Regular contributor Daryl Parks posed an interesting question about auctions versus buy-it-now listings on eBay. From the beginning here at Jazz Collector we have focused on auctions. Not sure why, but that was how I always did business on eBay, when I did do business on eBay, both as a buyer and as a seller. Daryl was helping a friend with some listings of jazz records, and the friend preferred buy-it-now, particularly for what he described as “big ticket” items, in this case original Blue Note pressings from Curtis Fuller and Jutta Hipp. His explanation, as explained by Daryl: “Buy-it-now attracts different types of buyers who prefer to avoid roller-coasters and unpredictability while resulting in predictable outcomes for the seller; he has always had great success with this approach.” Read more
Sorry, again, for the paucity of posts and thanks, again, to Clifford for pitching in. There’s a lot to catch up on so let’s begin, starting with Sonny Rollins, Saxophone Colossus, Prestige 7079. I think we may be seen a new paradigm taking shape in our Jazz Collector world. This copy was in extremely nice condition, graded M- for both the cover and the vinyl. It sold for $1,002.99, which some might think would be a bargain price for an original of Saxophone Colossus, and, of course, that would be accurate. But this was not an original pressing, but instead was a yellow label New Jersey pressing. I think we’re starting to see the rise of the second — and later — pressings because the originals are so expensive and so hard to come by, particularly in near mint condition. Makes me regret that I sold so many of my Liberty Blue Notes for $20 or so when I was selling regularly on eBay in the first part of the 2000s. Then again, the reason I was able to sell those Liberties was because I had acquired original pressings and no longer needed them, so nothing really to complain too strenuously about.
Many of you have probably noticed that the seller manusardi1 has some nice items on eBay now, including Jutta Hipp at the Hickory House, Volume One, Blue Note 1515. This is an original pressing. The record is labeled “pristine” and the cover looks to be VG++ or so. The bidding is in the $900 range and there are still three days to go. For those looking to spend big bucks filling in big gap in their Blue Note collections, there is also the companion Jutta Hipp at the Hickory House, Volume Two, Blue Note 1516. This one is also listed in “pristine” condition for the record, with a similar condition on the cover, perhaps VG++, perhaps a little less. This one is in the $800 range with three days left.
I know I haven’t posted in a while when I start getting little love notes from our old pal CeeDee, with gentle reminders such as “you may have seen these by now, but . . . ” Anyway, these a couple of the ones being called to my attention, starting with Kenny Dorham, Quiet Kenny, New Jazz 8225. This was an original pressing with the purple label and the deep grooves. The record was graded VG++ and the cover was VG+. The final price was $1,752.
Then there was Joe Henderson, Inner Urge, Blue Note 84189. This was an original stereo pressing with the New York USA labels and the ears in the dead wax. The record was listed in M- condition and the cover was VG++. The final price was $383. High for a stereo pressing, but certainly not surprising, right?
I didn’t have either of those on my watch list, but I did have this one, which fetched quite a fetching price:
Now that I have no election to obsess over, and I don’t yet have the appetite to read about what will happen next to my wonderful country, I have more time to listen to records, read about jazz and look at the always interesting activity on eBay. So, perhaps, I will do more Jazz Collector posts and finally set aside time to put into the Jazz Collector Price Guide, which can really use an update. Look for the silver lining, as the wonderful song says.
Anyway, here are a few of items that recently sold on eBay, starting with Jutta Hipp with Zoot Sims, Blue Note 1530. This was an original Lexington Avenue pressing listed in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover, with some visible staining on the back cover that could be a turn off for some buyers, but obviously was not that big a turn off for the buyer of this copy, who paid $2,850.88. In fact, looking over the cover pictures again, it looks like VG+ is a pretty generous grade. I have an absolutely clean version of this record that I purchased from the Bruce M. West collection in Baltimore, thoughts of which always put a smile on my face.
Here zre are some of the rare jazz records that have been sitting in our eBay watch list, starting with Eric Dolphy, Outward Bound, New Jazz 8236. This was an original pressing with the purple label and the deep grooves. The record was listed in M- condition and the cover was Ex, equivalent to VG++, according to the seller’s description. The final price was $837. High, but certainly not surprising for an original classic such as this. From the same seller, there was Kenny Dorham, Quiet Kenny, New Jazz 8225. This was also an original pressing with the purple label and the deep grooves. The record was listed in VG+ condition, as was the cover. The final price was $1,083. And one more from the same seller, this one a tease for me, but not in a comfortable price range, although certainly a fair price range based on the final bid:
Here’s one you don’t see too often on eBay: Booker Little and Friend, Bethlehem 6061. I guess in this case the friend was Booker’s trumpet. The record and the cover are both in VG+ condition and the start price is $350. Thus far there are no bidders with about a day and a half left on the auction as of this writing. We’ve seen this record sell for more than $700 a few times in better condition than this, so the seller might have expectations of the record selling for this price.
Here’s another seller that is optimistic with a start price of more than $1,400 for this record: Elmo Hope, Meditations, Prestige 7010. This is an original New York yellow label pressing listed in EX+ condition for the record and Ex/Ex+ for the cover. I’m like Bill W. on the previous post. I’m never sure what Ex or Ex+ means, although I’m assuming for this record the condition is either M- or pretty darn close to it.
Catching up on a few items still lingering on the Jazz Collector watch list, starting with Jackie McLean, The New Tradition, Ad Lib 6601. This was an original pressing that was listed in VG- or worse condition for the record and VG- for the cover. Despite the condition it sold for $711.80. I have a bit of a hard time relating to a collector who would pay more than $700 for a record that (1) may not even be playable and (2) has a damaged cover that may not even look so good on your shelves. You may recall that I briefly owned a copy of the Jackie record a couple of months ago. That one was in VG condition for the record and VG- for the cover. I wasn’t happy with it and, in the context of the overall package of records, I would have paid less than $711 for it. So maybe the woman who reneged on the deal will do better selling it in that condition to another collector willing to simply own a copy of a really rare record without worrying to much about listening to it. That ain’t me.
TWO WEEKS!!!! The longest I’ve ever gone without posting. Weren’t any of you, aside from Mac, worried about me? I didn’t go anywhere, just took an unexpected and unscheduled break. Now I’m back, but only for a few weeks. I have a two-week vacation coming up in October. Anyone interested in doing some guest hosting for a couple of weeks? Send me an email and we’ll see what we can do.
In the meantime, let’s get back to eBay and see what’s going on. This was on my watch list the last time I looked and now it has sold: Sonny Clark, Cool Struttin’, Blue Note 1588. This was an original pressing with the west 63rd Street address, deep grooves, etc. The record was in VG+ condition and the cover was only VG, but it still sold for $2,081. There was also this one for the $1,000 bin:
Kenny Dorham, Afro-Cuban, Blue Note 5065. This was an original Lexington Avenue 10-inch pressing listed as Ex condition for both the record and the cover. The seller hyped up the condition, suggesting that the record was only played once or twice. It sold for $1,684.
Roland Kirk, Triple Threat, King 539. This was an original pressing that was probably in VG++ condition for the record and VG+ for the cover. It had been listed previously at about $2,000, didn’t sell and was listed again. This time it sold for $1,259.56.
Well, while we’ re filling the $1,000 bin, let’s add a few more: Sonny Clark, Cool Struttin’, Blue Note 1588. This was an original pressing listed in Ex condition for both the record and the cover. There were 17 bidders and 79 bids, which is a pretty high amount. The record sold for $2,604.54.
This came from the same seller: