On Sunday afternoon, my wife and I were dropping some household items off at Brother Wolf Animal Rescue that we no longer needed. After doing that, and buying a few items in their thrift store, we ambled across the street to Regeneration Station; a huge airplane-hangar-like facility where things are salvaged, turned into art, or simply sold as antiques. The building was filled with a few dozen dealer spaces to paw through. I found a huge cache of albums that immediately caught my eye with goods like these staring me down.
These stuck out among all of the Genesis and others 70s rock albums. I pawed through the boxes of material, and most of them of interest to me were not priced. There were also a lot of jazz albums; mostly with deep collections of artists I was not familiar with. Some of these jazz records were obviously small label pressings and very highly priced, but since I don’t have a deep knowledge of jazz, i reserved judgement. There was obviously a deep Eurythmics collection with a dozen or two 12″ singles in evidence… and not the usual ones, either. I have never owned an LP of “In The Garden” and have a fairly large Eurythmics collection on vinyl, so I was curious, as I pulled about five items in plastic bags with no pricing. I later saw a sign in the area with the records from the dealer saying that these had not yet been priced, but the display near the checkout featured, all sorts of material, priced to sell. I put the records back and continued with my wife through the large facility.
As we got to the exit/checkout, we saw the racks of “Dealer #23” as they were known. Since I saw many OMD/Eurythmics deep collection evidence earlier, I thought it would be worth my while to look at this priced material… at least until I saw the prices that these were going for. Which was a huge shame, since I found not only more OMD records[ priced, this time] but priced stratospherically. Records that might be $5 in amy record store began at $10 and ramped up quickly from there. Worse, there was further evidence of many, many records that I have owned for decades, but rarely see out in the wilds, and never in such numbers. There were probably 40-60 releases of my core collection bands here. Records like…
…and it went by in a blur from there. I already owned all of these records… and thank goodness for that since they ran the gamut from $19-40! There was only one record here that I would have been tempted to own; The first pressing of The Human League’s “The Dignity of Labour” and they wanted $28 for the privilege! I checked, it did have the all-important flexi-disc [depicted above] in the inner sleeve, but for $28?! I didn’t think so.
The more I looked at the records, the more livid I became. Antique malls either feature one of two paradigms when browsing for vinyl. Either there are a lot of records [like in this case] priced to move in bulk, or some dealers have a more finite selection of vinyl, all priced by someone who knows ABSOLUTELY ZERO about what the market will bear for their “rare” Beatles album pressed into the millions 50 years ago. What we had here was the worst of both worlds: a huge selection of incredibly overpriced records. No… the worst of three worlds! Basically we were talking about the contents of several core collections [and I didn’t even mention the many Depeche Mode singles…] from my Record Cell priced to sit there like a vinyl museum for years at a time until the fateful day arrived when a wealthy tourist of the kind that treat Asheville like they own it, stopped by and wouldn’t begin to balk at paying 3x market value for some admittedly fine Post-Punk records that one never saw around this neck of the woods and certainly not in such numbers.
But that’s not how I saw it. For me it was table flipping time!
I can’t begin to explain how infuriating it was to see dozens and dozens of records that had been adored by me since they were released, roughly 35+ years ago in such numbers but priced to sit there. Priced by a madman who would obviously require a mentally ill person with more money than sense to move. I mean, these were esoteric records for this locale. Though this is the second time this year that I’ve seen the 1981 Italian “Terminals” bootleg of Ultravox… what’s up with that? I suspect that if I return in a year or two, they will still be there, unless they cash in their chips and pull out of dealing altogether with their tail between their legs. Which is a shame since this bulk of records could be profitably sold on the web in a Discogs store at the right prices and really move. I know for a fact that there will be Germans who need those early Depeche Mode UK 12″ singles. Heck, even I might have bought “Leave In Silence” had it not been two solid figures.
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