A few weeks back, I posed a question about whether The Smiths should make a reappearance on TVV after more than five years.  I was trying to read the room, as I felt I couldn’t really look at the musical happenings of 1983 without bringing the band into consideration.

A lively debate/discussion ensued via the comments section, with diverse opinions on offer. Many of those who contributed have been long time supporters of the blog, either through regular comments or guest postings, and it soon became apparent that whatever I decided upon, I was going to disappoint a few close friends.

Overall, it felt that most who engaged with the post did think it was possible to detach the art from the artist, with a number of folk making the point that The Smiths were much more than just one member. This, from my dear friend flimflanfan, really hit home:-

“The Smiths were a big part of 1983. I think you should consider their inclusion. That would be an accurate account of then – not now. The achievements of The Smiths other band members deserve to be spoken about without the shadow of the singer’s appalling beliefs. I still can’t listen to The Smiths, but hope in time that I might be able to. The singer’s songs? No. They won’t be listened to again.”

So, when the time comes, the 1983 series will feature The Smiths.

When I came up with the idea of the series looking at the changing cost of vinyl, I wondered whether the change of attitude from many towards The Smiths had resulted in any downward spiral in the prices being asked.

Given that I bought just about everything back in the 80s, I’ve never had to dip into the Discogs market other than for one 12″ single, which I failed to get at the time of release, but much later picked up a second hand copy (in near mint condition for the vinyl and the sleeve) for £6.99, plus P&P, in March 2008:-

mp3: The Smiths – Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me

The asking price for the version I have, and rated as near mint/near mint, is in the vicinity of £50.  Copies with sleeve wear and a vinyl assessment of Very Good+, are about half that price.

The increase in cost, in fifteen years, is over 600%, all of which can be attributed to the vinyl revival that was only just beginning to take shape back in 2008.

It’s frightening.

The two b-sides were taken from a session recorded for the John Peel Show in August 1984.

mp3 : The Smiths – Nowhere Fast (Peel Session)
mp3 : The Smiths – Rusholme Ruffians (Peel Session)

It was genuinely strange to listen to these three songs again after so long.  But it’ll still be the very occasional dip into the band’s back catalogue, rather than their singles or albums being on heavy rotation here in Villain Towers.

Oh, and the comeback just happens to be at the same time as I happen to be in Manchester for a few days…..


6 thoughts on “THE INSANE COST OF SECOND HAND VINYL? (Issue #3)

  1. When I considered selling my Smiths full catalogue on vinyl I dipped into Discogs. Crikey! What welcome, eye-watering prices. Imports aside, as I looked through my vinyl-mine and took out the included posters, in mint condition, from a few 12″s I knew I wasn’t ready to sell. There’s still too much emotion, too much joy and happiness contained in those throw away bits of plastic for me to consider letting go – for now, anyway.

    If/when I ever do listen to The Smiths again I’m fully prepared to be awash with tears if I listen to Last Night…

    The Smiths is the sum of it’s parts. I for one am pleased that the other three members are being acknowledged under the collective name, The Smiths.

    On a more practical note… those that own a copy now know how to make a quick £50.

  2. ” There’s still too much emotion, too much joy and happiness contained in those throw away bits of plastic”.

    …..Ay there’s the rub (to selling vinyl). How can you put a value on that kind of feeling? Simple, powerful connection to memories and feelings through a piece of plastic or a record cover.

    Another way of making the decision is to ask the question (courtesy of Marie ‘declutterer queen’ Kondo) ‘does it spark joy?’.

    For vinyl lovers, joy is one dimension, but I believe it is can be deeper and more complex. For example when I too looked at my Smiths vinyl in 2021, and the surprising prices there was one album I thought I would never play again as I never really enjoyed it despite massive critical acclaim. Said item is ‘Meat is Murder’. (Sorry MiM lovers!). However I quickly moved away from the idea of selling it because it feels part of a whole body of work and it would be like losing an arm or a leg.

    Anyway, I played ‘Strangeways……’ (my favourite albums by the Smiths) and all was well……

  3. You must return to The Smiths. Some of us have never left. As for “the shadow of the singer’s appalling beliefs.” bit… I couldn’t help but notice this was someone’s comment which you deemed fit to post in your post. I have never manged to see or read any such thing spoken or written by Morrissey which shows him to have ‘appalling beliefs’. I hold these “appalling beliefs” to be entirely fictional and any allegation that Morrissey has caused any offence is a creation of keyboard warriors and FB Opinioneers who cannot be bothered to hear, read or see. The same kind of wilful idiots who would descibe The Smiths music as “depressing” without ever taking the time to listen. The kind of people who could suck the joy out of a room with a quick FB meme which they found on an abandonded Reddit post.

    Could you explain exactly what these ‘appalling beliefs’ are and point us to where we might read them and decide for ourselves? Otherwise stop saying they exist… back it up with some quotes from Stephen Patrick Morrissey. Morrissey has taken the unusual step to write a piece on these pathetic attacks on his website recently. It speaks volumes.

  4. I would urge anyone unaware of the singers appalling beliefs to read the Der Spiegel article in which he clearly suggests – in his own words- that victims of sexual violence knew what they were letting themselves in for. The singer baited Der Spiegel to publish the full transcript claiming he had been maliciously edited and would take legal action. Der Spiegel published the full transcript – confirming the singer had not been maliciously edited. The singer took no legal action against Der Spiegel. This is to say nothing of his dubious political associations or comments.

    I made my decision to walk away from someone I had ‘loved’ since 1983. I did that through informed choice based on what the singer himself had stated over varying articles of that time. I did not make my decision lightly nor do I appreciate any attempt to ridicule my decision. Each of us can hold a view – mine remains as outlined. I won’t engage further in they said this/they said that. I’ve involved myself in that process for the best part of a decade – defending the singer. He is what he is and is no longer part of my life – although at times likes these he twitches the net curtain.

  5. OK, I’ll expand…

    No. 1. Supporting For Britain, an actual far right fascist party.
    No. 2. ‘I mean, look at the shocking treatment of Tommy Robinson’. Tommy Robinson= far right thug/ Islamophobe
    No. 3 Lyrics of Bengali In Platforms.
    No. 4. Comments about immigration, ‘floodgates’, not hearing ‘a British accent in Knightsbridge’ etc
    No. 5 His comments on Kevin Spacey and his sexual advances to a 14 year old boy where he sided with Spacey. Similar re: Harvey Weinstein.
    No. 6 He criticises many politicians but often seems to particularly go for politicians of colour- Sadiq Khan and Dianne Abbot.

    There’s more but I think we have enough to be going on with.

    I loved The Smiths for what it’s worth.

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