On this day June 23, 1972 Smokey Robinson appears in concert for the last time with his group, the Miracles with whom he has 27 top-40 hits. Their 1961 single, “Broken Hearted,” is now worth up to $200.00 with picture sleeve. On this day in 1967 Aretha Franklin records “Chain of Fools,” just one of her 45 top-40 hits. Her first single, “Never Grow Old,” was released in 1956 both as a 45 and a 78. Either can also get you $200.00 today.
Sarah Vaughan’s career took off in 1943 when the Apollo Theater asked her to be the opening act for the legendary Ella Fitzgerald. It was Dave Garroway, one of the early hosts of the “Today” show that gave her the nickname “The Divine One.” Other nicknames were “Sassy” and “Sailor” because she could embarrass a longshoreman with her salty language. One of her biggest hits came in 1959 with “Broken Hearted Melody,” now worth up to $20.00. Her 1954 10-inch album “Images” can get you $400.00 today.
The most successful album for Van Halen is “1984.” The single “Jump” from the album is Van Halen’s only # 1 hit. With over 12 million copies sold, the value for “1984” is no more than $10.00 but “Jump” was also included on a lesser-known Van Halen album called “Summer Time.” Released on Vampire Records out of Canada in 1984, it also contains “Hot for Teacher.” The “Summer Time” album can get you $300.00 today.
Rolling Stone magazine includes “For Your Precious Love” by Jerry Butler and the Impressions on its list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. First issued in 1958, the value all depends on the record label. On Abner or Falcon records the single can get you $50.00, but an original copy of “For Your Precious Love” on Vee Jay records is really precious at up to $2,500.00 today.
In 2010, as part of what has become known as Record Store Day, Universal/Island records released a 12 inch EP by U2 called “Wide Awake in Europe.” The record includes “Mercy,” “Moment of Surrender,” and “I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight.” 5,000 copies were issued and each can sell up to $125.00 today. In 2015 IGA records released “Songs of Innocence” by U2 as a Record Store Day exclusive. A copy can now sell for $800.00.
The Contours is a group who had the same hit on the Billboard Hot 100 in two different years. In 1962, recording for Motown’s Gordy record label, they reached #3 with “Do You Love Me.” That 45 is now worth up to $40.00. They hit again with “Do You Love Me” in 1988 thanks to the song being featured in the popular movie “Dirty Dancing.” But the Contours’ first single “Whole Lotta Woman,” released on Motown records in 1961, is worth up to $500.00 today.
Conway Twitty had two successful careers, the first in Rock N Roll and then Country. His first giant hit came in 1958 with “Its Only Make Believe.” It was #1 in the U.S. and #1 in twenty one other countries. In 1959 Conway connected with another giant hit called “Lonely Blue Boy.” His popularity with the Rock N Roll audience led to appearances in “College Confidential,” “Sex Kittens Go to College,” and “Platinum High School.” The “Lonely Blue Boy” 45 is worth up to $25.00. The “Lonely Blue Boy” album, released on M-G-M records in 1960, can sell for $100.00 today.
On this day June 16, 1967 the first Monterey Pop Festival begins with numerous rock legends like Jefferson Airplane and the Mamas and Papas. Papa John Phillips would later write a song inspired by this legendary concert. It wouldn’t be a hit for him but it would be for one-hit-wonder Scott McKenzie with the classic “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Some Flowers in Your Hair).” The 45 is not a big collectible at up to $10.00. However, Jefferson Airplane is another story. Their album “Jefferson Airplane Takes Off” released by RCA in 1967 can sell for $50.00 if the album has 11 tracks. BUT, if the album has 12 tracks the value jumps up to $500.00 in mono and $700.00 in stereo.
Patsy Cline was as important to Country music as any female star in history. Her career all began with a song she didn’t want to record, “Walkin’ After Midnight.” The tune was originally offered to Kay Starr who was one of the hottest girl singers of the day but she turned it down. After Patsy Cline sang the song on “Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts” TV show the record took off like a rocket and a legendary Country star was born. The original 45, released on Decca records in 1957, is now worth up to $150.00 with its picture sleeve.
“Surfin’ Bird” by the Trashmen, despite the refusal of many radio stations to play it, climbed all the way to #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1963. It’s one of those songs you either love or hate. Released on Garrett records, the single is worth up to $25.00. The Trashmen never found big success again but their 45 of “Whoa Dad” with picture sleeve, released on Garrett records in 1964, is worth up to $250.00 today.