There are many record sellers on Discogs who don’t have a brick & mortar shop, choosing to only sell records online. Despite not having a physical shop, these record sellers still have plenty of good tales about their journey to record selling, collecting, and the culture that surrounds it. This Crate Minds series is all about sharing these stories. This week, meet Guildford, UK-based Discogs record dealer, DavidMAnderson!
What’s your name and role?
David Anderson, one man band.
When did you start selling records on Discogs?
I joined in January 2014 and initially put on a few things from my own collection which I no longer wanted.
How did you get into selling records?
It was something I had always wanted to do and I had had a few false starts on eBay. I found out that you could sell records on Discogs through one of those friend of a friend conversations. I had just started a new job, but decided to give it a go. A friend gave me a pile of records he did not want, so I put them on and they started selling.
In spring 2014, I bought a wholesale lot of country and folk LPs for £400 from the local record shop; and although one third of the country LPs were not on Discogs or were poor sellers; the folk LPs did really well. That encouraged me to buy a wholesale lot of dance/soul LPs for £300 and they sold even better than the folk. Then I was offered a bargain lot of 7”and 12” singles for £50 and they went like hot cakes. Aha! I did not hesitate in June when the shop owner offered me a big lot of singles for £300 – mostly 70s disco, soul and funk. There were some real finds in there that went for good prices (£10-20). I listed at weekends and on days off. I did emails and packing before work. I did picking after work. I bought more wholesale lots.
By August 2015 I realised something had got to give. I really liked my job: great boss, friendly colleagues, pleasant workplace, reasonably well-paid, 25 minute walk to work, a permanent post and plenty to do (though some of it was a little dull). I applied to go part time, but this was turned down, so I decided to hand in my one month’s notice and see if I could make record dealing work!
Do you have a physical record shop, or do you sell online only? Where are you based?
I sell records online, on Discogs only. I am based in Guildford, UK.
What is your specialty?
I would like it to be singles on 7”, 12” and CD. However, LPs on vinyl and CD come in as part of job lots, and I buy them when I can see a good profit, so I have no specialty.
What is your favorite record you have in stock right now, and why this one?
The one that is sitting in someone’s basket and is about to be purchased, especially if it has never sold on Discogs before.
What was the most memorable item you ever sold?
The NWOBHM (New Wave of British Heavy Metal) single, Tyrant – “Hold Back The Lightning” that sold for £300 and allowed me to buy a new PC.
What does your own record collection look like?
Approx 3,000 LPs, 3,000 singles, and 1,000 CDs ordered by year and alphabetically by artist within year. I listen to a year of music at a time, and it takes me about 21 months to hear everything.
What is your personal holy grail record?
There isn’t one, but the most I have paid for an LP is £65 for the Nick Drake “Fruit Tree” Box Set.
What is the funniest thing that has happened to you when selling records?
Nothing laugh out loud, but buyers’ eccentricities make me smile, my own mistakes make me grimace, and generally it is a pleasure and joy to be a record dealer.
Set up a Wantlist, so its easy to buy more than one thing from a seller and save on postage.
And for sellers?
Assume your customers are honest, unless there is evidence otherwise, so that if something goes wrong you can put it right or offer redress without hesitation.
Anything else you'd like us to know?
At the end of 2015, I wrote an ebook about what I had learnt from my experience. It’s on Amazon and sells about one copy a month, so hopefully is helping others to make money on Discogs!
David has over 13,000 records for sale. Find a gem in his Discogs shop!