UPDATED: It was only a matter of time.
As news spread Monday about the snafu at a German pressing plant that resulted in an undisclosed number of vinyl copies of Beyonce’s “Lemonade” accidentally containing music by Canadian punk band Zex, people began checking their copies (or quickly ordering new ones). And sure enough, just hours after the stories hit, copies of the album began hitting the auction market.
The most ambitious seller posted their copy on Discogs.com late Tuesday for £1000, although it had been removed at press time.
On eBay, two less-optimistic sellers posted copies for sale: one British seller listed a copy for $674.77 (0 bids, despite the promise “Mine is the actual copy that has gone viral all over the world”), while one in Belgium can be yours for just $227.60 (33 bids!).
In a complicated twist on the story, Zex was dropped from its label, Magic Bullet Records, amid sexual-assault allegations not long after news of the mispressings broke, according to Pitchfork; the band has denied the accusations.
The albums in question are yellow-vinyl pressings of Beyonce’s latest with the first five songs from the female-fronted Canadian punk band Zex’s latest album, “Uphill Battle,” on side A, instead of side A of “Lemonade.”
Asked about the rarity of the item, Discogs’ Jeffrey Smith told Variety, “Pressing/Printing issues aren’t entirely uncommon – for example Madonna’s ‘Rebel Heart’ 2LP release that has an entire side as ‘Music From The Motion Picture “Pulp Fiction”‘ with a copy for sale at $78. What’s interesting is the price hikes seem to lean toward the more obscure artists, which plays into the true collector’s soft spot – for example Gorilla Biscuits’ ‘history of somewhere’: between 50-90 copies have the Warzone B-Side label because they ran out of labels at the factory, the median price here is $618.71 but one sold for as much as $1081.29. All this to say, it depends on the scarcity of the ‘Lemonade’ mispressing. If it turns out to be a mass issue, then it could tank in value quickly. If it turns out there are 40-50 of these, it could skyrocket quickly, but then level out over time.” It was unclear at press time how many mispressed copies of “Lemonade” were manufactured.
On Tuesday, Columbia, Beyonce’s label, issued a statement addressing the matter: “Due to human error at the Celebrate Records plant in Germany, which Sony uses to manufacture vinyl, a small amount of the European run of the Beyoncé “Lemonade” vinyl included music from Canadian punk band, ZEX, on Side A. Beyoncé and ZEX were not aware of or responsible for the mispress. Fans who purchased the vinyl will be refunded and given a replacement copy. We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused.”