A long time ago, people could only listen to music with the use of vinyl records. It must come as a surprise to the older folks that the younger generation appreciates these items as well. Generally, a record is more valuable if it is rare. Check out your garage because the records on this list mean good money!
Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin (1969)
In 1969, the band released a self-titled debut album that came with a version of “Dazed and Confused” by Jake Holmes. It had mixed reviews and Rolling Stone even said Robert Plant was “as foppish as Rod Stewart, but nowhere near so exciting.” In 2003, Rolling Stone took it back and called it the 29th greatest album ever! If you have the UK release of it with Led Zeppelin in turquoise, you can get $1k for it.
Miles Davis, Kind of Blue (1959)
Miles Davis is a legend when it comes to jazz music. The most valuable record he released would be Some Kind of Blue since he collaborated with John Coltrane, Jimmy Cobb, Cannonball Adderley, Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers, and Bill Evans for it. An original pressing of the best-selling album is worth $1k!
The Who, The Who Sell Out (1967)
The Who only made one thousand copies of their third album during its first run. If you have a mind copy of the half mono and half stereo with the poster psychedelic butterfly, you can sell it for $1,100.
Nirvana, Bleach (1989)
Nevermind might be their most famous album, but their debut record is the most valuable one. They came out with two versions of this. If you have a copy of the original pressing in white, you are sitting on $2,500. Meanwhile, the 3rd pressing with the 7” blue vinyl and 12” red and white one is worth $1,100.
XTC — Science Friction (1977)
XTC is a British new wave group that released “Science Friction” and “She’s So Square” as a 45 RPM single. According to reports, they only had 50 copies made before releasing it as a 12”. The original 7” one can fetch you $2k. It launched their successful career, after all.
David Bowie — The Prettiest Star (1973)
Do you have a picture-sleeved copy of this 45 RPM single? If so, you are actually sitting on $2k. David Bowie sang this song when he asked for Angela Barnett’s hand! It is interesting to note that his rival Marc Bolan played the guitar for this. Apparently, the two men had a falling out after his wife told Bowie, “Marc is too good for you, to be playing on this record!”
ABBA — Hova’s Vittne (1981)
ABBA distributed a special promotional copy of this single to record companies after printing out 200 copies. This red vinyl came with “Hova’s Vittne” on side A and then “Tivedshambo” on side B. If you happen to own one of these, you can put it up for sale at $3,500.
The Quarrymen — That’ll Be the Day (1981)
If you like the Beatles, you might already know that they first went by “Quarrymen.” At the time, Ringo had yet to join them. “That’ll Be The Day” came with the eponymous Buddy Holly song and an original song titled “In Spite of All the Danger.” It was reprinted by Paul, and you have a fortune if you own one of the 50 copies he made for his friends and family. It might just be the most expensive record in history. Meanwhile, the reprint still translates to a lot of money since you can get $3,500 for it.
Cherry Five — Cherry Five (1975)
Do you like classic horror? If so, you have definitely listened to this musical act, although you might know them as Goblin instead. They made music for Deep Red, Dawn of the Dead, and Suspiria. This first release is super rare, which is why it is worth $3,500.
David Bowie, Diamond Dogs (1974)
Guy Peellaert was the guy who made the Diamond Dogs cover art. He probably had no idea it was going to be a hit. This version of the RCA release was not supposed to come out since the label decided to first airbrush the dog’s private parts before they released it. A couple of copies of the original still got out. In 2003, one of them was sold on eBay for $3,550. We bet it has only gotten more valuable since then.
The Beatles — Abbey Road (1969)
We want you to check if your copy of this Beatles record is worth $4,000. All you need to do is see if it comes with the tag of Parlophone Records and the catalog number PPCS 7088. You might be in luck and have a rare UK export in your possession. Even if you don’t, you have a musical treasure anyway!
Elvis Presley, That’s All Right (1954)
It might come as a shock but “That’s All Right” was recorded when the King was taking a break from recording a different song! He started jamming to Arthur Crudup’s “That’s All Right, Mama” together with his guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black. Sam Phillips heard them and pressed record. On side B is “Blue Moon of Kentucky”. If you have one in perfect condition, it is worth around $4,000.
The Thirteenth Floor Elevators — Reverbaration (Doubt) (1966)
Here is an early recording that comes with “You’re Gonna Miss Me”, “Reveraration (Doubt)”, “Fire Engine”, and “Tried to Hide.” The band is very influential in the psychedelic rock genre. However, the success of the band was cut short. Roky Erickson, the guitarist, had paranoid schizophrenia. After he got his treatment, the band reunited in 2015. He passed away on May 31, 2019.
The Beatles, Please Please Me (1963)
The Beatles had very little time to finish this album. By the time the deadline was closing in on them, they only had four songs! They managed to finish recording seven songs in only 9 hours and 45 minutes, even if John Lennon had a cold. That is why his voice was so raspy in “Twist and Shout.” An original pressing of this album with the band name in gold against black will go for $4,200.
Depeche Mode, Music for the Masses
What makes this specific record so valuable would be the cover art. Its original UK version came with an illustration of a white speaker with soundwaves coming out of it against an orange background. This was later scrapped and used a photo of a desert with a loudspeaker. The label made an error and shipped out a couple of the old records. If one of those made its way to you, it is possible to sell it for $4,600!
Misfits, Legacy of Brutality (1985)
The band only pressed 16 copies of it during its second run. However, singer Glen Danzig quit the band and then pressed, overdubbed, and produced the compilation album. He also overdubbed the instrumental portion to avoid paying his former bandmates royalties. A mint copy is worth $5,000!
Elvis Presley — Speedway (1968)
His acting days were nearly over when Elvis did Speedway. The film flopped with the critics and at the box office. Despite this, this soundtrack album is still worth a fortune. According to rumors, they only made 300 copies of this. If you have a mint recording in the original packaging, it can go for $5k.
Brute Force — King of Fuh (1969)
The Beatles decided to take a chance on this album after EMI and Capitol gave it a pass. It was printed by Apple Recordings despite the obscene lyrics on the album. In 2010, almost five decades later, it finally got a proper release date. If you have an original pressing of this record, you are sitting on $5k!
Elton John — I’ve Been Loving You (1968)
I’ve Been Loving You was the debut record of the Rocket Man. He credited Bernie Taupin for the lyrics, but he later admitted that he composed it. He did this to help his friend with publishing royalties. It is rare, but if you are lucky enough to own a rare Portugal-exclusive copy, you can get $5k for this.
Bruce Springsteen, Spirit in the Night (1973)
You are in luck if you happen to own a rare original pressing of the first single by the Boss. Promotional copies are worth hundreds, but original pressing copies can be worth as much as $5,000. He recorded this for his full-length debut album, Greetings from Ashbury Park. It continues to be a hit among fans.
Century Symphony Orchestra, Waltzes by Johann Strauss, Jr. (1956)
We bet you thought we would not have a classical music entry on the list! Record companies often hire new artists for the album covers of their jazz and classical releases. Back then, a starving artist was hired to work on this album. He was Andy Warhol! There are just 7 copies of it, one of which sold for $5,500.
Max Steiner, The Caine Mutiny
The Caine Mutiny is equal parts dialogue recording and soundtrack. It had to be scrapped when Herman Wouk threatened to sue after learning that they had recordings of his novel on side B. Columbia promised to destroy them all, but some employees took them home. A copy went for $6,700 in 2007.
Sex Pistols, God Save the Queen (1977)
A&M pressed 25,000 copies of this single but destroyed them after figuring out that band members were too much for them. These days, it is believed that only 10 copies survived. If you somehow find a copy with the A&M label in the middle, you can get over $8,600 for it. Whoa.
U2, Pride (In the name of love) (1984)
There are reports that there are 50 copies of this limited Australian version pressed on translucent vinyl. It turns out that Bono was not happy with this song since he wanted to improve the lyrics more. The Edge and Brian Eno convinced him to keep it vague so that non-English fans will still appreciate it. At any rate, you can bring home as much as $9,000 if you want to sell your copy of the 12” single.
Olivia Newton-John and Electric Light Orchestra (ELO), Xanadu (1980)
In the past, Xanadu has been called one of the worst films ever made. The promotional picture disc is one of the most valuable ones in all of music history. Olivia Newton-John was not a fan of this photo of her and asked them to stop the pressing. Only 20 to 30 records survived, and they are each worth $9.1k.
Hank Mobley, Blue Note 1568 (1957)
In 1957, they created 300 to 1,000 copies of Blue Note. There is a tiny variation that drives up the price. They say that they ran out of labels during printing, so a few copies have “47 West 63rd NYC” instead of “47 West 63rd New York 23”. The regular one is worth $11,162, so the rarer version is higher than that.
Robert Johnson, Me and the Devil Blues (1938)
The 78 RPM platter of “Me and the Devil Blues” comes with “Little Queen of Spades” on side B. Did you know that you might have $12k if you kept the original pressing in great condition? Johnson supposedly met the devil at the crossroads of Highway 1 and 8 in Mississippi and sold his soul for guitar skills.
The White Stripes, Lafayette Blues (1998)
They only made 15 copies of Lafayette Blues by The White Stripes. They were all unique since the covers had been hand-painted by Dave Buick of Italy Records. Side B comes with “Sugar Never Tasted So Good.” They made it when the band was starting out. If you paid $6 for it then, it is now worth $12.7k!
Stonewall, Stonewall (1976)
Do not worry if the name does not ring a bell. The ‘70s psychedelic hard rock band did not sign with a record label but got a release when a mob-operated tax scam pressed this record. They wrote off the records as unsold to keep the parent label “Roulette” afloat. A copy of this record is now worth $14k.
Röyksopp, Melody A.M. (2001)
The Norwegian electronic duo debuted with this record. It was a hit both critically and commercially. Röyksopp enjoyed lots of success in the United States after Geico used “Remind Me” for an ad. This pressing with 100 copies has a Banksy stencil rendition and goes for $14,204 these days. Whoa.
The Beatles, Yesterday and Today (1966)
The original cover of the album shows the Beatles wearing butcher’s costumes holding up headless dolls and carrying raw meat on their laps. As you can imagine, people did not like it. Capitol Records paid out $250k to buy the 750,000 copies but failed to get them all. A copy is now worth $15,300.
The Rolling Stones, Street Fighting Man (1968)
This also had a controversial cover. Street Fighting Man originally had a black and white photo of police and a wounded protestor. Right before the release, the Democratic National Convention riot took place. They destroyed these and reprinted a new version. In 2011, one that made it out of there sold for $17k.
The Five Sharps, Stormy Weather (1952)
Pawn Stars fan might already know the deal about this 78 RPM. A collector wanted $25k for it, but Rick thought it was too much for its current state. Still, this was a very rare record. One copy even went for $20k. It is hard to believe that the sales had originally been so bad that the band bought them.
The Velvet Underground, The Velvet Underground & Nico (1967)
The first pressing of the debut record in mono goes for $2,799 on Discogs. This record had a huge influence on the punk rock scene of the ‘70s. It was banned by radio stations and sold poorly. Brian Eno did not mind and said, “Everyone who bought one of those 30,000 copies started a band.” A Canadian collector found a copy with no Warhol artwork, bought it for 75 cents, and sold it for $25,200! Whoa.
Frank Wilson, Do I Love You (Indeed I Do)
Frank Wilson recorded “Sweeter As The Days Go By” and “Do I Love You” but Berry Gordy told him he was a good fit behind the scenes. He wrote songs for the Supremes and Temptations! Gordy destroyed the pressing with the exception of two copies. Simon Soussan discovered it in the Motown vault, bootlegged it, and released it under Eddie Foster. The original records went for $34,000 in 2009.
Bob Dylan, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan (1963)
You have probably noticed the price difference brought about by a small mistake. A few tracks were meant to be replaced before the release, but the pressing plant was not informed and pressed a few copies. You are in luck if your copy’s serial number ends in -1A because it likely comes with four different songs. It is now worth an incredible $35,000.
Tommy Johnson, Alcohol And Jake Blues (1930)
One man bought a very rare 78 RPM record at an estate sale. He then created an eBay auction. The final bid was an astounding $37,100. Some people that there are only 2 copies in the world right now.
Prince, The Black Album
Prince recorded The Black Album, sometimes called “The Funk Bible”. They already pressed 500k copies when he asked for a recall. He said he had an epiphany that it was “evil.” Promo copies were already in circulation, so it was too late. In 1994, he changed his mind and released it as a CD. In 2018, a mint American vinyl version was sold at $42,300. A Canadian pressing, meanwhile, went for $27,500.
Aphex Twin aka Caustic Window, Caustic Window
Bass producer and techno-drummer Richard D. James also went by the name Aphex Twin. However, he recorded this album under “Caustic Window” instead. He made five copies and abandoned them. It got out somehow and went up for sale on Discogs for $13.5k. James, Rephlex Records, and Doctors Without Borders started a Kickstarter campaign for a digital copy. They made $47,000 and split it among them.
The Beatles, The Beatles (aka “The White Album”) (1968)
There have been a lot of Beatles albums here, but this specific one is worth more than all of them combined. It was the very first pressing of The White Album! It had the “A0000001” serial number and was owned by Ringo for a long time. It was auctioned off for $790k, and the proceeds went to Lotus Foundation. Low serial numbers are worth a lot of money too. A0000023 went for $13,750 in 2012!
Steel City Connection, Dansation/Steel City Disco (1978)
This vinyl goes for $885 in this day and age. If you bought one in 1978, you can make a huge profit by selling it to a collector! The songs on the album were big hits, which explains its impressive value.
Thrillers/Delta Cats, Last Dance/Unworthy Baby (1968)
Blue Cat Records released this album in 1968. It now goes for about $1,000 for each copy. Thrillers and Delta Cats are UK groups. However, they also have lots of fans from other countries as well.
Terea, Terea (1977)
This is an eight-song album that you will have a hard time seeing anywhere. On top of that, you will need to pay more than $1,700 if you want to get a copy. The album continues to be a hit in this day and age.
Nirvana, Love Buzz/Big Cheese (1988)
Come on, how can you not have heard of Nirvana? Their albums go for thousands of dollars. To be specific, Love Buzz/Big Cheese is now worth $3,000. It is not going to be easy to find, however.
World’s Experience Orchestra, The Beginning Of A New Birth (1975)
This soul-jazz album only has two songs. However, one is 22 minutes long, while the other runs for 14 minutes. It is the way to go if you want to experience their music. Keep in mind that it is worth $3,500.
Tudor Lodge, Tudor Lodge (1971)
This vinyl has six tracks on each side. It is worth noting that you might be sitting on a treasure chest if you own it! After all, you can sell a copy of this for around $3,540. It’s not cheap, but it is a fair price.
The Smiths, Hand In Glove/Handsome Devil (1984)
While it was not released before 1984, the album was actually recorded in February 1983. The vinyl has been classified into the jangle and British Pop genres. A copy of this album will set you back by $3,500.
Pink Floyd, The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn (1967)
Even if you are not a fan of their music, Pink Floyd continues to be one of the most popular musical acts ever. It took them three months to record it. The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn was released in May 1967.
Nicholas Greenwood, Cold Cuts (1972)
Cold Cuts has 10 songs on it, and all of them have been described as “unpredictable.” This is actually a good thing. The album was a huge hit and became a classic vinyl. It now sells for more than $3,500.
Charlie Parker, Bird Blows The Blues (1949)
This jazz album comes with six songs on side A and then seven songs on side B. The album has a boppy feel that many listeners adored then and adore still! The album now goes for around $3,540.
U2, Three (1979)
U2 recorded this album in August 1979 and then released it only one month after that. Three comes with, well, three songs that run for less than four minutes each. The vinyl is now worth around $3,500!
Sun Ra, Supersonic Jazz (1956)
SuperSonic Jazz is a 12-track album that was released by Saturn Records. It was one of the three albums that Sun Ra had by the ‘50s. It came out on July 12, 1956. Nowadays, you can get a copy for $4,425.
Madonna, Erotica (1992)
This is a 14-track album by Madonna. Even though it is newer than most of the entries on the list, this has not impacted the cost of the vinyl. These days, Madonna continues to perform. This album is simply a classic, however. If you want it, you will need to shell out $4,425 for it.
Michael Garrick Trio, Moonscape (1964)
Released in 1964, Moonscape is a jazz album with six tracks on it. It was not the only album they made, but it is definitely the most popular one they ever made. If you want it for your vinyl collection, you have to pay $5,310 for it.
Genesis, The Silent Sun/That’s Me! (1980)
This is a classic rock album with five songs on side A and six songs on side B. If you wanted our honest opinion, we will tell you that they are some of the greatest hits Genesis ever made. The band is well-known for dabbling in various music styles like art rock, psychedelic rock, and prog rock. If you want to get a copy of this vinyl, it should set you back by around $5,300.