Maybe those people under the impression that traditional record sales are doomed, because of the Internet, are wrong. It seems that what we know about vintage and rare instruments, it also applies for vintage and rare vinyl records. People like the collectability appreciate fine work and the need and desire for personal ownership is still strong amongst music fans. We are proud to introduce you to a new V&R guest blogger from the United Kingdom, Sylvia from vinylrecordsearch.com. She gives us a great guide on how to find Vintage and Rare Vinyl Records.
Finding Vintage and Rare Vinyl Records
Finding vintage and rare vinyl records these days requires some research. Although in the UK there was a remarkable small revival in record stores last year (http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2011/apr/15/independent-record-store-increase), overall record shops have been at a slow decline for the last decade or more. This has meant that record lovers sometimes have to turn to other sources for those vinyl gems. For many collectors, the hunt is as much fun as the find, and finding a rare record in a used book store or thrift and consignment shops can bring great excitement. Alternatively, if you are looking for the true international market price for a record, then it can be better to look online.
What is Considered Vintage Vinyl?
Most records could be considered vintage vinyl, but those from the 50′s or 60′s may be very valuable depending on their condition. When searching for vintage records, music trends such as Big Band, Rock ‘n’ Roll, ‘Bubble Gum Rock,’ Disco, Punk and other genres are a good place to start. Choosing a genre gives you something concrete to search for, and who knows, you may become an expert in a particular niche genre. Alternatively, as a place to start, you could also look for particular artists that have become music icons over the years.
Look for records signed by the original artist, special edition records or limited releases as these records may be very valuable. Lastly, look for records with stereo or mono pressings as these tend to be rarer and thus more sought after.
How to Spot Vintage Vinyl
If searching for vintage vinyl in a book or thrift store, it is important to thoroughly inspect the record to determine its condition. The grading system for records is Mint, Near Mint, Very Good Plus, Very Good, Good or Good Plus, and Poor or Fair.
When inspecting the condition of a record, try to do so in good lighting. Inspect the label, the record (both sides), record sleeve, record jacket, and cover art. You are looking for any imperfections such as scratches, uneven surfaces, warping, tearing, stains, discoloration, imperfect center hole positioning, and any other imperfections that reduce the value.
Keep in mind that records that are still sealed may have been played at one time and then resealed, as this process is fairly simple. Unless you know the person you’re buying the record from, you may want to avoid buying records with a seal, unless you are sure the seal is authentic.
Buying Vinyl Online
One can buy vintage records online through collector’s websites, auction houses, online auction sites, record dealers, and record shops or bookstores with websites. Even though you can’t physically inspect these records, by looking online you will be able to see the true market value of the items. Furthermore, in some cases, you may be able to buy a record, inspect it once it arrives and return it if it doesn’t meet the grade specs provided by the owner.
Having an extensive knowledge of music makes bidding on vintage vinyl online much easier. If you find a record you’re interested in, learn as much as you can about the artist and the record to determine its value.
Visit record dealer websites to buy and sell entire record collections. Websites like The Record Collectors Guild maintain websites listings for record dealers. You can also conduct quick search engine searches to find dealers in your area.
Record Buying Resources
When buying records online, there are plenty of resources to use. Informational websites like http://www.vinylrecordsearch.com/rare-records.htm allow you to search for rare records by artist and title. Using this site, you can find where certain records are sold and the average price. Other helpful websites include Musicstack, Gemm and Vintagevinyl.com. You can also visit online auction websites like Ebay to bid on vintage records.
For many collectors, the Internet has opened up a whole new world for buying and selling vintage records. Instead of traveling from book store to thrift store, you can now buy vintage records from the comfort of your own home.
By Sylvia at http://www.vinylrecordsearch.com/
Note: The views expressed by the author of this blog post do not reflect the views of Vintageandrare.com. Rock On…!
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