I have been conducting auctions of 78s and 45s on BLUES WORLD for nearly 20 years. I hold three auctions a year (closing in January, May and September) of approximately 2000 records each time. In conjunction with these auctions there are set price sales of the unsold records from the previous auction.

The auctions and set sales are posted to BLUES WORLD. There is a hard copy catalog for the auctions (many collectors bid on-line and do not require the hard copy) but the set sales are only on-line (no hard copy).

Whether you win one item or 100, shipping is always combined. I offer professional grading, packing and all items are unconditionally guaranteed. If you are unhappy with an item you can return it for a full refund including shipping both ways.

I receive records on consignment from some of the top collectors in the world and, over time, have offered many of the world's rarest records, Charlie Patton, Robert Johnson, Skip James and more, as well as thousands of more moderately priced records. If you have records you wish to sell or consign click here.

Bid what the record is worth to you. If yours is the high bid you win it for that price. Bids may be submitted by email, postal mail or fax. Bids by phone are permitted but discouraged (except during the "call back" process described in the next paragraph.)

I offer "call backs" on items for which you have bid $200 or the minimum, whichever is higher and on which you have requested a "call back." On these items, if your bid is topped you get a chance to respond. Most of the call back process usually takes place by email. Raises must be in increments of 10% or more.

The call back process is structured so that you do not have to be sitting by your computer as the auction close draws near. Instead, call backs continue until only one bidder is left. Each bidder has up to 24 hours to respond (to account for different time zones around the world, jobs, family obligations etc.) It does not usually take that long but this removes the stress of "getting your bid in at the last second" from the equation.

Invoicing takes about a week after the end of the auction. We are a small operation. Auction and Set Sale wins have to be collated and postage two ways must be calculated. Invoices are normally sent via postal mail. Please be patient.

Payment is expected within 30 days of receiving your invoice unless you have made prior arrangements with me. Payment can be made by check or money order (made out to Joel Slotnikoff), cash by registered mail, Western Union or Paylpal (send to Please add 2% if paying by Paypal to help offset their nearly 4% fee. This is appreciated but not mandatory. We add $4 to each shipment to cover the cost of packing materials and labor. I spend a lot of time in line at the Post Office and charge nothing for that.

All shipments are securely packed in new packing materials using cardboard pads and styrofoam peanuts. Particularly valuable shipments are double boxed.

It is your package so we will insure and declare for whatever you wish to value it at. Uninsured or underinsured packages are at your risk. We cannot insure for any more than what the declared value is.

Domestic shipping can be Media Mail (cheaper) or Priority Mail (faster). Both methods are calculated on your invoice. Overseas shipping options are First Class Mail International (cheaper but only for packages less than four pounds and can not be insured), Priority International (fast) or Express International (even faster). Both methods calculated on your invoice.

Insurance cost is also included on your invoice. Overseas customers who low declare and do not want insurance can deduct the insurance cost from their invoice.

Returns must be received within 60 days of the close of the auction.

Set sales of unsold records from previous auctions are held in conjunction with each auction. I send a notice in advance to everyone on the email list stating when the Set Sale will be posted to BLUES WORLD so everyone has an equal chance to get the records they want. Postings are normally at 5:00 PM St. Louis time on a Sunday afternoon. Set Sale records are on a first come, first served basis. The first person to request a record gets it.

There are two set sales in conjunction with each auction. The first contains the unsold records from the previous auction. The second contains the unsold records from the previous set sale at a 25% discount from the price the first time. The discount is taken on your invoice.

Invoicing and shipping are done in conjunction with the associated auction when it ends. Set sale records will not be invoiced or shipped ahead of time. On more expensive set sales I will let you know whether you have won it or not if you ask so you can budget for your auction bids. Otherwise you must wait for your invoice to see what you have won.

Grading is visual. 78s are graded N (new), E (excellent), V (very good), G (good). As is traditional in 78 grading G is actually not very good at all.

The full scale looks like this: N, N-, E++. E+ E, EE-, E-, V++. V+. nearly V+, VV+, V, VV-, V-, G+. G.

When I am undecided between two grades I usually play the record and let the sound quality determine whether to use the higher or lower grade.

Experienced collectors know that some records play better than they look and some play worse than they look. I do not play grade every record and I am not aware of any dealer who does. In some instances I will state "plays better" or "plays less" but I do not do this for every record.

Grading is subjective and opinions may differ. Generally I would say my grading is not as strict as "VJM" grading. I feel their description of V+ and V records leaves insufficient room at the bottom end of the scale. I think my grades are more evenly spread across the spectrum. I try not to differentiate grading of post-war and pre-war records. E is E and V- is V- in either case.

I get very, very few disagreements on grading. Once you have received an order or two you will see my grading for yourself and know what to expect, and, as stated above, all my records are guaranteed so if a record is unsatisfactory you may return it and lose nothing.

45s are graded on a scale of M, M-, VG++, VG+, VG. VG- and G. Records with significant groovewear are not graded above VG. Records VG and below are not returnable. Also, on records VG and below specific defects, tags on label, drill holes, label damage etc. may not be noted.

I normally send six emails a year, three that announce the auctions and set sales and three "last minute reminders" so your inbox will not be cluttered by emails from me. I do not share my list with anyone. To join the mailing list click here. Please remember to notify us if you change your email or postal address.