Price paid: $2.50
Most people roll their eyes at the mere mention of Bananarama, but stick with me on this one. I used to be one of those ‘too cool’ music snobs, but I softened to the group when I found out that my then girlfriend, who was a hard-as-nails scene goth, liked them. I think a lot of the bias comes from the fact that they aren’t a ‘band’ as such, merely vocalists, akin to the girl groups of the 60s. And I’m fine with that. They have a long history; check out this early song that shows a different face before the the Venus-era scrubbed-clean Stock Aitken Waterman period:
For me the real fun started when Siobhan Fahey (the blonde as pictured below) left the group. She formed Shakespears Sister, which certainly took the weird up a notch, while still retaining the pop attitude.
The true retail value on this one is a bit of a mystery. Logic dictates that, being such a huge chart-topper in the US, a greatest hits collection wouldn’t have much value. But in doing research it appears that the US release is fairly rare. UK/European versions (with the same artwork) can be found on eBay and Gemm for under ten bucks, but it appears that the LP didn’t get wide release here in America.
Why? Well my guess is that, 1988 being the beginning of the Golden Age of the CD, the push was really towards selling little shiny discs; perhaps since the group were so mainstream the label did think that a vinyl release was merited? Vinyl sales in Europe and the UK remained strong up until the 90s; this would explain the relative commonness of those versions. Just a guess. My example is one of those ‘gold stamp on the label’ promo copies as well, which only strengthens the ‘did not get wide release’ theory. Included is a photo glossy of the group!