Category Archives: Vinyl

Vinyl – Thirft Store Digging

Part of being a record collector (especially an obsessed devoted one) involves spending a lot of time and energy finding new music to own. Walking into a finely curated record store is fine if I’m comfortable spending at least $10 for a single LP,  but in most cases, I don’t particularly like spending a lot of money – even on records. There’s nothing wrong with spending time and money in a record store necessarily, but I’m not going to feel good spending money there as opposed to finding music I want at a thrift store or at a garage sale for tens of dollars cheaper. That’s part of what makes hunting and digging so fun – the bargains and the possibility of flipping a cheap record for modest profit.

I figured out overtime that Goodwill is a decent source for bargain hunting vinyl. Not all Goodwills will carry used vinyl, but the ones that do will eventually sell some really great stuff. I say eventually because about 98% of the stuff that hits the floors at Goodwill is complete garbage and it can be weeks before anything good is found. I see the same categories of vinyl all universally all thrift stores: Barbara Streisand, Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass, Tom Jones, Johnny Mathis, classical music, Neil Diamond, Christmas albums, Children’s albums, 12” hip hop singles, big band jazz, and Spanish mariachi music. Oh, and of course everything in terrible shape.

About 20% of the vinyl I come across is in non-playable condition. I mean, there’s G+ condition, which I can tolerate if it’s a rare find, and then there are albums in P condition with scratches so thick you would think the LP was intentionally rubbed with a cheese grater.

Some collectors tend to score at thrift stores. While selling at the KUSF Rock n’ Swap last year I struck up a conversation with the seller at the booth next to me. He was a veteran seller of over 20 years who told me he once found an LP at a Salvation Army by a group called Search Party. Search Party were a psychedelic Christian rock group from the late 1960s. He told me he was going through about 100 Christian / devotional LPs at a Salvation Army when he stumbled across it. He bought the LP for $2 and promptly sold it on eBay for $1600.

PRAISE THE LORD
PRAISE THE LORD

Sometimes I’ll find an LP without its jacket just floating in a crate or on a shelf. Most of the time I don’t tend to bring these kind of LPs home, although admittingly I have done it once or twice. I’ll explain later.

Then there’s the culture of people who I’ve come to see routinely digging for vinyl.  With few exceptions, most of the people digging for vinyl have little to no social skills. They’re mostly middle aged men still looking for their one holy grail (after God knows how many years of digging for it) and they don’t come to Goodwill to socialize. Their personalities and mannerisms remind me of Gollum from Lord of the Rings.

Typical Thrift Vinyl Collector

To be honest, most things I come across at Goodwill or at thrift stores I end up selling. It makes more sense to spend $10 on vinyl I know I can sell for profit than to keep my finds. For example, below is a short list of things I’ve found at various thrift stores and then sold online. I paid about $9 for the ten items below, and made a net profit of $154.66:

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Various Artists – Capcom vs. Marvel 2 Mix Tape.   Bought for $1 – Sold for $45

The Capcom vs. Marvel 2 Mix Tape LP shown above I technically got for free. When I got home I found this LP crammed in the sleeve of an entirely unrelated album.

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Beatles – Abbey Road.   Bought for $1 – Sold for $16.50

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Beatles – Beatles ’65.   Bought for $1 – Sold for $10.50

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The New Romans 7”.   Bought for $1 – Sold for $26

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Bobby Vee – Suzie Baby (promo 7”).  Bought for $0.50 – Sold for $5

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The Cure – Standing On A Beach: The Singles.   Bought at a garage sale for $1 – Sold for $26

Maria Callas ebay

Maria Callas picture disc.   Bought for $0.50 – Sold for $12.50

ebay 7

Marj Snyder – A Time of Peace.   Bought for $1 – Sold for $7.16

ebay 5

Blind Spot – Blind Spot 7″.   Bought for $1 – Sold for $5

Not everything I purchase from thrift stores turns out to be a good investment…

ebay 10

Randy and the Rainbows 7”.   Bought for $1 – Sold for $1

With the money I made from these sales, I felt perfectly comfortable buying a copy of this very rare triple LP Pink Floyd bootleg set known as Cruel But Fair.

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When the LP covers are put in the proper sequence, they make the image of this spooky looking owl!

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The real icing on the cake of this rare triple LP set is the color of each vinyl.

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I paid about $159 for my copy, with $24 for international shipping from Spain. So basically, I bought a very rare, very expensive triple LP bootleg with funds I earned from selling dollar bin records purchased from Thrift stores. All I had to pay out-of-pocket was the international shipping and a few extra bucks to cover the remaining cost. And if that isn’t enough, this triple LP set is now out of print and stupidly expensive to buy. On Discogs it’s currently for sale at the low bargain price of $525.

Cruel and Unfair
Cruel and Unfair

The things I keep from Goodwill are typically either rare, or are a very legitimate bargain and are worth keeping. For example, I was digging a few months ago and came across an LP floating around in a bin without a jacket. The labels were vanilla colored and simply read “SIDE ONE” and “SIDE TWO” on each side.

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This, I knew, was more than likely a bootleg. I picked it up and read the deadwax which read TAKRL 1968. This was a copy of The Amazing Kornyphone Record Label’s live King Crimson album entitled Heretic.

King Crimson - Heretic
King Crimson – Heretic

According to Discogs, this albums sells between $20 to $65. I bought my copy (albeit the jacket is missing) for $1.

Additionally, I’ve come across some other decent finds at various thrift stores.

Jay-Z – VOL. 2… Hard Knock Life

KLF – Burn The Bastards 12″

Carol King – Tapestry

The very best of Chuck Berry

Various Wes Montgomery albums

and a handful of Bob Dylan Albums.

Like I said, most vinyl records sold at thrift stores are either in garbage condition or feature music NOBODY wants. But if you are patient enough and know what it is you’re looking at, it can become a rewarding experience.

Vinyl – June 2014

I acquired way too many records in June. And not on purpose either…

A few weeks ago while helping out a family member with their garage sale, I was gifted three records from their home. As I was looking at the gifted albums a customer of the garage sale approaches me.

“Hey man, you a record collector?”

“Sort of. I have my selective tastes but I’m into a lot of genres.”

“I got two or three boxes of records at my place if you want to go digging through them. You might find something worth while.”

My girlfriend and I wrap up the day a few hours later and head over to the man’s home.  He greets us outside his home as he tunes up his car in the driveway.  He leads us to his backyard and drops one box at a time on his patio table.

“Feel free to take your time and when you’re done let me know if you see anything that interests you.”

The gentleman was very nice. Considering we had just met him only a few hours earlier, and only for about 3 minutes, he was already  offering us water and chairs to sit in so that we’d be comfortable. My girlfriend and I began to dig though his two boxes.  Most of it was music I actually liked – The Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, etc. The rest included artists like The Beatles, Van Morrison, Pat Benatar, Allman Brothers, Doobie Brothers, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Credence Clearwater Revival, Big Brother and Holding Company, Bad Company among others.

Unfortunately, most of the records were in VG condition. Some were even warped, like Highway 61 Revisited by Bob Dylan, or Revolver by the Beatles. I put aside three piles while digging through the boxes.

Pile 1: Not interested

Piles 2: Possibly worth keeping

Pile 3: Definitely worth keeping

After spending about 40 minutes going through 100 or so records, we had reached a definitive number of we wanted. 14 Records grand total.

“How much do you think is a fair price for all those?”, he asks.
I was hesitating to throw a figure out. I’m terrible at pricing records and we were looking for a deal. I said $45 seemed fair for the 14 albums.  The albums themselves weren’t necessarily rare, or even in good condition, which is why $45 seemed appropriate. My selections included most of the Grateful Dead he had, some Lynyrd Skynyrd, Cheap Thrills by Big Brother and Holding Company, Abby Road by The Beatles, and a few other albums. Most of the albums I wanted were worth probably no more than $1.

“Huh. That’s it, just those 14?”

“Yeah.”

He hesitated and flipped through the records we wanted. He takes the records and stacks them up, slams them on the box of other records, and says, “Tell ya what, make it $50 and you can take everything.”

We didn’t decline. We took everything for $50 and were thrilled about our deal. In retrospect, I think I would’ve had the bad end of the deal to ask for $45 for our 14 albums. Most of the albums were not in the best shape.

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We brought them home and I went through them like it was Christmas Morning. It took me several days to determine the value of over 100 albums from the boxes. Most were worth donating to Goodwill since they were so beat up. I was surprised to discover that a handful of albums were worth more than I had expected.

Below are the four most valuable albums we came across from the two boxes thus far…:

Toe Fat – Toe Fat

WHO????
WHO????

I had no idea who this progressive rock group from the UK were. Apparently, they were Uriah Heep’s first band before becoming Uriah Heep. Average price for a copy is between $30 to $45. I hate to admit, the copy we found in the box is pretty beat up. Probably worth closer to $20. Copies have previously sold close to $100.

Chris Isaak – Heart Shaped World

Chris Isaak - Moody Sink and Pensive Thoughts (LP)
Chris Isaak – Moody Sink and Pensive Expressions (LP)

This album was only released on vinyl once and has been out of print for about 25 years. Most copies of this album sell between $30 to $50. The highest sold was about $135. Too bad our copy is in VG condition. Probably worth $25 or so if I had to guess. Not that we plan on selling this one…

Grateful Dead – Grateful Dead

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At first glance, I thought my copy was a NM first pressing, but after looking into it a bit more, I was disappointed to find out the copy from the boxes is actually a second pressing. Even so, second pressings in NM condition typically sell anywhere from $35 – $75.

Tom Petty and the Heart Breakers – S/T

Tom Petty and the Heart Breakers - Duck Face (LP)
Tom Petty and the Heart Breakers – Duck Face (LP)

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ first self-titled album was produced many times on several labels – including Shelter Records, MCA Records, and Island Records, Warner Brothers Records, and ABC Records. Our specific release of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers was from ABC Records and included a picture collage insert of Tom Petty. This version was apparently a “limited edition” release and also had a different label from all other releases. In near mint (which is what we have), and with the photo insert, it’s valued between $50 to $80.

And then there was the least valuable album that came from the boxes…

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In VG+ / VG shape, this copy of Jesse Colin Young’s album Song For Juli is currently being sold on Discogs for $0.02. Ironically, international shipping from the UK to the US for this album will cost you $15.

The one oddball from the boxes worth mentioning is a copy of Bad Company’s self-titled debut album.

Bad Co - Enron (LP)
Bad Company – Enron (LP)

What makes this album different? Side B for this album does not include a single piece of text on the label.

About 70% of the records in the boxes were not worth keeping. Either they were too beat up and scratched, or they featured music we didn’t enjoy. We’re still deciding on whether or not to sell the records in bulk to a record store, or to attempt liquidating them via eBay. Or, to just donate them to Goodwill.

Past that, I bought only one other album in June.

John Williams – Jurassic Park: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

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I loved this movie growing up. The music for the film is good, but it’s not something I would necessarily listen to on a regular basis. Unless of course it looked like this:

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Mondo, the record label who published this album, released two variations and three versions of this record. The version I purchased was known as Variation A. Variation A came in the sleeve shown above and was randomly inserted with either black vinyl (version one, 3000 copies produced), or “Dilophosaurus splatter” vinyl (version two, 2000 copies produced – the version I own). The Dilophosaurus splatter design of the vinyl should be an obvious connection for any fan of the film.

Above:

Variation B  featured a different sleeve design and the vinyl was produced with transparent golden wax, with a mosquito label in the center.

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Limited to 1000 copies, and sold out within 20 minutes. By the time I tried ordering a copy after being stuck in traffic on my way to work, they were all extinct. The amber vinyl with its mosquito label should be another easy connection in reference to the film…

mosquitoe

These records originally sold for $35, direct on the label’s website. They’re now sitting on eBay for really stupid amounts of money.

Now available in 10 easy installments of $25.
Financing now available in 10 easy installments of only $23.50! But hurry, this offer won’t last!

Tracklist

A1 Opening Titles 0:33
A2 Theme From Jurassic Park 3:27
A3 Incident At Isla Nublar 5:20
A4 Journey To The Island 8:53
B1 The Raptor Attack 2:49
B2 Hatching The Baby Raptor 3:20
B3 Welcome To Jurassic Park 7:55
B4 My Friend, The Brachiosaurus 4:16
C1 Dennis Steals The Embryo 4:50
C2 A Tree For My Bed 2:12
C3 High-Wire Stunts 4:09
C4 Remembering Petticoat Lane 2:48
C5 Jurassic Park Gate 2:04
D1 Eye To Eye 6:37
D2 T-Rex Rescue & Finale 7:40
D3 End Credits 3:26

Vinyl – May 2014

In May, I bought only six records. Below are four of the six.

Pink Floyd – Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd - Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd – Pink Floyd

This is a very rare Pink Floyd bootleg – recorded live at Musikhalle in Hamburg, Germany on February 25, 1971. The front cover is pretty offensive – so I’m showcasing the back cover. The specific copy I acquired is a second state pressing from the original, first-ever bootleg recording of the famed 1971 Musikhalle performance. The differences in pressings are equally subtle as they are superficial.

First State - Impossible to find
First State – The original Musikhalle bootleg (no text). Nearly impossible to come across.
Second State – Very difficult to find. This is the version I own.
Third State - the most common of the three variations. Moderately difficult to find. Note the different arrangement of text compared to the second state.
Third State – the most common of the three variations. Moderately difficult to find. Note the different arrangement of text compared to the second state.

This bootleg was known for a few things: its rarity, its really obscene front cover, and its excellent recording quality featuring outstanding performances of songs like Careful with that Axe, Eugenie, Embryo, and Atom Heart Mother (performed with a backing brass and choir arrangement). It was also known for a really loud, chilling scream during Careful with that Axe, Eugene. The scream is queued up below (not advised for playback using headphones):

This legendary record has been copied many times by many of the big bootleggers of the 1970s. It’s been repressed before with titles such as:

Pink Floyd - Germany 1970 Titles v2

and then there’s the extremely rare version of all the Muiskhalle bootlegs  –  Embrwo.

Embrwo - The holy grail of all Pink Floyd bootlegs
Embrwo – The holy grail of all Pink Floyd bootlegs

Embrwo, pictured above, is believed to be from the infamous Los Angeles based bootleg label Trade Mark of Quality (TMOQ) and was exported from the US to the UK to another bootlegger known as Freddy Stomper (aka, ‘The Marked Hand’). For Freddy, locating a record pressing plant in London to manufacture bootlegs was nearly impossible. So the story goes that Freddy got in touch with the guys at TMOQ to have one of his tapes (Musikhalle ’71) pressed on colored vinyl, shipped to the UK without sleeves (as not to alert customs), and then packaged and stamped in London. He repackaged the records in thin white cardboard sleeves and rubber stamped them as Embrwo. ‘The Marked Hand’ most likely intended for the title to be Embryo, the name of a song performed on the bootleg. Shortly after the sale debut of Embrwo in March of 1973, the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) raided many UK record stores suspected of selling bootlegs. In fact, one of the main stores raided for selling bootlegs in London was none other than Virgin Records – The exact same Virgin Records owned by billionaire tycoon Richard Branson. The last time a genuine copy of Embrwo appeared on ebay, the album sold for close to $2100. If you go on youtube and search for “Pink Floyd M502” you’ll come across the full recording of this legendary bootleg.

Tracklist

A1 Green Is The Colour / Careful With That Axe, Eugene 14:00
A2 Cymbaline 11:00
B1 Embryo 11:00
B2 Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun 14:00
C1 Saucerful Of Secrets 20:00
D1 Atom Heart Mother (with brass and choir) 28:00

 

Leo Kottke – 6- And 12-String Guitar

Leo Kottke – 6 and 12 String Guitar

I found an original first pressing of this at Amoeba in San Francisco in NM condition. It’s absolutely fantastic. The 12 string guitar musicianship on this album is really enjoyable. The acoustic folk sound makes me want to revisit Yosemite. Below is my favorite track from the album.

Tracklist

A1 The Driving Of The Year Nail
A2 The Last Of The Arkansas Greyhounds
A3 Ojo
A4 Crow River Waltz
A5 The Sailor’s Grave On The Prairie
A6 Vaseline Machine Gun
A7 Jack Fig
B1 Watermelon
B2 Jesu, Joy Of Man’s Desiring
B3 The Fisherman
B4 The Tennessee Toad
B5 Busted Bicycle
B6 The Brain Of The Purple Mountain
B7 Coolidge Rising

 

Mike Gordon – Overstep

Mike Gordon - Overstep
Mike Gordon – Overstep

This is Mike Gordon’s (bassist for Phish) fourth solo studio album (excluding two other albums where he was joined by Leo Kottke). I really like the cover art on this album. The music itself is pretty okay. I’m not necessarily blown away. Not to say the music sucked, or that it wasn’t at all good, I just don’t see myself playing this one too often in the future. Side C was definitely the best side of this album. This was one example where the cover helped push a sale – for me, at least.

Tracklist

A1 Ether
A2 Tiny Little World
A3 Jumping
A4 Yarmouth Road
B1 Say Something
B2 Face
B3 Paint
B4 Different World
C1 Peel
C2 Long Black Line
C3 Surface

 

Various Artists – Dumb and Dumber Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Don’t judge my superior tastes in music…

Shop Radio Cast, a record label based in Canada, re-released this quintessential 90’s soundtrack in May. There was a limited edition of 50 copies on red and white wax, which sold out quickly. My copy is on blue wax and is limited to 500 copies. The music on this soundtrack is hit-and-miss, but I dig the majority of the songs. Some of the tracks downright suck. The good songs definitely outweigh the bad songs in either case. I’ve had the CD of this soundtrack for a long time. I still listen to the songs by Crash Test Dummies, Green Jelly, Echobelly and The Primitives when I come across them in my iTunes library. Oh, and side D has an special etching.

Pretty Bird... Pretty Bird...
Pretty Bird… Pretty Bird…

I realize the etching in the photo above is hard to see, but hopefully the caption will help you figure out what you’re looking at.

A1 Crash Test Dummies The Ballad Of Peter Pumpkinhead
A2 Deadeye Dick New Age Girl
A3 Echobelly Insomniac
A4 Pete Droge If You Don’t Love Me (I’ll Kill Myself)
B1 Primitives, The Crash (The ’95 Mix)
B2 Willi One Blood Whiney, Whiney (What Really Drives Me Crazy)
B3 Gigolo Aunts Where I Find My Heaven
B4 Butthole Surfers Hurdy Gurdy Man
C1 Sons, The Too Much Of A Good Thing
C2 Green Jelly The Bear Song
C3 Lupins, The Take
C4 Deee-Lite You Sexy Thing
C5 Proclaimers, The Get Ready

Vinyl – April 2014

April was great for my record collecting (and my wallet) because I was able to part with more records than I was purchasing them. My multicolored Stills-Young Band bootleg For What It’s Worth – Summer 76 Tour (one of the crown jewels of my collection) finally sold on eBay, and I traded in a few records to a local record store for store credit.

It was a really mediocre record anyway.
It was a really mediocre record anyway.
But it sure looked awesome.
But it sure looked awesome.

A few weeks ago I mentioned that I’d be attending the KUSF Rock n’ Swap event in April, but after thinking about it, I decided it was probably best to pass. My spending allowance on LPs was pretty high last month as it was.

That said, I did bring home a few releases.

Mod Lang Record Shop – Albany, CA

This first one I picked up spur-the-moment. Casually passing through Albany while running errands I saw this tiny sign on the sidewalk and did a double-take. I’d never heard of Mod Lang. I parked and headed in.

Better not be loaded with mud and dust.
Better not be loaded with mud and dust.

Inside Mod Lang was an eclectic selection of LPs and CDs of all styles. Despite the great selection, it was kind of a mess. It reminded me a lot of Jack’s Record Cellar on Scott and Page in San Francisco. Dozens of boxes filled with records and piles of clutter (old Rolling Stone magazines, newspapers, cardboard cutout promotional displays, etc.) It was still an excellent shop. About half of the merchandise actually is organized and is displayed in a proper shelf, but many of the boxes are yet to be shelved or are simply left sitting in aisles. I overheard the manager talking to another customer that she had just received a bunch of records that had yet to be shelved – she explained that the shop isn’t usually clogged with boxes.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to sound like the boxed clutter is bad. I enjoy digging, anyway. It’s all part of the fun.

After about 15 minutes of box digging, I had three albums worth mentioning. Among them, a copy of the Pink Floyd dual bootleg Nocturnal Submission: Robot Love from Beacon Island Records.

Pink Floyd - Nocturnal Submission: Robot Love (bootleg)
Pink Floyd – Nocturnal Submission: Robot Love (dual bootleg album)

I already own a copy of this, so I saw no reason to pick it up. This dual bootleg is actually two separate well known Pink Floyd bootlegs  packaged in a single album.  The two albums are Best of Tour 72 and the original release of Nocturnal Submission: Robot Love from The Amazing Kornyphone Record Label.

Pink Floyd - Best Of Tour 72 (live at The Rainbow Theatre February 20, 1972)
Pink Floyd – Best Of Tour 72 (live at The Rainbow Theater in London, UK on February 20, 1972)

Best of Tour 72 is well recognized among Floyd fans and vinyl collectors alike as being one of the earliest (and best) live recordings of Dark Side Of The Moon. In fact, when this bootleg was first being sold in 1972, customers who purchased this album occasionally mistook it for being an official release from the band – on top of the fact that this album was manufactured almost an entire year before Dark Side Of The Moon would be officially released. The recording quality is excellent. To this day, it is still debated if the recording is sourced from the BBC Radio or if it was recorded directly from the soundboard, or if it’s from an excellent audience recording. This LP features a concert recording from The Rainbow Theatre in London on February 20, 1972. A handful of the songs recorded during this performance were never released on Dark Side Of The Moon (like the song entitled ‘The Mortality Sequence’, which was scrapped and replaced with ‘Great Gig In The Sky’). Below is the entire recording.

The other album shares the exact same title Nocturnal Submission: Robot Love. This record was originally from The Amazing Kornyphone Record Label and was also released in 1972.

Pink Floyd - Nocturnal Submission: Robot Love (compilation bootleg featuring live performances and B-Sides ranging from 1969 to 1971)
Pink Floyd – Nocturnal Submission: Robot Love (compilation bootleg featuring live performances and B-Sides ranging from 1969 to 1971)

This bootleg features live performances from Pink Floyd at KQED  Studios in San Francisco on April 29, 1970, BBC Radio in London on September 30, 1971, and a few B-sides not available to the US market during their initial releases in the UK (‘Point Me at the Sky’, etc…)

So anyway, the dual LP bootleg of Nocturnal Submission: Robot Love from Beacon Island Records is basically a “buy one get one free” package containing two classic Pink Floyd bootlegs. Like I had mentioned earlier, I already have a copy of this release so I didn’t bother buying it again. Plus, it was also in worse condition than my personal copy.

The other album I found at Mod Lang was a copy of The Grateful Dead bootleg Captain Trips, etc. from The Impossible Recordworks label.

Grateful Dead - Captain Trips, etc.
Grateful Dead – Captain Trips, etc.

For $20, I kindly declined buying it. It was in decent shape, but I was more content buying a copy of The Grateful Dead’s Fillmore West.

The Grateful Dead - Fillmore West (Trade Mark Of Quality - Smokin' Pig Labels)
The Grateful Dead – Fillmore West (Trade Mark Of Quality – Smokin’ Pig Labels)

This two disc set was offered to me for $12.95. The general condition of the four sides is VG+. At it’s best, it’s Near Mint. At it’s worst, it’s VG. It’s a pretty enjoyable performance from The Dead playing at Fillmore West’s final night of operation in San Francisco on July 2, 1971.

Tracklist

A1 Had To Move
A2 Me And Bobby Mcgee
A3 You Lied You Cheated
A4 I Know You Rider
B1 Playing In The Band
B2 Got No Chance Of Losing
B3 Ain’t It Crazy
B4 Me And My Uncle
B5 Railroad Blues
B6 Sunshine Daydream
C1 Sing Me Back Home
C2 Momma Tried
C3 Big Boss Man
C4 Casey Jones
C5 Johnny Be Good
D1 Sugar Magnolia
D2 Dedicated To Owsley

Apparently the tracks on this bootleg have been rearranged in a separate sequence than how they were originally recorded. Additionally, there are  a handful of songs that were performed but were not included on this release. The real kick in the teeth is that the audio from this bootleg is off pitch – The band sounds slightly speed-up and cartoonish. There’s no real way of knowing the recording quality of a bootleg until you play it back.In either case, I ripped a personal copy of the record, cleaned it up, and resold it on eBay a week later for a little more than $30.

A week or so later I returned to Mod Lang on the weekend and dug through a few unorganized shelves. I came across this:

New York Dolls – Dolls Live: Dallas ’74

This is a New York Dolls bootleg entitled Dolls Live: Dallas ’74. According to the final edition of Hot Wacks (last published around 1992), there are only about 6 vinyl bootlegs of New York Dolls known to exist. It’s from a label known as Smilin’ Ears. The spine of the sleeve claims the record was manufactured in Venezuela. Bootleggers in the 1970’s often claimed their records were manufactured in far-off locations like Venezuela, Luxembourg, or Brazil as an attempt to throw off investigating authorities.

The sound of the recording isn’t particularly great. It’s muddy and noticeably softer sounding (quieter) than most concert recordings of rock and roll / punk bands. Discogs member bryan.white.9 said it pretty well when he gave a review of this bootleg:

Obviously recorded with a handheld cassette player, this bootleg recording documents a show at the legendary Mother Blues club in Dallas, Texas during [their] final 1974 tour, featuring the original line up. The Dolls were supporting the popular Texas band The Werewolves and facing a hostile/apathetic crowd. The band sounds discouraged, as the audience taunts them with cries of “We want the a Werewolves!” through their show, but gamely perform their set. The very poor sound quality of the recording and the “end of the line” feel of the performance-supporting a band most listeners have never heard of-make this a hard recording to recommend. I have no idea whether this was one of the shows performed in red leather & Soviet paraphernalia but it would go a long way towards explaining the audience’s hostility; Dallas in 1974 would have been the worst possible venue for such gear. Fantastically rare, this live album has practically nothing else to offer.

Tracklist

A1 Pills
A2 Frankenstein
A3 Lone Star Queen
A4 Don’t Start Me Talkin’
A5 Lookin’ For A Kiss
B1 Personality Crisis
B2 Vietnamese Baby
B3 Bad Girl
B4 Give ‘Em A Great Big Kiss (Kiss Me)

At the counter I was offered the bootleg for $8 after a $10 trade-in store credit (I gave away some records from last month’s failed backyard rummage sale). The recording quality is really mediocre. It was admittingly purchased mainly for the rarity factor. I’ll probably flip it on eBay in a few weeks. Most copies have previously sold on eBay between $25 to $100.

All in all, Mod Lang Records is an excellent shop. They carry new music too!

 Record Store Day 2014 – April 19, 2014

I didn’t particularly care for this year’s Record Store Day (RSD). I had no interest in spending part of my weekend participating in the festivities. Out of the 75+ exclusive releases, only two actually appealed to me. The first release being Dave Alvin and Phil Alvin’s double 10″ EP Songs From Common Ground. The other release was a 7″ split featuring Jason Lytle (frontman for Modesto based indie rock group Grandaddy) and Neko Case entitled Satellite Of Love. Both of these titles I ordered from eBay at face-value without having to even get out of bed Saturday morning. I realize it defeats the purpose of RSD to buy RSD releases from eBay, but honestly, I wasn’t interested in dealing with aggressive crowds and long lines early in the morning for two titles.

While browsing the exclusive RSD release titles online, one release from Chris Forsyth and the Solar Motel Band entitled Solar Live 11.15.13 particularly caught my attention:

Someone must really love Little Feat (or TAKRL)

I imagine most people who see this album probably won’t recognize that this cover is directly copied from (or at least paying homage to) a Little Feat bootleg entitled Electrif Lycanthrope (Be-Bop Deluxe)  from The Amazing Kornyphone Record Label (TAKRL).

Little Feat - Electrif Lycanthrope (Be-Bop Deluxe) (TAKRL bootleg from 1970s)
Little Feat – Electrif Lycanthrope (Be-Bop Deluxe) (TAKRL bootleg from 1970s)

I see no resemblance between the two.

Last year’s 2013 RSD had a similar release trying to appear like a Trade Mark Of Quality (TMOQ) bootleg with a paper insert. This one was from The Greenhornes entitled Live At Shake It Records  –   Fall 2001. Note the “Shake It Mark Of Quality” logo in the bottom right corner:

Below is the original Trade Mark Of Quality (TMOQ) logo – sticker’d or printed on every original TMOQ release back in the 1970s – as well as some examples of typical TMOQ releases featuring this logo (just because).

Original Trade Mark Of Quality Logo
Jimi Hendrix – Broadcasts
Bob Dylan – While The Establishment Burns
Pink Floyd – Omayyad
Led Zeppelin – Going To California

You get the point…

It’s kind of funny how some official releases in the last few years have been packaged to look like bootleg records taken right from the 1970s. 

Vinyl – March 2014

I was excited for March for a few reasons – new job, got a huge tax refund, planned a trip in a few months from now. But more than anything in March, I was excited for three separate vinyl rummage sales.

The Newark Music Swap Meet – Newark, CA – March 23, 2014

We were told about this sale by a gentleman over at Dave’s Records on San Pablo in Berkeley. He told us about the sale the day before it took place. I had heard from other collectors before that the Newark Music Swap Meet is not very good. Even so, on an open Sunday with nothing really going on, Hannah and I decided to make an afternoon checking it out.

Upon arrival, I suddenly understood why. It was probably the most underwhelming sale I’ve ever attended. Granted, we showed up at around 1 PM when it first opens at 7 AM and closes at 2, but there were only about 8 individual sellers and most of what they sold was either overpriced or in terrible condition. Hannah found a copy of Neil Young’s Harvest for only $1. The cover was split down the bottom of the sleeve and the record was very visibly warped.  Figures.

Even the atmosphere inside the hall was not very pleasant. Contrary to other swap meets I’ve attended, there wasn’t the sound of bustling people chattering or the sounds of 60s surf rock playing over a portable turntable speakers. Instead, the hum of fluorescent lights and distant microphone feedback from a poorly connected house PA system was the tune. Okay, sure, I’m slightly exaggerating  – there actually were people chattering, but it was a dull roar compared to inaudible bartering and shouting.

We didn’t see anything particularly worth buying. I did find a sealed copy of a Runaways bootleg entitled Live In Concertfrom Wizardo Records. But for an asking price of $35, and not knowing a single song of theirs, I couldn’t justify the purchase. Besides, sealed records like that are really only good when purchased as a bargain since their best value is being resold still sealed.

We eventually made our way to one of the final tables. A middle-aged couple from the Central Valley with four crates were  mainly selling classic rock and some 60s psychedelia. I wasn’t seeing anything particularly interesting, up until I asked if he had any Pink Floyd (the bread and butter of my vinyl collecting). He presented to me a copy of the bootleg Dark Side Of The Moo from Trixie Records.

Pink Floyd - Dark Side Of The Moo
Pink Floyd – Dark Side Of The Moo

If you didn’t recognize this cover instinctively as a well known Pink Floyd bootleg, than you probably wouldn’t even know this record has anything to do with Pink Floyd at all. The labels on the vinyl itself reference The Screaming Abdabs, a name briefly used by the band prior to 1966.

Who????
The Screaming Whats…?

This bootleg isn’t really a bootleg. It’s more like a pirated LP containing rare B sides and studio outtakes from 1967 to 1970. In fact, there is only one genuine studio outtake on this album which is Track A6: Scream Thy Last Scream. The rest are just a collection of officially released B-sides. Probably the best part of this record, at least for me personally, is the cover itself. I dig how it’s similar to the theme of Atom Heart Mother’s cover which also features a cow – yet it’s subtle and doesn’t have any text all over the place much in the way that most bootleg covers do. Plus, the photographer got the attention of this cow, which was then immortalized in a photo and used for an illegitimate record cover. For some reason, I find humor in that. As far as the content of this bootleg goes, the music on this record is mostly from an era of Pink Floyd that I’m not too crazy about (mid to late 60s). To be honest, I find a lot of these songs to be pretty nauseating. I can’t say I’m excited to hear a poor quality outtake of this:

See? Told you it’s nauseating.

Fortunately a few songs on this album are actually worth listening. My two personal favorites are The Crumbling Land and Point Me At the Sky (which sounds similar to Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds by The Beatles)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBwX8oexkCw

Tracklist

A1 Astronomy Domine 4:08
A2 Candy And A Current Bun 2:43
A3 Apples And Oranges 3:01
A4 It Would Be So Nice 3:41
A5 Interstellar Overdrive 3:04
A6 Scream Thy Last Scream 4:44
B1 Heart Beat, Pig Meat 3:09
B2 Crumbling Land 4:12
B3 Embryo 4:39
B4 Point Me At The Sky 3:37
B4 Come On Number 51, Your Time Is Up 4:57
B6 Mademoiselle Knobs 1:50

Such is the case when buying vinyl bootlegs – you never really know what the quality of the recordings will sound like until you fork over $$$ and listen to them at home.

At the same table, Hannah found an excellent copy of The Beatles’ album Rubber Soul. It’s in great shape and looks like it had never been played before.

The Beatles - Rubber Soul (German Odeon Records release 1C 062-04 115)
The Beatles – Rubber Soul (German release on Odeon Records – 1C 062-04 115)

Her specific version is from Germany on Odeon Records (year of release is unknown). She already had a copy of Rubber Soul, but her other release is from the United States on Capital Records. The US releases left out many hits from this album which other versions from other countries contained in their releases. For example, songs like Drive My Car, Nowhere Man, What Goes On, and If I Need Someone were all excluded from US releases.

Odeon German Release Side 1 - Contains missing songs Drive My Car and Nowhere Man
Odeon German Release:    Side 1 – Contains missing songs Drive My Car and Nowhere Man
US Capital Release: Side 1
US Capital Release: Side 1
R-5270608-1389207650-7105
German Odeon release:    Side 2 – Contains missing songs What Goes on and If I Need Someone
US Capital release:   Side 2
US Capital release:    Side 2

After buying our albums and chatting with the sellers for a few minutes, we left. There’s a good chance that unless I arrive at 7 AM at the next Newark Music Swap Meet that I probably will not return to this event.

 

Cavern Discos’ Rummage Sale – Albany, CA – March 29, 2014

Two years ago while browsing the garage sales section on Craigslist I came across a post from a gentleman who was planning on selling about 9000 records he had in storage. The ebay record store Cavern Discos, which specialized in funk, disco, and soul records, was officially kaput and the owner needed to liquidate all of his surplus records sitting in storage. So he posted an ad publicly on craigslist saying that he will be selling all of his records in his backyard and that every record was worth $3 each – regardless of rarity, condition or actual value. On the day of his sale about 100 people came into his backyard and tore apart his boxes of records (and his garden).

So flash-forward two years. A week before the sale, the owner of Cavern Discos sent me a message and told me that the very last of his records were moved from storage and were ready to be sold. It would be the exact same sale as last time – except this time the records were now to be sold at $1 each.

Saturday rolls around – and it’s pouring rain. California has been in its worst drought on record and the one time I actually was hoping sunshine and dry conditions I get the exact opposite. I arrived at the sellers house about 20 minutes before the sale starts. Unlike the last sale two years earlier, there was no one anxiously waiting around his front yard. I figured this was because it was raining and no one wanted to deal with the conditions. In actually what had happened was the buyers were waiting in his back yard and were helping set up two outdoor tarps and a bunch of plastic floor protectors to help keep the records and the buyers dry.

It’s about 10 minutes before the sale when the seller says, “Okay, it’s pouring and it’s freezing. So let’s just start now. Everyone go to my shed and pull out one box and drop it down on the plastic floor protectors under the tarps, and then you can start your digging there.” So I went into his shed, since I was actually the closest to it, and pulled out a box of about 100 records. It was heavy but it contained probably some of the best conditions of records I could have hoped for. The ones I picked out were mostly in near mint condition. After going through a few boxes it started to get kind of chaotic. Too many people, not enough protection from the rain, and not enough boxes for each person to causally browse though. It didn’t take long before it became more unpleasant than it already was.

"No really, take your time going through that dust box of records. I'll just chill here in the rain until you're done."
“No really, take your time going through that dusty box of records. I’ll just chill here in the rain with everyone else until you’re done.”
"DUDE, STOP TRACKING IN MUD TO THE TARPS. YOU'RE GETTING MY OBSCURE 60'S BRAZILIAN PSYCHEDELIA 45s MUDDY."
“DUDE, STOP TRACKING IN MUD INTO THE TARPS. YOU’RE GETTING MY OBSCURE 60’S BRAZILIAN PSYCHEDELIA 45s MUDDY.”

Inside the shed wasn’t much better.

Uhh... I think I'm done with this sale.
“Can you move over just a foot or two so I can squeeze by and get out with my records?”                 “Absolutely not.”

Nothing smells quite like a room full of wet, sweaty middle-aged men kicking up record dust. Fun fun fun!

So after 20 minutes, I realized that this sale was a waste of my time. I left with 11 records, but only had to pay $9. My selections, in brief description were:

Grateful Dead – Workingman’s Dead

R-774120-1199404815

I’ve never really listen to the Grateful Dead, but when they come on the radio on 94.1 KPFA on Wednesday nights, it’s pretty fun music. The condition of this looks like it’s G and it was missing the original cover when I found it, but to my amazement it plays like it’s VG+. For a dollar, this was a bargain.

Various Artists – Record Store Day 2008

$_57

I don’t know a lot about this album. All I know is that I found it brand new, sealed for $1 and it had artists like Bruce Springsteen, Rage Against the Machine, Patti Smith, Pearl Jam and others. Apparently copies of this have sold on ebay recently for about $50.

Terre Thaemlitz – Raw Through A Straw / Tranquilizer

R-228728-1281520185

I recognized her name from a few ambient songs that I heard from SOMA FM’s internet streaming station Drone Zone. Good ambient musician (although she’s kind of avant-garde and out there). Also, this vinyl is totally transparent.

R-228728-1281520201

 

Eazy-E – Eazy Duz-It / Ruthless Villain (DEMONSTRATION ONLY)

R-333864-1248071272

The picture above is of the regular, studio 12″ release. The version I have has a label just like the above photo, but also reads, “DEMONSTRATION – NOT FOR SALE” just below where it reads Eazy-E. I’m not particularly a fan of rap, but a near mint Eazy-E demonstration disc for $1? Sure, why not.

Kiln – Sunbox

20140331_140459

Not going to lie – this was a total impulse buy. I’ve never heard of this group, and their music is downtempo techno / IDM. But it’s got a white label with a hand stamped little ghost on it. I thought it might be cool, or at the very least valuable. I’m still not entirely sure if either of those are true, but on ebay someone is currently selling the non-white label release for $40. Again, not a great purchase.

The Doors – The Doors

R-526319-1258832171

Coincidentally, I bought a copy of this two years ago from the same backyard sale, except this copy is in a lot better shape. It’s also a stereo release. The other copy I bought was a quadrophonic release (which I also suspect may be a counterfeit release). Even in mediocre shape, an original stereo release of this album is valued at about $20 starting price.

Bob Dylan – Nashville Skyline

R-1486272-1234519447

It’s Dylan for a dollar. Not a bad investment. Except this was a bad investment, because the condition looks VG+ but sounds like G+. Odd how that can happen.

Super Mysterious Test Pressing – ????

Too lazy to take a photo of this one, but it’s a test pressing of a 12″ hip-hop record.  Another bad impulse buy. I saw a test pressing, with no real indication of it’s origin or even it’s genre, and I didn’t think to ask questions about it since it was chaotic and pouring at the sale. It could have been jazz, or some soul, or maybe something with value none-the-less. I bagged it and thought “at the very least, I’ve wasted $1.” I later found out it’s a test pressing from hip-hop artist Mr. Lif’s 2002 single New Man Theme. Even in near mint condition, it’s garbage.

Funkstörung – Post.Art

R-302-1085021977

I bought this mainly because it was white marbled vinyl. It’s IDM / electronic music. Another bad impulse buy.

Pink Floyd – Animals

R-4627466-1370369175-5867

This definitely would have been the best of my purchases, had it not been in such terrible shape. It looked VG when I bought it, but it’s actually G+. Oh well, it’s an album I’m really not crazy about spending a lot of money on anyway. Fortunately for me this mediocre purchase only cost me $1.

David Bowie – The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars

R-422477-1323341041

For the 11 albums I bought, this was definitely the best purchase. It’s in VG shape, but it’s got excellent replay value. I wasn’t familiar at all with Bowie’s work, but I figured this was a good excuse to start.

All in all, the backyard rummage sale was a waste of my time. I plan on reselling the majority of these albums either on ebay or to one of the local record stores. Given that this sale was a joke, I was looking forward to the next day…

 

March Beat Swap Meet (#5) – Berkeley, CA – March 30, 2014

Might be fun...
Might be fun…

So Hannah and my father and I met outside the door for this event. Having never heard of it previously, I thought it might be fun for a Sunday afternoon. Getting in the door cost $5 and a canned good. I went to the store and bought five cans of expensive Progesso canned soup knowing that a good chunk of those attending would offer Hormel re-fried beans and other junk no one would actually want to eat. I give the Swap Meet that much – it was nice of them to ask for canned food as a requirement to get in the door. I think that’s an excellent way to have people actively donate food.

Once inside, there were about 8 vendors selling records. This was great, up until I realized that the sellers are almost exclusively selling rap and hip-hop only. It was disappointing to say the least. We went from table to table hoping to find some variety but did not find much. We left no more than 20 minutes after arriving. Considering Discogs was a major sponsor of this traveling swap meet, I was imagining a giant cafeteria sized swap meet with all sorts of different collectors with different specialties. Oh well.

We were bummed out with the Swap Meet, so we had lunch and decided to go to Amoeba and Rasputin on Telegraph Street closer towards UC Berkeley. Rasputin proved to offer a more enjoyable experience. In the Pink Floyd bin, I found something of interest.

Pink Floyd – Raving and Drooling

Pink Floyd - Raving and Drooling
Pink Floyd – Raving and Drooling

This is a bootleg from The Amazing Kornyphone Record Label (TAKRL) featuring a performance of three songs from November 17, 1974 in Great Britain. I had been looking for a copy of this for a few months and was finally able to buy a copy at a reasonable price. The condition was VG+ but it sounds VG for the most part. The recording itself is pretty bad. It needs some thorough equalizing. Even so, it’s definitely worth owning. Raving and Drooling sounds amazing. Shine On You Crazy Diamond is also amazing.

Tracklist

A1 Raving And Drooling 10:37
A2 You’ve Gotta Be Crazy 12:12
B1 Shine On You Crazy Diamond 23:06

March had some promising swap meets and a rummage sale that was impressive the last time it occurred two years earlier, but failed to really provide. It was still fun to attend these events. Today’s April 1st and the next KUSF Rock n’ Swap Record Event is  in about two weeks. Hopefully there will be a lot more to brag about then…

Vinyl – November 2013

It’s been a few months, but I’ve got a bunch of awesome finds to mention since my last post.

The first, which I purchased sometime in September:

STILLS-YOUNG BAND – For What It’s Worth (Hoffman Avenue Records HAR 167)

Image

Image

Image

There isn’t very much information about this bootleg. I was able to determine that, despite the misleading center label, this is actually from Hoffman Avenue Records, NOT Trenton Records like I first thought. According to the out-of-print bootleg price guide New Collector’s Price Guide For Bootlegs (Voigts, 1991), Hoffman Avenue Records is described as: (A) Bootleg company of the so called “Second Generation” in the USA. Only about 10 releases, all with covers. Some records in colored vinyl. Partly very expensive and rare. Matrix numbers are “HAR 161” – “HAR 170”.

————-

Going forward a bit, I attended USF’s November Rock ‘n Swap with my father yesterday. We arrived around 7:30 AM and were greeted by these printed signs facing the front doors.

ROFL, yeah, okay. We'll see about that.
ROFL, yeah, okay. We’ll see about that.

I love how it says “NO BOOTLEGS ALLOWED”. That’s pretty funny (to me at least), since that’s about 80% of what I actively keep an eye out for when I go from crate to crate.

It’s about an hour and half into my digging endeavors, and I have still not come across anything that particularly draws me. My father on the other hand, has come across some incredible Yardbird finds. They included:

The Yardbirds - Live Yardbirds
The Yardbirds – Live Yardbirds (featuring Jimmy Page)

What makes this release so special? Apparently there was an pressing error when this album was first produced in 1969. Side A and side B are BOTH listed as side A on the original first pressings. The original pressings were withdrawn immediately and coming across one today is very unlikely, especially in near mint condition. My father however found one yesterday. (I believe) he paid $25 for his copy. He hauled his massive 500+ page Goldmine Record Price Guide throughout the morning, and it paid off. His find, it turns out, is listed in the book at being valued in near mint at $300-400.

The book is not exaggerating. Copies typically sell for about $100+, and go as high as $400 for near mint condition.

My father’s second Yardbirds find:

The Yardbirds - Blasting at the BBC
The Yardbirds – Blasting at the BBC

This one is a bootleg (see above mention of USF disclaimer) from The Yardbirds performing at the BBC in 1966 and 1969 entitled Blasting at the BBC (BBR 004). This was recorded from the BBC in 1965 and 1969. The quality, both in recording production, and physical playback, is stellar. The seller wanted this record for $25, but my father talked him into selling it for $20. The performances on this bootleg from The Yardbirds were phenomenal. I’m honestly impressed with the overall quality. The record label is one I’ve never seen or heard of before. The label is Bird Brain Records. When I first saw the label, I almost mistook the label’s logo for K & S Records, which is an EXTREMELY rare bootleg label from the US in the 1980s. Not to mention, anything from K & S records is usually worth several hundred dollars because most records pressed from K & S were either lost in shipment from the distributors, or they were confiscated by police. Here are the two logos compared:

K & S Records Logo
K & S Records Logo – Farmer enclosed within circle
The Yardbirds - Blasting at the BBC
Bird Brain Records Logo – Bird sitting and reading, enclosed within circle

Eventually two hours later, I finally came across some fun stuff.

20130908_101336No, the fun stuff was not the record seller stretching his back on the floor…

I picked up the following records, all for $5 each, all from the same seller:

Tom Waits - One From The Heart
Tom Waits – One From The Heart

I’m a massive fan of Tom Waits’ work, but I never felt compelled to spend more than $5 on this album. I found a copy in stellar shape. It was probably played once and then never again. It was a bargain, so why not. In another crate, I came across this:

The Beatles - The Decca Tapes
The Beatles – The Decca Tapes

So this Beatles bootleg has an interesting story to it. According to author Blemo, who wrote an article in the fifth and final edition of the Canadian bootleg catalog Hot Wacks in 1996 entitled The Beatles – The Very Best of the Beatlegs, this bootleg is rated at #4 out of over 100 different Beatles bootlegs for being the best in regards to sound quality, historical importance, packaging, and enjoyability. He describes The Decca Tapes bootleg LP as:

“The story of Decca’s rejection of the Beatles’ audition tapes is well known and needs not be repeated here. The music on those tapes has been a favorite among collectors for years. Many of the songs were released as semi-legal singles in the early seventies by a US fan club. In 1979, the 15 songs from that audition tape would appear on the bootleg album, The Decca Tapes, and contained the McCartney/Lennon compisitions “Love of the Loved”, “Like Dreamers Do”, and “Hello Little Girl”. These three songs have not appeared on any of the “legitimate” releases due to contractual problems with the Beatles publishing company. The album is in excellent mono and still readily available.”

Coincidentally, I purchased the fifth edition of the Hot Wacks bootleg catalog only a week before attending this Rock ‘n Swap, and had already read Blemo’s article on the top 10 most important Beatles bootlegs to keep an eye out for. Once I saw this album sitting in the crate for $5, it was a no-brainer. I remembered that this was one not to pass up, especially at a bargain price.

The third album I purchased is of Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young:

Crosby Stills Nash and Young - 4 Way Street
Crosby Stills Nash and Young – 4 Way Street

I just attended the 26th annual Bridge School Benefit in Mountain View where I saw CSNY perform. They were incredible. Two weeks later, I found this album for $5. The album contains 2 LPs and my father recommended the album, so I purchased it.

The last two albums I picked up at the KUSF Rock N Swap were both from Led Zeppelin bootlegs.

The first is entitled Moby Dick from Jester Productions:

Led Zeppelin - Moby Dick
Led Zeppelin – Moby Dick

This bootleg was only one of 100 to exist. It originally came in a box with a T-Shirt, but almost all copies sold online do not include the shirt. My copy also did not include the shirt 🙁 But the performances are amazing. This bootleg was recorded from the soundboard in San Francisco April 27, 1969. The recording quality is pretty good, but the mix is slightly heavy on vocals. My copy is in VG condition. Otherwise an excellent concert!

The next Led Zeppelin bootleg I picked up is entitled LA Forum: A Night At Heartbreak Hotel

Led Zeppelin - LA Forum
Led Zeppelin – LA Forum

This concert was recorded in Los Angeles at the Forum on June 25, 1972. I have not had time to hear this one yet, but I will update this post once I do!

So those have been my most recent awesome vinyl purchases. I purchased a few other ones, but these are the most recent and the most interesting (to me, at least!) 😛

Vinyl – August 2013

I haven’t written anything in a while. I’ve been busy overhauling my website and have been actively job hunting. It’s a learning experience (both building HTML in Dreamweaver and job hunting). I’ve also been working on a bunch of new videos; namely time lapse videos from various locations in the bay area.

Other than that, I’m going to discuss music and vinyl records!

So here are some recent purchases:Image

Found this rare gem sitting at Grooves in San Francisco. As mentioned in an earlier post, I met a gentleman at Grooves who collected only bootleg records. He had to unfortunately sell his entire collection to an independent buyer (Grooves). About 99% of every bootleg record found at Grooves was from a single collection from a single collector. I picked up a copy of “Stairstep to Abandon” knowing the rarity of the label and knowing that anything on the shelves at Grooves is in great condition.

Here’s the known info on this record:

BAND: Pink Floyd
VENUE: Hippodrome*
LOCATION: Bristol, UK
DATE: 1974.12.14 (December 14, 1974)

Vinyl bootleg title: “Stairstep to Abandon”
Label: Ze Anonym Plattenspieler
Catalog Number: ZAP 7874

SETLIST:
A1 Echoes
B1 Breathe
B2 On the Run
B3 Time
B4 Great Gig In The Sky

Lineage: Unknown AUD > Bootleg vinyl LP “Stairstep to Abandon”

*Venue may possibly be Colston Hall. Colston Hall is what is listed on etree as the venue. Yeeshkul indicates it is indeed the Hippodrome.
More info on this can be found here: http://www.yeeshkul.com/forum/showthread.php?14318-1973-06-19-Pink-Floyd-Stairstep-To-Abandon

Fun fact about this recording: This was the final day of Pink Floyd’s 1974 Winter tour.

The recording quality is okay, nothing too outstanding for a bootleg from the mid 70s. I give it a B for recording quality. More information on the release can be found here: http://www.discogs.com/Pink-Floyd-Stairstep-To-Abandon/release/4238431

Another recent purchase: Daft Punk – DiscoverySUPERHEEEEROOOOOOO

Bought this brand new at Amoeba in San Francisco for under $20. Definitely worth it!

More stuff to come soon!

Vinyl – May 2013

I debated whether or not I should write about my April record purchases that I mentioned in the last post, because it seems tacky (even narcissistic) to brag about such materialistic things. But whatever. I admit, music and vinyl records are a strong addiction passion of mine.

Rock 'n Swap 2013

KUSF Rock ‘n Swap – April 16, 2013

My father and I attended this past KUSF Rock ‘n Swap meet in San Francisco on April 12. The scene was kind of interesting. It was 6:30 AM when we arrived. I assumed it wouldn’t be too chaotic, figuring, who the hell would willing get up to dig for rare records from individual collections at this hour? Oh wait… Apparently me. And my father… and about 50 other people. Oops. Anyway, we didn’t know where at USF the event was actually being held because we had never attended this swap meet before, but it became obvious pretty quick where we needed to be. Outside, we began to see people speed walking over to one of the halls. Inside, the scene was ridiculous.

It’s unfortunate that I did not take any photos of the event, as I was too mesmerized by the sight of over 30 individual sellers liquidating their collections. Almost all sellers were friendly and patient with their customers (myself included), though there were a few who became flustered by the large crowds. The buyers on the other hand we’re a completely different story. Most buyers were very pleasant, others we’re downright vicious. You’d know when someone was desperately looking for their “holy grail” when they’d literally stick their hands into crates other customers were browsing through when they thought they saw a glimpse of it. At one table selling 80’s pop and techno, one man barged through three separate customers and tried to stop everything just to pry his holy grail from one person’s crate which another person was casually looking through. I myself had to deal with the same one person on several occasions. I’d be looking through a metal collection (thankfully, these types of crates were never too crowded), and I’d be rudely interrupted by an overly aggressive collector.

Even so, the experience was incredible. I try to spend frivolously on only a select few records that I think are either going to be played constantly, are a bargain, or that are exceedingly rare and difficult to locate. I spent a little more than I should have, though I still bit my lip on a lot of potential purchases. I bought a total of six records. All of which I’m satisfied with. Below are my purchases:

KUSF Purchases
KUSF Purchases

From top left to bottom right:

Slayer – Angels of Death Vol. 2 (limited edition of only 313, hand-numbered bootleg, live at the Warfield in San Francisco, CA 1998)

Grandaddy – Excerpts From The Diary of Todd Zilla (amazing, underrated Grandaddy EP that feels more like a full-length album than it does an EP)

Offspring – Conspiracy of One (classic pop-punk that has a bonus track ONLY available on the vinyl release)

Pink Floyd – Atom Heart Mother (this one needs no explanation)

Electric Light Orchestra – Out Of The Blue (encompasses basically half of their all-time greatest hits)

The Beatles – White Album (another one that needs no explanation, wasn’t in the best of condition which made it a bargain purchase)

All in all, the KUSF Rock ‘n’ Swap was a great experience that I was glad to participate in. My father and I have agreed to attend the next swap meet in September.

Record Store Day 2013 – April 20, 2013

So after getting excited for the Rock ‘n’ Swap, I was completely thrilled for Record Store Day 2013. As mentioned in the previous post, I was looking forward to FINALLY obtaining a copy of Phish’s  Lawn Boy album, among other potential purchases. Lawn Boy was originally released on vinyl by Phish in a very limited quantity of 1000 copies, all of which were not sold in stores and had to be bought during their tours of the early 1990s. Copies on ebay prior to the news of the re-release would often sell for $500 on a regular basis and occasionally go as high as $1800. I sure would hate to have bought a copy of a loved album for $1000+ only to find out a high quality remaster would be re-released only a few months later.

Hannah and I woke up early to get in line at a record store that I knew would have at least one copy of Lawn Boy. I called ahead the day before to inquire which stores had copies in stock. Most stores were closed lipped and annoyed at the question – I later found out they weren’t annoyed with me, but that they were annoyed having to answering phones all day with the same inventory questions from people like myself. Eventually, I called Street Light Records in Upper Market and they told me they had ONLY 2 COPIES of Lawn Boy at their store. So anyway, like I was saying, we woke up early and got in line.

We were the first in line, which I know sounds pretty dorky for something like records, but it wasn’t long before there were over 50 people anxiously waiting behind me to hopefully get whatever it was they wanted. The person who came in line after me was in line for the exact same reason I was – he wanted Lawn Boy too. And like me, he called ahead and knew there were only 2 copies in the store. He was a massive Phish fan, claiming to have been a fan since 1992 after seeing them at the Fillmore. He was giddy that he was able to obtain the only other copy that the store had in stock. We waited about two hours before the store opened. A few minutes before the store opened, the owner popped her head out behind the door and informed me and the man behind me that she had placed the only two copies of Lawn Boy safely behind the counter so that we could take our time and not have to worry about the mad dash of crazed customers that would ensue the second the store opened.

The doors opened and 50 or more people surged in, running to the second floor where all Record Store Day exclusive titles were. It got out of hand quickly. I was unable to get upstairs and locate the other records I was looking for because I was unfamiliar with where everything was, but fortunately for me Hannah located the one other record I desperately wanted, which was Nick Drake’s remastered self titled album. Hannah was able to get a few records she had interest in, which included Cut Copy’s Bright Like Neon Love, Fitz and the Tantrums’ Out of My League 10″ and Nicholas Jaar’s remixes of Brian Eno and Grizzly Bear. I was surprised at how amazing her purchases were, considering I was unfamiliar with Fitz and the Tantrums, Nicholas Jaar’s remixes and had only sampled Bright Like Neon Love via iTunes the night before. All big ticket RSD exclusive releases at Street Light were completely gone in about 15 minutes or so. At this point, I didn’t even bother looking for anything else. I got muh Phish and muh Nick Drake. I was more than satisfied.

Also in April, I purchased this Linda Ronstadt bootleg that I had been looking for for some time. It’s entitled ‘Wishin’ I was a Cub Scout‘:

Linda Ronstadt - Wishin I was a Cub Scout
Linda Ronstadt – Wishin I was a Cub Scout

This vinyl is a recording of a live FM concert from July 21, 1974 in Old Roslyn, NY.  Linda’s performances during this show are absolutely incredible. The record is also from one of my favorite hodgepodge bootleg labels known as The Amazing Kornyphone Record Label (TAKRL).

Anyway, April was a great month for records! In June, Armadillo Music in Davis, CA will be hosting a massive record trade show which my father and I are excited to attend. Hopefully I’ll come across some awesome stuff that I can discuss about in a few weeks. But for now, I’ll have to bit my lip on buying other records that have got my attention:

eBay: Pink Floyd – Ivor Wayne

Vinyl – March 2013

April is just around the corner and I’m itching to get some new records in my collection ever since I went on a spending hiatus after purchasing this rare record back in early January. In the last 16 weeks, I’ve spent a grand total of $30 on records, which is REALLY saying a lot for my addictive habit. Plus, after browsing around online, I saw this picture and was completely blown away (jealous) by this Tom Waits fan’s collection:

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Note the top left of the picture:

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The two identical records highlighted above could be considered “holy grails” to a lot of collectors. Those records were supposed to be the original releases for ‘Swordfishtrombone‘, but apparently Island Records said no to the album cover – which Tom Waits himself designed, no less – and so they were rejected. They’re pretty hard to find, as they were only released in Australia and in very limited quantity. In some cases, they’ve sold as high as $700 each. This guy apparently owns two of them!

Rare records aside, I did get a rather interesting book recently. I met a fellow vinyl-head at Grooves in San Francisco a few weeks ago who had a very interesting collection. He specialized in collecting vinyl bootlegs. Not counterfeits of official studio releases, or pirated records, but unofficial material such as concerts, demos, and even interviews – all pressed on vinyl. His collection was enormous from what he told me. He’d been collecting since the early 1970s when bootleg vinyl records were starting to become more common (if they could ever be considered “common”). He did admit unfortunately that he sold every single piece he owned a few months earlier (to a single buyer, at that). I myself have a large passion for music, especially live music, so we talked about live music and vinyl bootlegs for almost an hour. Before leaving the store, he informed me about a very awesome (and very rare) book he owned which he insisted that he give me. He said that my passion for vinyl records and live music reminded him a lot of himself during his youth. It was quite humbling.

The book is entitled ‘Voigts New Collector’s Price Guide For Bootlegs’.

IMG_1976

This book is actually autographed by the author. The book is really cool. It’s basically a price guide for about 90% of all vinyl bootlegs from 1970 to 1991. I’m thoroughly enjoying this book, but there are two main flaws: The first being that it is out dated (price-wise) and the second being that the values listed in the book are in German Marks (now replaced by the Euro). Having said that, the book is an excellent reference with an incredible amount of info. The first few pages mention about the tens of hundreds of bootleg labels that existed from the 1970s to the 1990s. That alone makes from an interesting read, as many of the labels were underground and pretty sketchy when it came to any real information regarding their origin.

I’ve already found a few of the bootleg titles in my collection in the book. Take for example this Talking Heads bootleg:IMG_1928In the Price Guide book, it lists Workshop Image as being 98 Deutsche Marks, which equates to 50.11 Euros, which equates to $64.25 USD (thanks, Google). Keep in mind, 98 Marks was the going price back in 1991, so this may be worth more…? I doubt anyone would pay more than $50 for this, but even so, it’s pretty cool to know what my few rare vinyl bootlegs may be worth!

Shifting gears for a minute, I’m really excited for Record Store Day this year. Phish has announced that they’re going to re-release Lawn Boy on vinyl. Considering that it’s been out of print since forever, and that copies from the original release are currently worth 500 to 800 on ebay, I’ll be sure to get a copy this April 20th! On top of that, USF is having their Rock-n-Swap meet in April as well, so I hope to come across some awesome stuff there too. I can’t wait for April!

That’s all for now. I’ll be sure to discuss (or brag about) my vinyl finds next month (hopefully).