The continuing saga…
I have a lot of records…
Why do I have so many records?
When I was a kid I was fascinated by records. My mom had records. They even had my initials on them – JB. It turns out back in the 60s you would put initials on your records so you could get them back when you went to parties. My father’s initials were also JB. I love my Peter, Paul, and Mary records! In fact I listed to them today!
As I got older I would purchase more here and there: Half-Price Books, flea markets, garage sales etc.
One day I got a phone call. A friend’s mother was going into a nursing home, would I want her records. Sure! A strange variety of 78s, 33s, and 45s.
I love my singles collection. At one point I had this giant trough of 45s. Like 10 feet. I would get a lot of those at the Goodwill or other thrift stores.
One time I was at a used appliance store and there was a box of records sitting in the corner. The guy sold me the entire box for $20. It was all Kiss, Megadeath, and Led Zeppelin!
Then one day the weirdest thing happened. I was at the local library’s annual book sale and flipping through their records. $1 each. I told them that $1 each is OK but nothing beats the thrill of buying a box for $20 and coming home to some real treasures. The lady asked for my name and phone number. Weird. The next day she called and told me that the deal was acceptable. What deal? $20. $20 for what? For everything. It turns out that the library was no longer lending records and for $20 the entire collection was mine. I grabbed a buddy and a truck and suddenly I was buried in records.
Then another friend’s mother went into a nursing home, then another friend’s father died. And sight unseen people are just dropping off these collections at my house.
6 months later the library called and told me to come with another $20. I though I had all your records. They get donations, and after their semi-annual sale the rest was mine. It was a LOT! 6 months later they called again. Only a car-full but they didn’t want the $20. 6 months later I told them to stop!
During this time I’ve moved twice. And it was up to over 80 crates of records. My basement is all Kallax furniture but I have NO idea what I have.
I promised myself – no more records until they got sorted.
Well… I was at a friends house. Little old lady. She wanted some of her records digitized. In the collection I saw some real treasures. We agreed on a trade. I got the collection as long as I digitized from her list. Deal. But no more! I’ve been good since! Really!
And I mean it! During this time I got rid of almost all of my audio cassettes – I had over 700, video cassettes – I had over 1,000 – 8-track tapes – I had over 600. I kept a few here and there but I’ve been making room.
So where am I at now?
I go cube by cube sorting out the ones I know I don’t want. For sure – not going to listen to. I am keeping my eye out for anything of value though. If I suspect it could be worth something I do a quick eBay check or Discogs. If one is selling for $20 or less – it goes in the discard pile. Right now I am only culling, if I second guess a record – I keep it. This is only the for sure NOs!
My niece Olivia has become a record collector, which is good because I am sure once I weed out the bad stuff there will be dupes of a LOT of good stuff and some stuff that she will want but I won’t – like maybe all that Megadeath.
The collection is VAST. I know I have a bunch of Yiddish humor records from the 40s. And tons of 78s. The 78s are crazy old.
A couple of years ago I had a flood. The records were fine but the mediation crew that packed them up and moved them so that the room could be re-done did a terrible job. Smashed a bunch of records. They ended up paying me like $800 for some old 78s. I will do the 78s last because their might be some value there.
My friends all want to come over and see the collection but it isn’t a collection yet – it’s a warehouse.
I did find ONE valuable record so far. The Offs First Record has a nice street value so I put it up on eBay. I also found a Star Wars book and record I’m selling on Facebook Marketplace. I really don’t want to be in the record selling business. I want to listen and enjoy!
Oh, and I’m making a pile of all the Disney records. They aren’t worth a lot but someone will want the whole lot I am sure.
So originally I was going to sell them locally in batches on Facebook marketplace or to friends. I’m not interested in cleaning, grading, mailing, and waiting to get rid of these records. But no one was interested.
Then my friend Andrew called to make me a deal. He will go though the discards and take what he wants for free – but then he will load my truck, follow me to half price books, and unload. He also reminded me that between the broken 78s and the eBay record I’ve already made $1,000 off the collection so anything else is really gravy. And he’s right!
Half price books gave me $1.10 for a truck load. I’m thrilled. And Andrew for some great records. Can’t wait to do it again! Second load was work 25 cents – I think it’s because they hate me.