The big issue with huge "collections" of mostly used records owned by these long-time stores is that 
90+% of the gross weight is either worthless or near-worthless. The smart few of these guys put that 
90% of gross weight at the curb and let the accumulators vaccuum it all up. Then they carefully sell 
off the valuable 10%, either to long-time collector/customers or via a wider marketplace like eBay. 
If a person owns a record store that long and doesn't know in his heart of hearts that 90% of the 
gross weight is worthless, he's first of all deluding himself and second of all it's a miracle he's 
stayed in business long enough to become an "institution."

By its very nature, a used record store must be an accumulator. The business model works if you 
continuously have a nice valuable 10% moving at high prices and if your rent is cheap enough to use 
the other 90% to attract accumulator traffic and to look like you have a vast inventory of 

Don't get me wrong, the 90% has some value to someone. Just not any of it monetary. I always troll 
the dollar bins and free bins at used record stores, mainly to find better-condition covers to 
records I have where the vinyl is great but the cover is shot (and I probably therefore got it for a 
huge discount). There was a decorating fad a while back, popular enough to make it to the NYT style 
section, that seriously crimped this MO. The kids were into buying up dollar-bin LPs to frame the 
cover and hang them on the wall. Suddenly, competition for my good-condition dollar covers and 
novelty covers! The fad seems to have passed, based on recent success in the dollar bins.

-- Tom Fine

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Aaron Levinson" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, August 18, 2010 11:05 AM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] music man murray record collection & Murray Gershenz, music collector 
extraordinaire, is parting with his entire music library.

> There is a reason why it is such a massive collection in the first place-no one wants it for a 
> patently ridiculous price! Does this all seem vaguely reminiscent to a guy with a warehouse in 
> Pittsburgh?...Someone needs to tell these guys that we are in the greatest economic downturn since 
> Black Friday and that whatever you thought you had and how much you (wildly) imagined it was 
> worth, things ain't what they used to be.
> AA
> On 8/18/10 1:42 AM, Michael Biel wrote:
>>  It is interesting that both these postings and the article and TV piece all refer to the stock 
>> of a retail store as a "collection".  Over on the 78-L there have been comments from several who 
>> have been customers and know this shop well that the prices he asked were too high, and even the 
>> reduced price he is now asking for the whole stock is still too high considering that it has been 
>> pawed thru by thousands of collectors for 50 years.  I suppose that if your prices are too high, 
>> a store's "stock" becomes a "collection"!
>> On 8/16/2010 7:22 PM, Rod Smear wrote:
>>>> This came up in today's LA times article about a local gentleman here who is looking to unload 
>>>> his masssive collection. Apparently from edison cylinders to LP's. Don't know if anyone might 
>>>> be interested or know someone or organization willing to buy collection. Sorry i don't have a 
>>>> link. I guess google LA times Music Man Murray records?  Rod Smear
>> Here's the link.
>>> From: Gerald Segall<[log in to unmask]>
>>> Murray Gershenz, (aka "Music Man Murray"), after having amassed a lifetime of rare and 
>>> collectible 45s,  78s, vinyl LPs, and CDs, is sadly selling his entire collection's contents, 
>>> for any prospective buyer interested in these hard-to-find musical treasures. As news anchor 
>>> Glen Walker of KTLA News remarks, "...building a music library that attracted those who made the 
>>> music." If only a public, college, or university library could acquire such a precious 
>>> collection for the benefit of use by all music lovers, patrons, music students, music scholars, 
>>> and historians.