The $25,000 saxophone……

Steve Goodson

steve_lo-res copy

I got a call from a guy I used to play with years ago over the weekend. He said he was letting me know that he was willing to sell his old Selmer for “only $25,000”……uh, yeah….

Seriously, boys and girls, do any of you actually have first hand knowledge of any 60 year old saxophone selling for that sort of money? I’m not talking about some story you heard sitting at the bar, I’m talking about a transaction where you were actually present and can personally verify the financial details.

The horn in question, while not common, is actually not particularly rare. The last time I saw it it was in pretty good shape, but some idiot had been allowed to repad it with the wrong thickness pads and incorrect resonators. The case was not original and the original accessories were not present.

I guess a good question to ask initially is “how many people do you personally know who have paid $25,000 for a used saxophone in the last five years?”….I strongly suspect the answer is “none”…..the market at that point in the stratosphere is, in my experience, non-existent. The Japanese Selmer Feeding Frenzy of ten years ago is long since over, and the horns purchased have long since been resold at a loss with respect to the inflated purchase prices of that era.

I can count the bona fide serious saxophone collectors I know on the fingers of one hand, so I don’t much believe they are prospects. I seriously doubt that very many of the professional musicians I know have the income to support such a purchase.

I wished my friend well, and suggested that he might try eBay…..after all, there’s a sucker born every minute…..


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