UK Charity (Thrift) Shop CD Hunting

Discussion in 'Marketplace Discussions' started by MC Rag, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    I enviously read posts about amazing finds in US Thrift Shops, people finding 10 Target cds for a couple of dollars each in one shop. I wonder why I hardly ever find any in the UK? Did these not sell over here back in the early 80s? In several years of searching say about 50 charity shops in the South West (between Bristol and Gloucester) I think I've found 3 Targets (all Phil Collins), and no other serious discs of interest like Red Polydors, West German Blue Faces, Blue Swirls, etc. Does anyone else in the UK come across these kind of things now and then?

    That said I do find reasonable stuff from time to time, here's the cream of 2 years foraging:

    Misty in Roots - Live at the CounterEurovision
    Miles Davis - Kind of Blue (Gold Mastersound)
    Led Zeppelin - IV (Gold)
    Phil Collins - 3 targets
    Philip Glass - Einstein on the Beach (3cd version)
    Various early Japanese classical cds
    Various 80s pop compilations (these actually sell quite well on ebay, it's not really my thing)
  2. erasmus

    erasmus Forum Resident

    No - most have stuff from 90's onwards and an uncanny amount Michael Bolton. Finding anything released in the 80's is always a rarity.

    Did the UK get many targets?

    That said found many interesting things including:

    Coil CD singles
    Dark Side of the Moon (UK Japan non TO).
    New York Dolls
    Here Comes the Warm Jets
    Double Fantasy (1986 release)
    Various Fall albums
    Abba The Singles - The First Ten Years (1984)
    Strange Fascination 2xcd Bowie Bootleg
    13605, seastman and deredordica like this.
  3. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Some nice finds there, out of interest where are you based Erasmus? I'd like to know too whether Targets and the like were sold in the UK in the 80s.
  4. EwaWoowa

    EwaWoowa Sexiest Monkey Ever...

    In the charity shop I volunteered in, we had two expert volunteers that went thru every item donated, investigated & identified its true value, and also put it on sale on eBay for that value (if the value was above approx £20).

    To be blunt, the aim of the charity shop is to make as much money as possible for the charity, and that means not putting items out (by mistake) at a bargain price. It means charging the market value for the item.

    The charity is a charity, but the charity shop is a business...
  5. Brother_Rael

    Brother_Rael Senior Member

    It's really more a case of finding the good ones and knowing what's available locally. That's maybe difficult when you're not familiar with an area.

    Oxfam has a number of music only shops, luckily there's one in Edinburgh's Stockbridge area and Shelter a few doors along (also fortunately!) although not a music shop, has an excellent vinyl and CD range. Most of my purchases come from those two these days. Plenty of early CD editions too. Some are low prices but others reflect true market value, which is fine by me.

    I'd expect other cities to be the same but they all vary.
    Shak Cohen likes this.
  6. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    I don't think that happens in most charity shops around me. Oxfam do seem to have some idea of what they're selling, the others mostly not, especially classical.
    bmoc79 likes this.
  7. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    I don't find many 80s cds in Bristol, certainly not 86 and earlier. Anyone do much charity searching in London, what's it like there?
  8. erasmus

    erasmus Forum Resident

    I'm in Norwich and have a stupid number of charity shops but often go to the outskirts and market towns as well.

    We have three Oxfams but the specialist book and music one is a bit of rip off. Anything remotely obscure has a ridiculous high ticket price and often equate to the highest prices on discogs. Not sure why anybody buys them.
    SteveS1 and Andrew J like this.
  9. Dave S

    Dave S Forum Resident

    They were sold in the UK. Loads of them. I've found 4 locally in the run up to Christmas: Bilitis black on silver stock; Al Jarreau High Crime purple on teal green; Elaine Paige Stages purple on teal green; ZZ Top Eliminator red on silver. The Al Jarreau and Elaine Paige were a bit scratchy, but they were rare PDO versions (the Al Jarreau one was previously unknown). The store where I bought the Al Jarreau disc had loads of 80s pressings. I think someone must have donated their whole collection. I also found a WG Depeche Mode Intercord blue stripe disc recently.
    I found this disc two summers ago in Cornwall. I think the key is to visit often. Sometimes you go weeks without finding anything.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2016
  10. Dave S

    Dave S Forum Resident

    Rather strangely, I found two early RCA Japan for US CDs recently (Kenny Rogers and the Eurythmics) and an early US DADC pressing of Nat King Cole's Love Is the Thing (And More).

    Plenty of weird and wonderful releases in my area.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2016
    BurntOutBassment and MC Rag like this.
  11. chrism1971

    chrism1971 Forum Resident

    Glos, UK
    So you're the guy who's nicking all the good stuff round here!

    My experience is that charity shop CDs (in fact, almost any CDs except my own) tend to be scratched, scuffed and with dodgy cases.

    All the Oxfam shops round here are also chronic at overpricing LPs too - they take the book value from Record Collector and stick it on regardless of street sales value or condition.

    That said, I've found a few odd things. Record fairs or a good shop are a lot more worthwhile though.
    CHALKERS and sunking101 like this.
  12. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Good to know, I guess I'll get lucky sometime. I've never seen a red polydor in the wild!
    OptimisticGoat likes this.
  13. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    :) I haven't made it up to Gloucester yet, only as far as Stroud (I'm in Thornbury). Do you ever go to Cheltenham? I find those more gentrified type of towns have particularly good classical cd selections. Marlborough was great when I passed through last summer.
  14. Paul Saldana

    Paul Saldana jazz vinyl addict

    I'm in the States and not in the UK but I hit a lot of thrift stores.

    Before I bought CDs in the early 1990s I was briefly a record store clerk. I've noticed a few trends over the years:

    You only see Eighties CDs post 2000 when an entire collection got dumped. Rarely is it "just one".

    Outside of this you see one or two titles repeatedly, it's bands like Bruce Hornsby or the Judds who sold in the tens of millions in 1985-92 and are virtually unknown today.

    There's a lot of theft, it's far more common to see just the rare cd cover with no disc in it (I found the DCC Roy Orbison cover, disc long gone, one sad day).

    It might be a population thing: the US has 48 continental states and close to 300 million residents. Compare that to the UK.

    The introductory (1983-92) price of a cd here was $16 for a domestic and $21-24 for an import, like the "black triangle" Abbey Road. By 1992 some large drugstore and dept store chains discounted common domestic CDs to $12, which caused sales to explode. I'll bet CDs were more expensive in the UK before 1992.
    tumpux and Tjazz like this.
  15. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Think you're right on most counts, various of the charity shops I go to tape the cds closed (do people really steal a cd only?), so I've mastered the art of opening them quickly from the hinge side to have a look at the disc. I started buying CDs in the late 80s and from what I remember most of what I bought in the UK was in the £11.99 - £13.99 range so probably about $22-$26 at the exchange rate of the time. In Hong Kong where my parents lived in the 80s and I spent about 4 months per year cds were much cheaper at about £7.70 (US$14.5) I also saw a lot of Japanese Black Triangles (sealed) around but they were a little more expensive so I thought why should I buy these, I had no idea of different masterings back then.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2016
    Assassin Yassassin likes this.
  16. uncarvedbloke

    uncarvedbloke Forum Resident

    UK - SOT
    I volunteered for 2 charities over the last 5 years pricing media donations, and generally found it a very frustrating experience, most charities fail to appreciate the potential value in such items - especially if you are not in a city. It can also be difficult to display rare/valuable items as they are often just placed on the shelf with the usual stock, leaving them open to theft and 'repricing'. In the end you just get what you get sadly.
    Much as I agree that Oxfam are generally over priced on such items the fact is that they do sell regularly - so good luck to them I say. I have a lot of fun searching round locally for music that I missed first time around, having bought about 350 CDs that I felt cost too much when first released - over the last year and a half.
    It was sad to see a collection of over 1,000 CDs in one shop last year, all mint condition - each numbered carefully with tiny stickers, donated by an individuals family following his death. He had been a true music lover.
  17. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    True but probably going to be more common in coming years as those in their 40s/50s who bought 1st gen cd players in 82/83/84 pass on and their kids/grandkids have no interest in physical media. I found a collection a little while ago that had all been labelled up with braille stickers, those were really a bugger to remove.
  18. Dave S

    Dave S Forum Resident

    I think it would be sadder if they went straight into the trash. At least they can be recycled into a new collection.
  19. Dave S

    Dave S Forum Resident

    Yes, people steal the CD and leave the case. But sometimes CDs are donated without the CD and they get put on the shelf by mistake. I always unpeel the sellotape to check the disc. I only really check the ones that interest me. I came across a copy of Cyndi Lauper's She's So Unusual (Japan for Europe). The original price sticker was still attached to the case: £11.99 at Our Price, with the letters RP (I don't know what RP stands for - Retail Price?).
    AlmostHeavenWV likes this.
  20. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

  21. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Just found my first "Blue Face" in the wild - Phil Collins, same as my first target.
    Dave S likes this.
  22. The Killer

    The Killer Dung Heap Rooster

    The Cotswolds
    Don't mind paying the going rate for music in chariddy shops but if you're going to look up pricing then you should get to grips with grading; the other day I saw what looked like nice LP's by Faron Young and Elvis but the vinyl was wrecked.
    Alan2 likes this.
  23. The Killer

    The Killer Dung Heap Rooster

    The Cotswolds
    Found a really rare CD the other week, was really surprised it had ended up in a charity shop.
  24. MC Rag

    MC Rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    And it was?
    aravel likes this.
  25. The Killer

    The Killer Dung Heap Rooster

    The Cotswolds
    Rusty Wier - Black Hat Saloon/ Stacked Deck, yeah I know, who? It's a pretty rare find though, I was very pleased even though I already had a copy, nice to have a spare.
    AlmostHeavenWV likes this.

Share This Page