Most expensive music purchases
3-25-09 Most expensive music purchases
Everything’s relative. In Japan, even normal CD’s in shops are $30+! But please understand, I didn’t get to be known as Mr. Mega-Collector by sheer tonnage of spenditure. I bought all those $200+ LP’s when they were still $4.99! But I can certainly spill the beans on some of my youthful folly.
I’d only been working for a few days, maybe didn’t even have my first paycheck (If I didn’t already have it, it was imminent). A friend took me to a long-gone South Bay record store where the erratic owner was selling his ‘rare records’ ostensibly to fund a drug binge. I paid US$50 cash for the 45 “La Tua Casa Comoda” by the Italian progressive rock band Il Balletto Di Bronzo. “$50!”, you say. I’ve still got the only copy of it I’ve ever seen – I got mine in the summer of ’76. Both songs are now ‘bonus tracks’ on re-issues of their “Ys.” album.
I believe I paid US$60 for a German pressing of “Sort Of” by Slapphappy, towards the end of the 70’s. Another one you don’t see everyday. Took ages for it to get issued on CD, which thankfully it has (in Japan, as a kami sleeve CD).
In Udagawa-cho in Tokyo, I was once in a tiny record store (that no longer exists) that had three of the “Major Force” (Toshio Nakanishi) Japanese 12” singles that I was after, for about US$60 each – I bought all three.
My white label mono promo “We’re Only In It For The Money” LP by Frank Zappa & The Mothers Of Invention set me back about US$30, when they was a heck-of-a-lot to pay, even for a rare rock LP (a friend spotted it at a swap meet in the mid-70’s, and called me, woke me up, and asked my permission to buy it on my behalf. I’m still glad he did. Thanks, Ed!). I’ve passed by more “too expensive for me” Zappa records that I care to recount ($500 promo 45’s etc.)
I impulsed The Who “Ready Steady Who” original EP, when I saw it on the wall of a collectible record store (no longer there, of course) – mint mint mint, and US$50. I bought many original British EP’s from this dealer, but most of them were in the $8 - $15 range (at that time, the early 80’s).
I recently paid US$25 for the 2nd Heebeegeebees LP, “20 Big No. 2’s”. In fact, another spoken word / comedy LP, Barry Humphries “Sandy Agonistes” set me back about US$35…on eBay. Not many big buck purchases on eBay, however. Too much chance of it getting squashed / crushed in transit. Crazy Casey “The Beast & I” ($40), the first Bo Hansson (“Hansson & Karlsson” original LP, $40). But, believe it or not, those are the only above regular retail purchases from eBay that I can even remember!
I remember mail-ordering LP’s from Switzerland was extraordinarily expensive, at least in the late 80’s. I think two different Thomas Diethelm LP’s set me back about $60 (for both) – and they were just regular new ‘in print’ LP’s + postage.