Saturday 28 June 2014

My Elusive Derams

Here’s a correspondence I had, or, present tense, I’m having (it’s so fresh) with a fellow hopeless vinyl addict: – 

Morgan to me, ten hours ago. 

Completely out of the blue and amongst a box of proper charity shop dross I picked up a mint hum dono today. Went up to counter hoping that it was part of a larger collection and asked if they had any more. The woman said yes and said she'd only just put the harriott one out. Proudly she took me to the cabinet and showed me the Charlie kunz Lps she'd priced up at £20 each!

So that's one found in 18 years since I last saw you walking out of the withy grove junk shop that time.  Btw the price it sells for is shocking, if I'd known that I might not of put it in my bike bag for the 20 mile journey back home. 

Sent from my iPhone

wildchild to Morgan, ten hours ago. 

Joe Harriott? Which one? You don't say in your excitement. Yes, it hasn't happened to me in the 18 years since bumping into you outside the Withy Grove junk shop, or Paramount by name. What was I clutching? Nucleus, I think. I'd picked up a Mike Westbrook a couple of days earlier. They had a priceless cache of Brit jazz and were only putting them out in dribs and drabs. 

Well done!   

Morgan to me, nine hours ago  

Oh, it was Hum dono joe harriott quartet. Your right, I dont think you had that one, henry lowther and Michael Garrick were the other 2 I remember. 
What was unusual was the quantity they had in paramount. Now you just get the one in a pile of average stuff. On Tuesday I got an Lp by accolade on the same label as joe harriott, and music was ok but it had Christian lyrics. Again all the other records in the box were average to bad. 

Sent from my iPhone

And my reply: – 

Hum Duno, eh? (A quick check of popsike.) That's a cool grand, then. Well done! That beats any individual item I picked up at Paramount, though collectively, as you say, it was a once-in-a-lifetime find. 

I was there when this mouth-watering collection of Brit jazz appeared, scattered in odd piles about the counter (Tubby Hayes' Mexican Green, I remember, was sitting on top). Naturally, the man was surly and unhelpful when I asked, and clammed up: he hadn't bought the collection yet: go away. This put me in a dilemma. I didn't want to alert him to the pricelessness of the haul (in retrospect it was more priceless than we knew), and I didn't have the means to strike any deals. So instead, I just haunted Paramount for the next few weeks, and I was ready to give up, when, like the first swallow of spring, I spotted Mike Westbrook's Marching Song Vol.2 in the Classical section for £2, and I knew my vigil had been rewarded. 

Sporadic raids on Paramount in the next few weeks netted Child Song by Henry Lowther, Belladonna by Nucleus, ah, Labyrinth by Nucleus, Love Songs by Mike Westbrook. Yes, and Once Upon A Time by Alan Skidmore, Flare Up by Harry Beckett and Will Power by Neil Ardley, Stan Tracey, etc. Alice in Jazzland by Stan Tracey was another. Then there was Michael Garrick's Mr Smith's Apocalypse and Troppo by the same. Anything else? I think John Surman by John Surman. Oh, and let’s not forget Integration by Amancio D’Silva (or Etudes by John Mayer or Synthesis by Laurie Johnson).  

Tubby Hayes and Joe Harriott (he almost certainly would have been there) eluded me, alas. 

Yes, it makes one sigh for the golden age of record collecting, and the splendour of holy vinyl we've lost, found, and mislaid again along the way. 

Give not that which is Holy unto the dogs; neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet... 

Matt. 7:6 (talking about Christian lyrics, Jonathan) 

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