Friday, December 18, 2009


My firm belief is that prices should indicate the supply and demand of the record being sold. Before the powerful tool we know as the internet, these kind of estimations could be difficult and plenty of mistakes were made. On my part as well as with other dealers. Since there's a lot of poor information around online (like unpaid for auctions on popsike and people trying to get lucky setting a high price tag), I think the best way is to use a combination. The whole toolbox so to say, that is your gut feeling and knowledge, online information and, to a lesser extent, printed price guides.

Going through my old paper lists from the mid 90's I can definitely say that I made quite a few pricing mistakes. Every now and then I get reminded of these when I see certain titles listed/sell for big money. I've listed some of the biggest pricing mistakes I usually get reminded of during sleepless nights...

Milton Wright - Spaced - This was regarded as "the poor Milton Wright album without Keep it up" when I started dealing. On my first list I had two copies at £10 each and only managed to sell one. I relisted it later at same price and it sold (if I remember correctly Rainer Trüby was the lucky customer). In 1999 I had another two copies but increased the price to £50. The last decade showed how incredibly rare this LP is and the top eBay price is $1149.


Directions - Self titled - I listed it for £10 in the mid 90's and it didn't sell. Since then I have only had it twice and the highest I sold it for was 2200 SEK. Again time has proven this to be a very rare record with popsike top hit being $361.


Hörselmat - Svenska LÖD AB - Again on one of my paper lists at £280 which was then the highest price I ever tried to sell a record for. Last copy online sold for $1581. Even though it used to be found every now and then (DJ/collector Mad Mats found two copies when we were scoring Stockholm record stores together one day in the mid 90's) this album has proven to be very very rare.


Boscoe - Same - In 1997 I had listed this for £100 and it sold to one of the local soul/funk collectors. He later sold the same copy on eBay for abuy it now price of $999 in 2007 if I remember correctly.

Mulatu of Ethiopia - Same (Worthy) - In 1997 me and friend/dealer Max Hansson went to Tokyo together. The Wax Trax record shop had around 50 sealed copies of this for sale at around £30 each. As I was unsure of the value I bought only two copies. One I kept myself and listed the other for £65. Last eBay copy sold for $726.

Other painful memories involves Toby King, Leon Debouse "A fine instrument", Steady Wailin Sid "Spirit of 76", Snoopy Dean "Wiggle that thang", Cortex "Mary & Jeff" (20 copies scored in a trade deal and all sold for £40-75), Joey Gilmore album, Joki Freund "Yogi jazz", Phyllis Bailey's incredibly rare Ameri-Com album and many more.


All records were of course not sold too cheap at the time and when re-reading old lists it's amazing to see how some prices on records proven not to be so rare have drastically dropped. In the mid 90's with the more inefficient record market and prices being hyped on records played on the then strong acid jazz, rare groove scenes etc, many now fairly easy to find classics were overpriced. Some examples below!
Marva Whitney - Live & lowdown at the apollo - £150
JB's - Food for thought - £85
Leroy Hutson - Hutson - £85
Band of Thieves - Same - £130 (auction price)

And when the big hype for European bossa records came in the mid 90's myself and many other European dealers sold some records way too expensive due to the incredible demand. Like Lill Lindfors "Vi har varann" £25, Alice Babs "67" £60, Meta Roos "Zazueira" £125 and Gimmicks Of Sweden £125. My deepest apologies to those who bought them but I guess you all sold them with good profit back then!


It will surely be interesting to look back at today's record prices and to see how the market will develop in the next 10-15 years. After all one man's trash is another man's treasure.


  1. Great read!
    Guess it all comes to learning by doing..

  2. I had some excellent scores from charity shops over the years, like 'Mutha's nature' by James Brown for 50p :-)

    I was flipping through a pile of chirty shop vinyl earlier this year and saw a record by a guy called J.R. Bailey. The vinyl was original US and mint, cover was solid, but I thought, "hmm, £4.99 seems a bit much for a record I have never heard of" so I left it behind.

    You can imagine how quickly I left work and drove back across town when I found out what an original copy of the 'Just me n' you" LP was worth... ;-)

  3. You forgot when we found 2 copies of Stark reality in mid 90´s at skivix and I traded my copy for £25 to you.......

  4. Hi Per! Thanks for reminding me of the Stark Reality's. That's why you always have a special place in my heart! A friendly customer reminded me of Elysian spring that we sold for 1100 SEK just before Gilles Peterson starting playing it and after that it's been going for 520-910 Usd. A funny note about that is that I offered it first to a guy who had it at his wantlist but he left it because it was way too expensive. Lars

  5. Vilken är den dyraste skivan du sålt?

  6. Hej! Den dyraste skivan jag sålt är en soul singel. Gruppen heter Carbon copies och låten Just don't love you. Jag fick den i byte av en stammis till butiken. Han hade varit inne med den en gång tidigare men vi hade ingen aning om priset på den så den blev liggande. Sedan hörde båda jag och han som bytte in skivan en Engelsk soul DJ som heter Gareth Donovan. Han spelade den i Uppsala och sa att den var mycket ovanlig. Jag la sedan ut den på ebay och fick 1736 Usd för den vilket motsvarar 14 lax med den växlingen som var då. Stammisen som bytte in den hade hittat den Väderkvarnens antik i Uppsala för ca 20 kr så han var den som gjorde bästa vinsten.

  7. Svenska Löd Ab! - Hörselmat: