Home > 1980s Memorabilia > 1980s Posters

1980s Posters

By: Chris Nickson - Updated: 12 Mar 2015 | comments*Discuss
 

Posters never go out of style as decoration in the rooms of students and teens. Fans too, often collect them, especially for gigs by a favourite band that they’ve attended. But the closer one comes to the present day, the less value posters have.

By the 1980s, the artwork that had made the posters of the 1960s, and even early 1970s, so beautiful, had vanished. Tour posters had, for the most part, become photographs – good enough as advertising, but usually not so stunning.

That’s not to say they’re all without worth. Special gigs and tours, and certain bands, do bring some interesting prices. For example, a poster for a gig with Iron Maiden and Guns’N’Roses, from 1988, was being offered by a dealer for £65. Hardly a fortune, but a respectable price for a poster. A Metallica concert poster (which saw them down the bill from the Scorpions and Ratt!), was about the same price, and only slightly cheaper was one for Ozzy and Metallica – both, you’ll observe, from early in Metallica’s career.

Some artists, like Bruce Springsteen, can command higher prices for posters – a pair from the early 1980s going for around £200 each. But they’re the exception, rather than the rule. Even U2 could only hope to get around £30 for a poster (although any from early Dublin gigs would have much greater value).

As always, be aware that some posters (such as in the image above) are reproduced, either legitimately or otherwise, and can still make nice additions to a collection, but are not likely to be worth anything.

What to Buy

The vast majority of posters aren’t great investments. You’ll need something quite rare, like ones advertising early gigs by Guns’N’Roses, for instance, or gigs by the Seattle grunge bands in the late 1980s, before they became famous. But even with those, don’t start planning your retirement; the maximum they’re likely to bring is in the upper hundreds, and that’s if you’re lucky.

That’s not to say values won’t rise, and that these rare items won’t be worth in the low thousands at some point in the future. For now, though, they’re either long term investments, or for collectors.

It’s perhaps no surprise that posters for the biggest acts of the 80s, people like Michael Jackson or Madonna, don’t sell for much. Their tours were huge affairs, and the posters simply advertising, not art – indeed, you can say the same for the Rolling Stones in this period, too. With a single, generic poster for an entire tour, there’s little value, even for collectors.

Where to Buy

While dealers handle some posters, many of the truly rare ones are going to be sold by fans, often people who’d followed the band since the early days and now need money or have simply decided to give up collecting for some reason.

Those might crop up on eBay, or more likely in private auctions on fan sites – which makes them easy to miss unless you check those sites often. If you bid, you’ll probably be competing against dealers, but at the same time, prices are unlikely to go that high on any 80s poster auction.

As a general rule, avoid dealers for posters from this era unless you’ve been unable to find the specific item you seek elsewhere. In most cases you can find it cheaper on eBay.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
I have a substantial collection of silver gold and platinum discs I would like to sell from my time at Polydor Records in the 80's and Silvertone/Jive Records in the 90's including The Jam, Orange Juice, Billy Idol, The Stone Roses, Billy Ocean, John Lee Hooker and Buddy Guy. What is the best way to sell them? As a collection or individually?
Andyr58 - 12-Mar-15 @ 4:44 AM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • mcan15
    Re: Take That Memorabilia
    Before I throw them away, Is a 1995 & 1996 calendar of any interest plus a large badge from same time?
    5 September 2019
  • UncleBobL
    Re: Take That Memorabilia
    I have a arge collection of Take That Fan mags that my daughter left behind when she moved out 25 years ago. Currently downsizing is there…
    19 July 2019
  • Jo-Jo
    Re: Take That Memorabilia
    I have a signed tshirt, all 5 members from the 1992 tour at Bradford St George's hall. The shirts were signed & thrown off stage, also…
    15 April 2019
  • Jenjen
    Re: Take That Memorabilia
    Hi I have a authenticated signed print from Take Thats Pray video on the beach in immaculate condition.... anyone habe an idea of value…
    17 September 2018
  • jan
    Re: Take That Memorabilia
    i have all 5 signatures on their stage lighting plan for a concert i went to at Hammersmith Apollo. i think early 90s. i was also given a…
    22 July 2018
  • Jon Limbret
    Re: 1960s Magazines
    You can try asking beatchapter. They buy and sell all sorts of music magazines including nme melody maker disc sounds etc. But they do not list…
    30 May 2018
  • Mary Hagood
    Re: 1960s Tickets and Passes
    I have 1 Suffolk downs Beatles ticket unused white and 1 blue..i would like to sell them ASAPl
    20 May 2018
  • Jemma Bee
    Re: 1970s Clothing
    Hi there, I work in a charity shops and we have been donated a signed George Melly tie. Please could you advise on the value of this and where it…
    9 May 2018
  • Rach
    Re: Take That Memorabilia
    Hi, I’ve came across an old take that locket necklace in a black pouch and a watch (without the strap) they are both in excellent…
    5 January 2018