Love Buzz

7" (black) / test pressing / Sub Pop / SP23 / made in USA (Erika) / 1988

White label test pressing, black vinyl. Plain white inner sleeve only. According to Jonathan Poneman, co-owner of Sub Pop, there were ten copies made. Six confirmed copies have been found.

Copy 1 was sold by Poneman personally to a local collector [1], but has since been resold. Copy 2 was given to a local shop, then sold to a collector from New York, and then to the current owner around 1997 [2]. Copy 3 was given to radio DJ Scott Vanderpool back in 1988. This was possibly the first Nirvana record played on the radio. [3] Scott sold his copy on eBay in June 2007. Copy 4 was discovered in late 2009, and is still in the hands of the original recipient. Copy 5 surfaced in 2010 when the owner, Mudhoney's Steve Turner, first attempted to sell it on eBay. He got the test pressing while visiting the Sub Pop offices [4]. Copy 6 was given to the manager of The Rocket by either Bruce Pavitt or Poneman, and whoever of them it was also labeled the test pressing in the newspaper's lobby [5].

Mark Arm of Mudhoney once sold a copy on eBay, which was accompanied by a certificate of authenticity (COA) which he obtained from Poneman [6]. This COA is where we obtained information regarding the quantity. It was sold for $1260 to a person in Seattle, and Arm delievered the test pressing personally. Another copy was sold around 1992-93 for $75. The seller had two copies, and had worked in and around the Seattle scene, including Sub Pop. I don't know about the whereabouts of these copies.

The six surfaced copies all have different handwritten notes, and all written in different types of pen or pencil. Titles and other info seem to have been added on a case-to-case basis, either by Sub Pop or by later owners. Especially the second copy with text in two different colors, the black text may have been written by Sub Pop, while the blue by a later owner. All the text on copy 4 was added by the original owner, while "Nirvana" was written by a Sub Pop employee on copy 5. "SP 23" however, was written on the sleeve by Turner [4].


Side A
  • Love Buzz (with cartoon intro)
Side B
  • Big Cheese


Side A
Side B
SP-23-B   kdisc   L-31540X

Copy 1, side A
1. Copy 1, side A

Copy 1, side B
2. Copy 1, side B

Copy 2, side A
3. Copy 2, side A

Copy 2, side B
4. Copy 2, side B

Copy 3, side A
5. Copy 3, side A

Copy 3, side B
6. Copy 3, side B

Copy 4, side A
7. Copy 4, side A

Copy 4, side B
8. Copy 4, side B

Copy 5, side A
9. Copy 5, side A

Copy 5, side B
10. Copy 5, side B

Copy 6, side A
11. Copy 6, side A

Copy 6, side B
12. Copy 6, side B