Gotten Any Good Trash Records Lately?

I've been buying LPs by mail a bit lately, and have become aware of a phenomenon I think of as the trash record. This is when the seller uses undesirable items from his inventory as packing material, either to save a piece of cardboard or simply to dispose of it. The characteristics of the trash record is that it is something that you would not have the nerve to offer a thrift store, and its condition is You Wouldn't Believe It.

Example one of trash records I have received lately is Mario Lanza singing selections from Sigmund Romberg's The Student Prince, an RCA Victor Red Seal opus from 1960 in New Orthophonic High Fidelity (not Living Stereo), with helpful suggestions on the back cover as to which RCA cabinet phonographs you might wish listen to it on. It had no inner sleeve, in what I take to be the classic trash record manner. In the spirit of adventure I gave it a spin. In the quiet passages it sounds as if my stylus is being driven along a gravel road. When there is music to be heard it is exactly the corn syrup that the kitsch jacket painting promises. Actually the jacket is the most desirable thing about it, possibly rising to the level of camp. You have Lanza looking like a lineman from Nebraska in biergarten populated by figures who'd gone directly from a 1950s Good Housekeeping ad for furniture or appliances to Oktoberfest. By the middle of the second side I recalled the line "Once a philosopher, twice a pervert" and bailed on it.

Second example, Burt Bacharach: Reach Out, would not seem to be without appeal. It is produced and arranged by Bacharach, engineered by Phil Ramone, with liner notes by Derek Taylor. What puts it into the category of trash record category, aside from the condition (acceptable if it were last existing copy of Kind of Blue) is that these are instrumental versions of Bacharach's hits from the movies, which only go to show how integral Hal David was to the appeal of these songs. I guess it was intended as mood music for your Playboy Pad. I would have reached out to Dionne Warwick if I could have.

I took a quick look at eBay and found that copies of both records had sold fairly recently in the mid-$3 range, meaning $8 with shipping, which would indicate that they were not entirely without appeal, though probably not in the condition I received them in.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who has received such lagniappes, and I wonder if anyone would like to give their own examples – or even unexpected finds that came to you in this manner, which I assume must have happened to someone.

You need to pay more attention to whom you buy from, ask questions, and READ the feedback a seller receives.

I sold R2R tapes, and currently sell LP's on eBay. I need space, even more so now. I simply want to get them out of here to people who want them.

I offer unconditional returns or simply give a refund, you keep it. So far, none out of over 90 lps; 2 refunds for over 150 R2R tapes (1 due to PO abuse, 1 a splice by prior owner I missed).

 I have streamlined the process, and yet I often wonder: why bother? The amount of work to select what to sell, photograph, edit the photos, write descriptions, find and post wiki and discogs links, answer messages, buy materials, package and ship compared to the sales price is non-sensical.

I let the market determine value. Some bring decent money, most sell for my starting price of $4.50 + $4.50 shipping. I encourage delayed combined shipping to repeat buyers. After costs and fees, I 'make' $4.00, so all that effort is for $4.00 most often.

I didn't feel competent to professionally grade: mint, very good plus, etc. so I came up with two conditions as described in my general notes.

1. Very Darn Good (no scuffs)
2. Darn Good (minor inaudible scuffs)

Also two categories: ones I clean and listen to prior to sale; and ones I visually inspect, no cleaning or listening by me.

a. ones cleaned and listened to by me, see general notes

b. visually inspected only, different general notes

As for 'extra' stuff in the package, you know it is to prevent movement within the package during transit, i.e. I put peanuts inside reel to reel boxes to prevent the reel movement destroying the box's corners/sides. I put 'extra' layers to prevent movement of LP's during transit. If someone pays a lot, I take the reel out of the box, pack reel and box individually and protectively in a larger, heavier, more costly package.

Donna sells and we receive a lot of purchased items on eBay. Of course 'nice' stuffing is preferable, however, if it is sanitary, and does a good protective job, thank you. Especially for low price items. 

Donna, selling clothes mostly to women, always sends things beautifully wrapped. I have 2 specific size items, so I start with low cost ideally sized packaging and recycled fill, next day shipping with few exceptions.
Yes, I have received LP's I purchased, that had old junk LPs in the box as extra packaging/stiffener. Don't recall any titles, but they were junk for sure....
I bought a MoFi recently that was trash. But it was the "product" not packing. Someone actually uses records as packing material? RU nuts? Cover I could understand but records are heavy and weight costs money. So you're kidding, right? Man April Fool's coming earlier and earlier....

The ONLY problem is initially thinking that the wrong item was sent.   
I got Arc of a Diver mint-.
Cash cow for Stevie.
Elevator music to me.

Yes, records in sleeves as additional packaging. Junk records and sleeves, so cost nothing. Un-saleable otherwise...
Mine was sellable  Maybe a mistake. Who cares? Question is unanswerable as it is.  
Condition OR program?

Okay, so they ship junk. At least it's free junk. I paid $20 for a MoFi Year of the Cat, supposedly NM vinyl but cheap due to the cover being water damaged. When I got it the cover looked like it had soaked a month in a flooded basement, and while the vinyl was clean and scratch-free it was the most warped record I have seen in years. Clamped down to play and sure enough quiet vinyl - but the sound was so muffled, no extension top or bottom, no detail whatsoever, easily a world's record for worst quiet vinyl pressing ever. The seller immediately apologized (he knew it was crap, this thing was so warped my wife spotted it from across the room!) and refunded me. Didn't even want it back. So I sent to Tom Port, they got a kick out of it. A true junk record.
Got a few freebies. One was a Doris Day VG+ Columbia 6eye from the 60s. Sweet record and sounds great. 

As a matter of fact, I did. I bought something 4-5 months ago and they threw in a VG+ Nancy Wilson, "Today- My Way". I know her as a jazz artist but never heard any of her projects and F-R-E-E is F-R-E-E, so I cleaned it up and let it rip. I was pleasantly surprised. I never would have bought it, but I've actually played it a couple of times. It's more 60s pop than jazz. Very polished. Big production. It's really not hard to listen to, and it was F-R-E-E so I'm grateful.
I glued a trash album to the top of a small round table in my music room in lieu of coasters. If I had only had the sense to use a trash Coasters album. 
Bought a sealed dr hook lp off discogs...the seller packed the lp with two additional 45 records containing some of the songs on the lp. The 45’s were mint. I thought that was cool.
I did receive a junk lp of Barbara Streisand used to fill up the package containing the record I actually purchased. That Streisand album went into the trash immediately. 

Example one of trash records I have received lately is Mario Lanza singing selections from Sigmund Romberg's The Student Prince, an RCA Victor Red Seal opus from 1960 in New Orthophonic High Fidelity (not Living Stereo), with helpful suggestions on the back cover as to which RCA cabinet phonographs you might wish l

I have this LP in stereo. Living Stereo RCA Red Seal. Not my taste in music, but a very nicely mastered LP. For its recording quality, it’s very enjoyable!
It's not that I mind particularly, except for one's natural inhibition to throwing a record album away. Those two are still sitting on a shelf awaiting their fate. I'm surprised somebody got so defensive about it.  I just find it amusing. When I'm buying a record I'm looking at the price, and I don't mind about the shipping material. What's truly frustrating is records from overseas with tantalizing prices, but then you get the shipping shock. I think the only other commerce that does something similar is comics. I once bought some books from Heavy Metal and they threw in a couple of issues of the magazine, of which I suppose they had quite a few. And who knows that someone might have a narrow notion of what's undesirable, like the seller who thought, "Who'd want a corny old Doris Day album." I guess my dream now is of my next seller with a packing issue thinks, "Trio Los Panchos? Who the hell are they? I'll never get rid of that . . ."


I agree about peanuts. To ship R2R tapes, 4 peanuts in corners to prevent movement: I found these biodegradable ones from U Haul, actually edible, see funny video