Vinyls have become more fashionable over the last few years. With a resurgence in popularity, this has also resulted in rare vinyls now increasing in price. So read about the most valuable and rare vinyls so far.
The Beatles, Yesterday and Today (1966)
One of the most recognized album covers in the history of music, the Beatles’ famous Butcher cover for the American edition of Yesterday and Today is still talked about to this day. Several hundred copies of the original are around, as well as several thousand copies of the second-state covers (with a new cover stuck over the original one). The condition of the different versions (original, with the sticker image, and with the sticker peeled off) can fetch various prices, one well-heeled collector shelled out $125,000 for an ultra-rare sealed “Livingston” Butcher copy!
Prince, The Black Album (1987)
Only handful of promotional copies of this album have been released, at the request of Prince, who asked Universal to withdraw 500,000 copies from the market. The last copy sold went for $27,500
The Beatles, White Album (1968)
While any original copy of this album is extremely rare, the 1968 mono version of the Beatles’ White Album, with just five serial numbers in circulation, is the rarest of all. The latest to sell, with the serial number 0000005, sold for $25,000, while a copy with the serial number A0000023 (from a limited series given only to Apple Corps employees and the band’s entourage) sold for US$13,750.
The Rolling Stones, Street Fighting Man/No Expectations(1968)
Record executives had cold feet about releasing this Rolling Stones 7” with a sleeve depicting police brutality. Fearing that the British band would be associated with the riots surrounding the August 1 968 Democratic National Convention in the United States, the record company ordered the copies to be destroyed. Fewer than 20 copies remain today and are worth about $17,000 apiece.
Bob Dylan, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan (1963)
The first pressing of this Bob Dylan album contains four tracks that weren’t meant to be heard by the public. Although Columbia Records recalled the records with the “wrong” tracks, a few made it into circulation. The mono copy is estimated to be worth $15,000, while the stereo copy is worth at least double that as there are only two known copies!
Max Steiner, The Caine Mutiny (1954)
Considered one of the most valuable vinyl soundtracks in the world, this vinyl was pulled from release by Columbia Records due to a complaint by the author Herman Wouk, whose novel the screenplay was based on. Although a dozen copies were ever released, the value of this vinyl could vary, but the latest copy sold for $6,000.
Olivia Newton John, Xanadu (1980)
Released by MCA as a promotional picture disc of Olivia Newton-John with the Electric Light Orchestra, this will set you back $5,400 since very few copies exist and thus considered one of the rarest picture discs in the world
The Beatles, Please Please Me (1963)
First editions by one of the top bands in contemporary music are worth a lot of money. A mint copy of the Beatles’ Please Please Me, with the yellow and black Parlophone label in stereo, is worth $3,900.
David Bowie, Diamond Dogs (1974)
The original sleeve of David Bowie’s Diamond Dogs, designed by Guy Peellaert, showed a dog’s genitals. Fearing a scandal, record executives had the offending area airbrushed out. A few employees, however, held on to their original copies. The latest to be sold fetched $3,550, but prices could go even higher following Bowie’s death in 2016.
Brute Force, King of Fuh/Nobody Knows (1969)
This is Apple Records’ rarest single. Only 1,000 copies were released, and it was banned from radio play for its obscene lyrics. Anyone with a copy of Brute Force’s King of Fuh can expect to $3,200 for it, according to Sotheby’s.
Kate Bush, The Sensual World (2019)
This 1989 album was re-issued in 2019 to raise money for UNICEF, and only 50 copies were released, 49 of which were raffled off. The lucky few to win a copy could make a tidy profit. Tickets cost a mere £5 ($6.50), and today a copy is worth $3,100!
Queen, Bohemian Rhapsody/I’m In Love With My Car (1978)
This blue 7″ with a purple and gold sleeve has an amusing story behind it. In 1978, EMI Records held a dinner party to celebrate the label wiinning an award from the Queen of England. Since the band Queen had been a major contributor to this success and its name provided a fun play on words, EMI released a limited run of 200 promo copies of the single, which are now worth $2,500 in the original sleeve.
Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin (1969)
Led Zeppelin’s 1969 album from its first UK press run of fewer than 2,000 copies, are worth a pretty penny, fetching nearly $2,000 for a mint copy. To spot such a rare copy look for the band’s name and the Atlantic Records label in turquoise blue, not bright orange.
Elvis Presley, That’s All Right/Blue Moon Kentucky (1954)
A copy of the single is currently up for auction for anyone who’s willing to bid more than $1,700.
Nirvana, Bleach (1989)
The first album on a now-legendary label Sub Pop will set you back $900
So why not play your rare, classic or latest vinyls on our Steepletone Chicago 6 in 1 music centre, which will also allow you to record from vinyl to cassette, MP3 or SD Card.