Bud, Ella, Bird, Jackie: A Day on eBay

Bud Powell Jazz Vinyl copyI’ve been off eBay for a few days recovering from my Bronx adventure, so today I will go back to my watch list and take inventory of what I have missed, starting with The Amazing Bud Powell Volume 2, Blue Note 5041. This was an original 10-inch pressing listed in near mint condition for the record and probably M- or VG++++ for the cover. It had a start price of $595 and did not get any bids. On the one hand I’m surprised because you just don’t find many 10-inch Blue Notes in this kind of condition. And this is a great record, with a great cover. On the other hand, $600 is still a lot of money.

Everybody’s favorite, bobdjukic, was back with some auctions and, as usual, some hyperbole. This was a highlight from Ella Fitzgerald, and I will give the full title because it is quite a weird mouthful: Miss Ella Fitzgerald and Mr. Gordon Jenkins (with His Orchestra and Chorus) Invite You to Listen and Relax, Decca 8696. According to the listing this is “Easily and By Far Ella Fitzgerald’s Rarest Studio Album in Existence!” I love that stuff, and then it gets topped off with the old standby “ultra-rare.” Somehow this stuff actually works. The record and cover were graded VG++, although the description makes it clear that VG++ for the cover is a wild stretch, since there is actually a partial seam split. Anyway, some how, some way, someone bid $259 for this record. I think I got my copy, in better condition, for $5 at a record show, which was not far from the going rate a few years back.  Read more

Another Adventure in Jazz Collecting: A Bronx Tale, Part Two

Dexter GordonSo, 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.

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Another Adventure in Jazz Collecting: A Bronx Tale, Part One

OK, I have another story. This one starts, as usual, with an e-mail. The first e-mail came back in April 2015. I replied, but nothing ever came of it. Then, just a few weeks ago, there was another e-mail from the same person, totally of the blue. This was the text, verbatim:

“Top jazz artist’s

Cotrane , gerald wilson ,st you’d, ray brown, jimmy smith, felonious monk, Eddie Harris , carmen macrae, jazz laboratorylaboratory, gene Simmons, Dexter gordon , stan gets ext.

Give me good price I’ll sell.

‘Miles Davis,chico hamilton about 80 or more.”

I wrote back, asking for more detail and perhaps some pictures. The first photo came back and it didn’t show much at all. No valuable Coltrane, Stan Gets, or Felonious Monk in the picture. Instead there were a lot of records by Gloria Lynne. I wrote back asking for more details and pictures of the Coltrane or Dexter Gordon or Miles Davis. A few more pictures came back. This was the first one:

Jackie and Miles copy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Obviously, my correspondent had done a little homework between the first few emails and this one. So, of course it is Jackie McLean, The New Tradition on Ad Lib, and yes my interest was piqued. Who would have thought, one of the rarest of the rare jazz LPs among a collection previously highlighted by titles such as Gloria Lynne Intimate Moments and Miss Lorraine Ellison Heart And Soul?

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All I Want for Christmas

Redd copyActually, I don’t even celebrate Christmas, but that’s quite beside the point, isn’t it? I spent a couple of hours today just looking at my records and going through the shelves, one by one. It’s a pretty damn good collection, I must say. Although it is not complete. Not even close. So, when I do look at the collection, what’s missing. Or, more to the point, if I were to make a Christmas Wish List, what would I put on it? Here we go, all original pressings, of course.

1. Freddie Redd, Shades of Redd, Blue Note 4045. Yes, I’ve been searching for this record for years, and yes, I could just pay the price and buy a copy on eBay. But that takes out all of the fun. Now, if The Lovely Mrs. JC would be interested in a gift for my upcoming birthday, I wouldn’t complain about that at all, no matter what the price.

2. Lou Donaldson, Quartet, Quintet, Sextet, Blue Note 1537. No the list will not be all Blue Notes, but it could be if I wanted to go there. This happens to be another favorite. I’ve owned a Japanese pressing for years. Two, in fact. But an original on my shelf would be quite appealing.

3. Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568. No I don’t have it. If I did, whenever someone would ask me what’s the most valuable record in your collection, I could point to that. Right now, when someone asks, I don’t know exactly what to say. The music is pretty good too, no?

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A Few From the Jazz Record Center

Gigi copyOur friends at the Jazz Record Center had an auction close yesterday and here are some of the items of interest, starting with Gigi Gryce, The Hap’nin’s, New Jazz 8246. This was an original pressing with the purple labels and deep grooves. The record looked to be in M- condition and the cover was probably around VG+. The final price was $338.

Sonny Clark, Leapin’ and Lopin’, Blue Note 4091. This one does not look to be a first pressing, since they don’t call it a first pressing and don’t mention the ear. It looks to be really clean in M- condition for the record and the cover. And it is a mono pressing. The price was $212.50.

Speaking of Sonny Clark, there was also:

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Monk, Blue Notes, Warhol: Another Day on eBay

Monk Jazz Vinyl copyWe’re going to ask our European readers about this one: Thelonious Monk, Piano Solo, Swing 33.342. This is a 10-inch LP that I think is an original French pressing. I’m not sure if it’s a re-issue of Blue Note tracks. I’m not sure of much about it at all, in fact. When I did a Google search, the previous mentions that came up were from postings here at Jazz Collector, showing that the record has sold for more than $500 in the past. This one is listed at M- condition for the record and Ex+ for the cover and is now in the $150 price range with just a few hours left in the auction. Anyone doing a search for this record may be stymied because the seller didn’t realize that the label is “Swing” and not “Wing.” Any background on this rare record would be most appreciated. Awesome cover, by the way.

Meanwhile there are always Blue Notes and more Blue Notes:

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Modern Art Treated Like Modern Art

Art Pepper Jazz Vinyl copyHere’s an interesting one: Art Pepper, Modern Art, Intro 606. This looks to be an original pressing. The seller says it is in VG+ condition, but he also mentions that it has “many light scratches and marks.” What’s interesting is that the seller states the cover has been “restored” by a company called Fourth Cone Restoration in Los Angeles. This is the first time I’ve ever encountered a jazz record that had been professionally restored, as if it were a rare painting. Given the value of some of these records, it’s really not a bad idea, is it? I’d love to somehow see the before and after, but, alas, I can’t see me bidding on this record, even though I don’t own an original pressing. The “many light scratches and marks” has danger written all over it. The start price for this record is in the $500 range and so far there are no bidders. One other point: The seller calls this a 1951 pressing. Is that possibly true? I didn’t think they were making 12-inch vinyl in 1951, except for that one Bird promotional record on Dial.

While we’re on the subject . . . . Read more

A Wailin’ Session (And More)

Art Taylor copyI was piling a bunch of very nice records into my Watch List folder and noticed that many were from the same seller, including Art Taylor, Taylor’s Wailers, Prestige 7117. This is an original New York yellow label pressing that looks to be in at least VG++ condition for both the record and the cover, and perhaps even better. The auction closes in three days and the bidding is close to $500. Interesting coincidence: Just a couple of days before noticing this listing I put this record on the turntable and gave it a close listen. I don’t think I’d ever listened to it and I was expecting one of those Prestige jam sessions. It’s not. It’s a well arranged, carefully conceived album with tremendous playing all around. The main group has Donald Byrd, Charlie Rouse, Jackie McLean, Ray Bryant and Wendell Marshall, in addition to AT. I have no idea why Prestige threw in another track by a separate group with John Coltrane, Red Garland and Paul Chambers, but of course it’s wonderful that they did. Coltrane is in nice form, but it’s the rest of the album that is also quite impressive. I highly recommend giving it a listen for those of you lucky enough to own a copy.

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Jazz Vinyl For The New Year

wes copyWhen last I left you, these were some of the jazz records I was watching on eBay:

Wes Montgomery, Full House, Riverside 434. This was a mono pressing with the white labels, which I assume is a promo pressing. There don’t seem to be deep grooves, but I’m not sure if that has anything to do with whether this is a first pressing. The record was in VG++ condition and the cover was VG+, with some wear on the cover. It sold for $310.

Curtis Fuller, Bone and Bari, Blue Note 1572. This was an original West 63rd Street pressing with the deep grooves. It was listed in M- condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. The bidding reached $855, but it did not surpass the reserve price set by our friend Serge.

These two also did not sell, but they have since been re-listed at the same price, and are still not getting any action:

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Once Again, The Familiar Allure of Rare Jazz Vinyl

Cliff Jordan Jazz VinylNo I know I am truly back from vacation. Got up early this morning and went right to eBay to look for rare jazz records. Here are a few that I found, starting with: Cliff Jordan, Cliff Craft, Blue Note 1582. This is an original West 63rd Street pressing with the deep grooves, ear, etc. The record is listed in VG++ condition and the cover is VG+. I still don’t have an original pressing of this LP. This one is now in the $300 range with more than four days to go. It will surely sell for a price outside of my comfort zone, so I’ll keep looking.

Hank Mobley, Hank Mobley Sextet, Blue Note 1560. This is also an original deep-groove West 63rd Street pressing. The record is listed in VG++ condition and the cover is VG+. This one closes today and the price is in the $500 range.

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