Hello Music Lovers, Audiophiles and Fun Fact Friends...I am back with More of the Most Expensive Vinyl Records Ever Sold! Due to the popularity of my last Record Setting Vinyl Video, and in fact, many of your comments, it time for an update. Plus, several new records have been set…as vinyl is hot.
Anyway, for those of you that don't know me, I am Josh Levine, host of Last Week at the Auction & Josh Levine Speaks. And I want to issue this disclaimer...I may be missing a few genres out there, so don’t jump me on the comments, I’ll have more videos coming. I have had several of you reach out to tell me, I am missing out on some Northern Soul, Jazz, classical and more in the last post and video. I hope to hit a few of those for you today. Let me know what you think. And I know there are other auction records or records sale prices out there. I try to avoid the “signed” records as this isn’t an autograph post. But feel free to share your thoughts, finds and scores with me. You've all be so great. I love the passion music evokes.
With today's post I am trying to update you on some new records that have recently been set, a few you all told me I missed and broaden my scope a bit for you serious folks. And the reason I do this and all my video shows is for you. You might just stumble across some of these at a local auction, yard sale, flea market, storage lockers. Etc. And you will be all the wiser. I often say records are the scratch off lottery tickets of the resale world.
So let’s get to it.... here is what I like to call More of the Most Expensive Vinyl Records & LPs Ever Sold…
How about some Zeppelin…Led Zeppelin that is and their first release in 1969. The debut record and original UK pressing, which features the band’s name in turquoise lettering, that is the tell, just sold for $3,918.82 on Dec 13th…. The later pressings have orange letters.
A fun fact about this release was it was kind of panned at the time by Rolling Stone. They called Robert Plant, and I quote “as foppish as Rod Stewart, but nowhere near so exciting.” I had to look up Foppish…
Foppish: concerned with one's clothes and appearance in an affected and excessive way...
Regardless…it was a huge commercial success, and Rolling Stone later ranked it as the 29th greatest album of all time.
And now one for the Jazz Cats…
How about Miles Davis and the record, Kind of Blue released in 1959
Most likely the coolest record on my list today. Some Kind of Blue features not only Davis but John Coltrane, Bill Evans, Paul Chambers, Jimmy Cobb and the list goes on and on... Most critics consider it to be his best….and it also happens to be the best-selling jazz album of all time.
Finding an original pressing can almost guarantee a few bucks. One just sold at Auction for $3250 in November. Nice….
Now we get a little grungy…
Nirvana’s Bleach from 1989 is not the household name that Nevermind is…That’s one of course is by far their most popular, however Bleach is their debut record. It’s on the famed indie label Sub Pop and it is the one worth the big bucks. The original pressing of which there were 1000 or so, has sold consistently for $1500 plus online.
And one just sold on eBay for $2,000 in October. Keep your eyes peeled, they are around.
But now for you dancing queens….There’s a rare promo copy of this next one.
It’s ABBAs Hova’s Vittne from 1981. I am sure I would butcher that pronunciation. The single, was only distributed to those within the record company. Only 200 copies were ever pressed and on red vinyl. Being one of the most commercially successful musical group of all time means there are a lot of fans and a lot of demand for their rarities and collectibles….one of these just brought $4347.83 in August.
Next is The Quarrymen and a rare single released in 1981.
Superfans of The Beatles know the original name, the “Quarrymen” and yes, that’s pre Ringo. And the Fab 3 plus 1 recorded The songs “That’ll Be the Day” (a Buddy Holly cover) and “In Spite of All the Danger” (an original) in 1958, but it’s the rare single reprinted by Paul McCartney himself in 1981 that is worth the big money. It’s said that McCartney only had 50 copies produced for friends and family. If you find one of these, it could be worth more than $5000. In fact, one brought $6,097.56 in Sept of 2019.
Okay horror movie freaks will know this one…or at least have heard this bands music.
Next on my list is Cherry Five by Cherry Five released in 1975. Just after releasing this record, the name of the band changed its name to Goblin. These guys did the soundtracks for Suspiria, Dawn of the Dead, and Deep Red. Horror Classics.
Just know that The Cherry Five release is considered extremely rare so be on the lookout. One just sold in June for $4,268.29
Next, how about a rare version of a Beatles Classic. Abbey Road released in 1969 can be found in a rare UK export on the yellow and black Parlophone Records label with the catalog number is PPCS 7088.
It’s the one to be on the look out for. This, their 11th studio album and like the Zepplin debut also received mixed reviews, but is now 14th on Rolling Stones list of the “500 Greatest Records of All Time.”
I just saw one bring $6421 US !
Now we get a little trippy….This one is out there….The Thirteenth Floor Elevators — Reverbaration (Doubt) released in 1966 could be a great find should you stumble across one pickin’
THE THIRTEENTH FLOOR ELEVATORS
This early recording of (4) Thirteenth Floor Elevators songs could score you well over $1000. The record features the songs “Reverbaration (Doubt),” “You’re Gonna Miss Me,” “Fire Engine,” and “Tried to Hide.” The Thirteenth Floor Elevators are credited with inventing the psychedelic rock genre. Sadly, their legendary guitarist Roky Erickson suffered from paranoid schizophrenia, which greatly influenced his life and career. It’s most likely why the band’s run was short lived. They only recorded four studio albums.
A copy sold for $1,219.51 in October of 2017 just to give you an idea.
Did you think classical music would be left off of this list? I am trying to broaden my horizons people.
JOHANN STRAUSS JR
Next is Century Symphony Orchestra, Waltzes by Johann Strauss, Jr. released in 1956 and this one has an interesting history. There was a time when Record companies would seek out relatively unknown artists to provide cover art for their classical and jazz releases and this album art was by a little-known, Andy Warhol.
But for whatever, there are only seven known copies in existence, and one is on display at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh. However, another did turn up and sold for $5,500 in 2012. It is unlikely you have one of the other five, but you never know. With what records are bringing today you might just crush that last record.
But hey, let’s keep zig zagging all over the place with this next one. How about the Sex Pistols and their “God Save the Queen” released in 1977…Originally, 25,000 copies of this single were pressed, but it has been estimated that only 10 survived after A&M ordered them all destroyed just six days after signing the band. Apparently, A&M decided to cut bait with boys after the band mates repeatedly behaved so badly….or like a bunch of Punks !
Johnny Rotten reportedly had repeatedly threatened and terrorized the company executives, Sid Vicious demolished the label’s headquarters bathroom and in less that one week of being signed, A&M dropped them.
A few people were smart enough to help themselves to a few copies prior to their destruction. — copies with the A&M label have sold for over $8,000. Wow…
OLIVIA NEWTON JOHN & ELO
The next one is fun….it’s related to Olivia Newton-John and ELO’s 1980 Xanadu…
The movie Xanadu has been called one of the worst films ever made, but a rare promotional picture disc that featured the theme song is one of the most sought-after records of all time. Legend has it, Olivia Newton-John just couldn’t stand the way she looked on the disc and had the company stop it’s pressing. It’s believed that 20 to 30 records survived. One of these turned up at auction in 2017 and brought $4000.
So what is next…. More for the Jazz Fans….it’s Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568 released in 1957
It’s believed there were up to 1,000 copies of this record printed and each are quite valuable. One sold in 2015 for $11,162 but I hear there is a super rare variant that might make finding the right one even more valuable. There is a story that the label, Blue Note, ran out of labels when printing the record and that last few in the run have an error relating to the printing of the label’s physical address. To the hardcore collectors out there, the theory is this odd version should be worth even more when one turns up. Either way, $10,000 plus is a score.
But let’s keep moving on….An original pressing of this rare 78 could make your day, but you might have to make a deal with the Devil to find one….
Robert Johnson’s Me and the Devil Blues released in 1938 is stuff of many an urban legend. It’s said that Johnson met the devil at the crossroads in Mississippi where he traded his soul for the ability to master the guitar.
Whether fact or fiction, the man had a profound influence on the genre and guitarists everywhere.
Heritage Auctions recently sold a copy for $8,125.
But here we are at my last one for this installment…it’s Prince and his 1987 Black Album.
After recording and pressing a half-a-million copies of The Black Album, Prince decided to stop the release and in fact paid the label to recall all the records. The reason?
The singer believed that his record was “evil.”
The only problem was a few promotional copies had already made it to circulation. The record was also widely bootlegged and got considerable radio play, despite Prince’s protest. He later changed his mind about the recording but only released it as a CD version in 1994.
An original, factory sealed American version sold in 2018 for $42,300. An unsealed Canadian version sold for $27,500 so no matter how you find one…you might just be able to afford a little red corvette.
Well, that’s it for today. And as you probably know there so many more record selling records out there, but you’ll have to wait. I really hope you enjoy these posts and if you are finding them helpful and mildly entertaining please like, subscribe and place your comments below. And feel free to share some of your strange facts and any other subjects you'd like me to tackle....
Until next time my friends…
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