The Grand Mademoiselle – Francis Steegmuller (Doubleday, 1960)

I first noticed this book in a comment to a post on a blog that i can’t seem to find my way back to now… Prior to that i hadn’t seen it on any of the few sites that has information on Warhols dust jackets. I’m no expert on Warhol style and i doubt that i would ever have looked twice at this cover had i ever happened to see it somewhere. Maybe, maybe the fact that it was published on Doubleday would have caught my interest but who knows…

I’ve never seen it on ebay and i think i’ve seen one copy on Etsy but i don’t know what it sold for. So, a few weeks ago i found this on Etsy listed at just $10. At first i thought it was something wrong with it, like a different edition with the same cover or that there had to be something with the condition. But it looked more than OK and i couldn’t find anything else that seemed strange so i picked it up as fast as possible.

I’m not thrilled about the cover though, but that has more to do with the design than with the condition. There are no really big issues, some small smudges and some even smaller tears here and there but overall i’d say it’s in very good shape. I’ve never been a fan of these kinds of designs that combine styles or whatever you want to call it. For example i don’t really like the cover to I’m Still Swinging by The Joe Newman Octet which also has a kind of collage thing going on.

Whatever i think about the cover i was still happy to add it to my collection and to once again be able to find something deep down in the online bargain bin.

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Love is a Pie – Maude Hutchins (New Directions, 1952)

Time to do some more reading, or at least looking at books… This is one of my favourite dust jackets and one that i at first thought would prove to be pretty hard to find. Since i started collecting these i think i’ve seen one copy on ebay but i can’t remember what it sold for. There have also been a few here and there on etsy, amazon and other “book searching sites”. Most of these have been in the range of hundreds of dollars and thus a bit outside my comfort zone.

But a few months ago i saw something on amazon that looked promising. One thing that’s a bit annoying about sites like amazon and abebooks is that you rarely get to see any images of the actual book on the listing so that brings a lot of emailing back and forth before you can actually get to see the item, if you are lucky. I’ve actually had quite a few sellers who for some reason don’t want to send any images, most claim they don’t have the time to do it…

Anyways, this particular seller was very helpful and sent me images right away and it looked good enough for the price they were asking, i think it was $20 or something like that… But then i encountered another potentially big obstacle. For some reason the seller didn’t offer international shipping, i’m guessing it must have something to do with how they registered at amazon once upon a time. No biggie i thought and asked if we could settle the deal outside of amazon but this was not an option for the seller. Once again i’m guessing that like ebay there are strict rules about this and that abuse of the rule can lead to the seller being removed from the marketplace or whatever…

So that forced me to try and find a workaround. I do have a distant relative outside Washington D.C., a cousin to my father or something like that who i’ve visited once a long time ago and who would surely be able to help me should i have asked. However i don’t have an email adress to her and to call or even write her to explain and work this out seemed like it would take to long and i wanted to pick up the book as soon as possible since the price was so good. So then i remembered that at one point in the past i had asked Frank Edwards at warholcovers if i could ship a copy of Both Feet in the Groove via him from a seller on ebay that didn’t offer internationel shipping. As it turned out i didn’t need his help that time since i didn’t win the auction but this time around it seemed like a great solution. As with all members in the “Warhol Covers Club” Frank was very friendly and helpful and told me it was no problem what so ever to ship it to him. Even with the double shipping the total was less than $50 so once again i really consider this a real steal!

Regarding the condition i’d say that it more than met my expectations. There is some general discoloration, a small
piece torn off on the back but all in all nothing major. This is also the first dust jacket that i’ve come across so far that doesn’t credit Warhol with the design in the actual book but New Directions does so on their site and i’ve also read on other places that there is no question whether this is Warhols work or not. There is also a paperback version with the same design (though in black and white) that’s pretty easy to find, there’s a few on ebay right now for example, but for now i’ll stick to hardcovers only.

It’s a great looking dust jacket with a trademark blotted line Warhol design and since i thought i might never find it i was pretty thrilled to actually do so, and offcourse also to get it at such a great price. And thanks again for your help Frank, much appreciated!

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An update on the latest Ratfab record

The latest auction for the Ratfab record ended yesterday and it closed at $709. Surprisingly low in my opinion, the last few listings have all ended up and around the $1000 mark, and this lastest copy was in pretty good condition also.

Also, a nice looking copy of Latin Rhythms by the Boston Pops was listed on ebay yesterday. But with such a crazy starting bid as $1800 it most likely won’t sell and definately not to me, it’s a good looking copy though.

Literature – Arab Spring

Here’s another one that i really like and that i’ve put down on my exceptions list. I first found out about it on Frank Edwards blog in october last year. Initially 500 copies were made – 4 on grey vinyl, 98 on white and 398 on black. I have a black copy and i’m pretty sure it’s one of these first 500 made. I ordered it as fast as i could but i guess i can’t know for sure, i don’t really know how you can tell them apart…

Literature – Arab Spring ( Square of Opposition Records – SofO 41)

For some reason something went wrong with my first order but the guys were very kind and sent me another one free of charge and also included the 7″ single Tie Dye / Apples. The second edition or whatever you want to call it is still available at the bands site here for just $10. I tried to get a copy of the cassette too but i found out about it a bit late and since only 50 of those were made i’ve been unsuccessful so far and i haven’t seen it on ebay yet either.

Frank Edwards did an interview with the band about the cover which can be read here. They are a bit vague (maybe for legal reasons i guess) regarding the basis of the design saying that the “flowers’ shapes might be cut from the original series but they were overlaid onto a new screen of grass and colored by us.”

Whatever the origin of the design it’s a nice looking cover and a fun addition the exceptions, the album is pretty good too.

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Signed books and some cool posters

Just doing some random image searching eventually led me to a site called Fulton Ryder. It appears to be some kind of invitation-only bookstore and gallery established by some artist namned Richard Prince and located in New York. Here’s a pretty good article on it all at a site called Artspace. There’s some cool stuff on the site but i don’t know what half of it is… He does however have some signed Warhol dust jackets – The desire and pursuit of he whole, The Immortal, 3 more novels and The adventures of Maud Noakes. All except 3 more novels are listed at NFS which i’m guessing stands for “not for sale”(?). As always i’m very skeptical of these kinds of alleged signed items but who knows, maybe he has the documentation to back it up. I wouldn’t be able to get any of them even if they were for sale so luckily i don’t have to worry about it to much though.

He also has two cool The Exploding Plastic Inevitable posters, one from some Halloween kind of thing back in 1966 and the other one from a show at the Chrysler Art Museum, also in 1966. The Halloween poster is also listed as NFS and the other one as sold. Interestingly he claims that the photo for the rear of the Velvet Underground & Nico is believed to have been taken at the show at the Chrysler Art Museum. That’s something i hadn’t heard before so if nothing else at least i learned something new today as well.

FIRBANK_Warhol_Signed_Cover-0x500 NEAME,_Warhol_signed-500x0 ROLFE,_Warhol_Signed_Cover-0x500 ROSS,_The_Immortal_Warhol_signed_-500x0 Warhol_Plastic_Halloween_Poster-0x500Exploding_Plastic_Warhol_Chrysler_Art_Poster-0x500

Ratfab on ebay once again!

It’s been a while since i’ve seen a “new” copy of the Ratfab record on ebay. There’s been that crazy french guy asking $2-3000 for a bad looking copy and that other guy with the nice looking copy that keeps listing it with a high starting bid or an equally high “buy it now” price. But yesterday a new copy that i haven’t seen before was listed by a swedish seller. It looks to be in great condition with no real issues besides the normal little ring wear and so on… It’s already at $100 with close to a week left before it ends, it’s going to be interesting to see what the winning bid will be.

About a week ago i got a comment on the very first post in this blog by a guy who’s son had recently (?) found the record among some other things from his school years. Maybe it’s him that’s selling it now i don’t know, if so i wish him luck!

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The thrill of the chase!

So i’m almost at a point where there aren’t many covers left that i have a resonable chance of obtaining. I still have quite a few covers in my collection that i haven’t posted yet, nothing incredibly rare though. There are still a few that i’m hoping to get like A Program of Mexican Music, Both Feet in the Groove, Latin Rhythms by the Boston Pops, The Joke and maybe a few more and at least one or two of these should be possible to find without having to file for bankruptcy.

For example Both Feet in the Groove pops up on ebay quite frequently, i’m just waiting for a nice looking copy that don’t have a crazy asking price to go with it. The Boston Pops EP hasn’t come up much lately but should also be possible to get, i hope. I lost an auction for it to Richard Forrest a while back (before i knew him) which closed at a little over $100 if i remember correctly. The few times i’ve seen it lately it’s been listed on ebay with ridiculous “buy it now” prices so i guess we’ll see what happens…

I’ve always damned myself that i started collecting as late as i did, but the last month or so has proven that there are still some cool items to find even if you are on a budget. Finding the booklet to Giant Size $1,57 Each and some other recent discoveries by members of the “Warhol Cover Collectors Club” has been a real breath of fresh air to my collecting spirit, even though i haven’t found any of these new covers yet it’s great fun to have some new things to look around for.

Not that it’s boring to browse ebay and other sites that have much traffic, i still do it many times every day and still enjoy it. Every morning or whenever i have a look i always think i’m going to be the first and only person in the world to see that rare album with a crazy-low “buy it now” price. The reality though is that it’s incredibly hard to find something unusual and at the same time get it for a good price. I think it’s only happened to me once and that was the “yellow version” of the cover to MTV High Priority that i found for $15-20.

It would be fun to get a new “project” though. Trying to go after one of the more rare covers like i did with the Ratfab record. I just need to figure out which one would be most resonable to go after…

That’s that regarding the album covers. When it comes to the dust jackets i still have more than a few to try and find. And after i got some great information on these from noted collector Guy Minnebach i now know that there are quite a few more than i initially thought. That’s something that just adds to the fun though, especially since many of these still seem to fly a little bit under the radar, at least i think they do. Trying to find these books forces me to look outside of ebay which is also fun and a few days ago i finally made my best find so far on Etsy – The Grand Mademoiselle for just $10! As i’ve posted before i’m still a rookie when it comes to the rareness and value of the dust jackets but for that price this has to have been a real steal! I haven’t recieved it yet though but looking at the images it definately looks good enough for me.

There is something rewarding about chasing after all these great items that’s hard for me to explain. Even if you spend 364 days looking, digging and emailing and coming up with nothing finding that special item on the 365th day still makes it all worth while.

I generally have no problem contacting and “bothering” people with questions etc. and i currently have a few “hooks in the water” that i’m pretty excited about. I don’t want to be to pushy though so it might still take a while but hopefully i’ll have some cool and exciting news for the members of the “Warhol Cover Collectors Club” soon!