When CDs were introduced to the world as the new medium for music, the “experts” proclaimed the vinyl album dead. While the CD offered a clarity in sound never heard before, the vinyl album possessed a warmth in sound that the new CD could not. The CD was also much more compact and easier to carry around and could hold a great deal more material than the album could.
And for a time there was a marked decline in vinyl sales. But music aficionados soon found the old vinyl sound more to their liking and once again returned to purchasing vinyl.
The younger generation saw the “new” old format as collector’s items and have been compiling new album collections.
But there are plenty of the original vinyl in record collections…and some of them are worth a lot of money.
As with all collectible items, the rarer the items is the more money they are worth; as are albums in limited editions or were previously owned by a celebrity.
Record specialist Phil Barton rated the most valuable of albums. Not surprising that members of The Beatles are prominent in the mix.
The top 20 are:
Ringo Starr received the first copy printed of the “White Album”. It sold for £730,876 – $910,000 – at an auction last year.
Before there were The Beatles, there was The Quarrymen – John, Paul, George, and Colin Hanton on drums with John Duff Low on piano – released “That’ll Be the Day” and “In Spite of All the Danger”. What is believed to be the only copy is listed as being worth £100,000.
The Beatles made a single pressing a one sided single of “Love Me Do” and it is valued at £80,500.
New Age/Electronic music artist Jean Michel Jarre printed a single copy of his album “Music for Supermarkets” and then destroyed the master tapes. The result is an album worth £10,000 to £30,000.
Frank Wilson recorded “Do I Love You (Indeed I Do” on the Motown imprint Soul Only two original copies have been found and are currently worth £25,000.
The Sex Pistols recorded their version of the British National Anthem – “God Save the Queen” – and with only about 300 of them in existence, the record is worth about £12,000.
Only about 100 copies of the Billy Nicholls’ album “Would You Believe” were created; as a result the album is valued at £10,000.
Once The Beatles became popular their albums were pressed by the millions at one time; but that first single “Please Please Me” was not and is valued at £7,500.
It is said that Robert Johnson sold his soul to the devil to play the guitar and the Blues like no one ever has…or ever will. He became the original member of the 27 Club. Only two photographs of Johnson are known to exist and his 78rpm albums are almost as rare. His “Kind Hearted Woman Blues” has been valued at £7,000.
EMI used the first Queen single “Bohemian Rhapsody” as part of an invitation to a label party. The invitation package included the seven inch single, a book of matches, a pen, a menu, an outer card sleeve, a scarf, an EMI goblet, and a ticket. The entire package is valued at £5,000.
U2’s “Pride” was originally pressed on clear vinyl in Australia. Anyone with a coloured vinyl copy has an album worth £5,000.
John’s Children recorded the single “Midsummer Night’s Scene” and “Sara Crazy Child” for a single and even though it was pressed, the single was never released. Anyone who has managed to get their hands on a copy has a record worth £4,000.
Only six UK copies of the Ron Hargrave single “Latch On” and “Only a Daydream” exist and are valued at £3,000.
The original pressing of Led Zeppelin’s self titles debut album had the band’s name in turquoise instead of the now familiar organe; as a result the original pressing is worth, £3,000
When the demo’s of “Love Me Do” and “PS I Love You” were pressed, they had Paul’s name spelled McArtney. Those demo copies are worth £3,000.
David Bowie died in January; a few copies of his single release of “Space Oddity” and “Wild Eyed Boy from Freecloud” came in an unreleased picture sleeve. Those few copies are worth £3,000.
The Bubblegum Psych group Tinkerbells Fairydust recorded a self titled album with an elaborate album package that included a “peephole” in the back; however, the album was never released. Anyone who has managed to get their hands on a copy of the album has a package worth £3,000.
The original release of “Erotica” by Madonna was a picture disc but stories surfaced about Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson and the picture disc was withdrawn. The album is worth £2,000 for anyone who has one of the original albums.
Choosing the right single from an album can be a difficult choice. Originally Paul McCartney had chosen “Love is Strange” from the “Wildlife” album as a single release but later changed his mind. However, a few copies of the single got out and are now worth £1,500 to £2,000.
Tudors Lodges released only one album “Tudor Lodge” on the Vertigo label. Today that album is worth £1,200.
As with all collectibles, popularity, condition, and rarity all play vital parts in how much an album is worth.
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