I stopped at an estate sale on my way home from work the other day. I was interested in the $20 Black & Decker leaf blower that was “featured” in the online ad for the sale. You know, a leaf blower, the thing you use to make your problem your neighbour’s problem? Anyway, while I was there I asked about the records that were also listed in the ad. The guy said he had them in the trunk of his car because he was going to take them to a used record store and try and unload them. Obviously I asked to see them and he obliged.
Now, I don’t know what the weather is like in your part of the world, but here–where I live–it’s full-on winter. We’re talking 10 to 15cm of snow and day time highs of -12 Celsius. I’m sure the seller wasn’t in the mood to stand there on the street while some guy thumbed through the entire 200 LP collection in the trunk of his car and I certainly wasn’t in the mood either. I asked him what was in the collection. He said he wasn’t sure but, in his words, “It’s mostly contemporary.” He then added, “I think there are some Beatles records and some Ella Fitzgerald, maybe some Ray Charles…” It wasn’t much to go on, but his asking price wasn’t out of line (not even close) so I loaded the records and my new leaf blower into the backseat of my car and sped off into the snow and ice.
I’ve since had a chance to thumb through the collection in the warmth and comfort of my home and, “He shoots, he scores!” In total I got 197 records and the leaf blower for less than $100. Of those 197 records, 150 of them are German and British imports. Clearly, the woman that owned them had once lived in Germany (I’m guessing between 1958 and 1970) and had acquired a pretty good collection of jazz (especially female vocal) rock and pop. She did, however, write her name on the back of each and every album, but the records themselves are nearly spotless. And aside from her name on the back covers, the jackets are in very good condition. Some of the highlights:
The Beatles – Hard Day’s Night (original German pressing)
The Beatles – The Beatles Greatest (original German pressing)
The Animals – self-titled (German)
At least 5 Ella Fitzgerald (German)
At least 5 Lena Horne (German)
At least 7 Eartha Kitt (German and UK)
4 or 5 Sarah Vaughan (German and US)
Stan Getz, Duane Eddy, June Christy, Vera Lynn, Joan Baez, Gene Pitney, Cliff Richard, Chubby Checker, Della Reese and, of course, the perfunctory ABBA.
Oh, and a leaf blower.
Now, good day and good record hunting.