessions of a Jazz Vinyl Addict

Byrd copyTime to catch up on some of the jazz vinyl auctions we’ve been watching from eBay, starting with this whopper: Donald Byrd, Byrd Blows on Beacon Hill, Transition 17. This was an original pressing with the booklet. Everything seemed to be in M- condition. The final price was $3,839.10. Definitely a new high for this record for the Jazz Collector Price Guide, although I was surprised to see that this record has sold for more than  $2,600 in the past.

This one is destined for the $2,000 bin and perhaps even joining the Byrd record in the $3,000 bin: Sonny Clark, Cool Struttin’, Blue Note 1588. this is an original West 63rd Street pressing listed in VG++ condition for

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