Mitch asked me to post this:
Regular RRers will know that I collect and sometimes sell old, collectible vinyl.
Apart from obtaining some very interesting stuff, it can sometimes be profitable. However, there are pitfalls!. Charity shops used to be a good source, but nowadays, most carry the same (uncollectible) artists – The Bachelors, Harry Seccombe, Shirley Bassey, Jim Reeves and Russ Conway. Anything good that they get, generally has an artificially high price put on it by well meaning folk who are obviously trying to do the best for their charity. Unless you especially want a particular record for your own collection, you will rarely find a bargain these days.
Condition is everything. The better condition – the higher the price. There are some really rare things that will be sought after even if they are badly marked and scratched.
Gradings are as follows: Mint – Unplayed. Excellent – Almost unplayed. Still looks like new with no marks, writing or splits on the cover. Very Good – Shows signs of having been played, but no deterioration in sound even if there are finger marks and surface scratches. Good – Played a lot and looking a bit worn but still plays without jumps. Fair – Played so much the sound quality has deteriorated. May even stick or jump. Poor – Sticks, jumps and crackles. Usually very finger-marked. Often only bought as a collection-filler.
The market was very buoyant in the early 90s, but with the advent of eBay, many of the shops which used to buy in good stuff have had to close down and most punters on eBay are looking to buy cheap.
Saying that, though, there are still records that will fetch high prices:
45s – “Liza Jane” (Vocalion) – Davy Jones. This was David Bowie’s first release and a poor condition copy sold at auction for £1000
“Ruby Pearl” (Brunswick) – Jackie Lee Cochran. Nothing to do with Eddie, this record is the Holy Grail for R & R collectors. It has fetched up to £5000!
“Boogie Woogie Country Girl” (London) – Joe Turner. Up until 1959, Atlantic didn’t have a regular outlet in the UK and only a few of their tracks made it over here for release (none of the early, Clyde McPhatter Drifters tracks, for e.g.). That makes a lot of them quite rare and the 45 sells for around £750. It was also released on 78, which goes for about £60.
Albums – The original US stereo release of “Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan” (CBS) which had different tracks from subsequent pressings (and also different to the copy released in the UK) has sold for about £12000.
“Please Please Me” (Parlophone) The Beatles. Must be the 1st pressing (there are ways to tell). The mono version goes for about £600 and stereo, which was issued a bit later and in limited numbers (not many people had stereo then) will, in good nick, get about £1800.
“Rolling Stones” (Decca) – The Rolling Stones. Their first album, 1st pressing get about £650.
There are loads of others and if anyone wants to know about anything they’ve got, please feel free to either post here, or email me direct at firstname.lastname@example.org