Musician Trading Card Treasure Hunt

By Chris Mixer / cmixer

Collectors can expect to find trading cards featuring musicians in sets like 2005 Fleer American Idol Season 4 featuring Carrie Underwood or 2014 Panini Country Music Trading Cards featuring Miranda Lambert. However, major musical talent can also be found in unexpected places. Some set checklists may surprise even the most seasoned collectors.

Hybrid sets, that feature athletes as well as a variety of pop culture celebrities, continue to be popular. The most recognized hybrid set is Topps’ Allen & Ginter brand, focusing on MLB stars and famous personalities since debuting in 2006. A few of the musicians featured in Allen & Ginter include Post Malone (2019), Axl Rose (2013), and Snoop Dogg (2014, listed as “Snoop Lion” in conjunction with his reggae album).

Topps Allen & Ginter is not the only hybrid set. Upper Deck redeveloped the Goudey line of trading cards in 2007 and their Goodwin Champions brand in 2009. Goudey has included Marky Ramone (2017), Johnny Rotten (2017), and Brandon Boyd of Incubus (in 2019). Some of the acclaimed musicians found in Goodwin Champions include Derek Trucks (2021), Big Boi (2020), and Abe Cunningham of the Deftones (2021).

In other cases, musicians are included as an insert set within a traditional sports product. For example, you can find Jay-Z in 2005 Topps Pristine Baseball, 2005-06 Finest Basketball, and 2005-06 Topps Luxury Box Basketball. In 2004, Donruss launched their “Fans of the Game” inserts. Marky Mark Wahlberg (2022 Donruss Football), Meat Loaf (2005 Donruss Baseball), and Darius Rucker (2004 Playoff Honors Football) have all been included as part of an insert set. In 2008 Upper Deck introduced the set Spectrum Baseball. The ”Spectrum of Stars” insert set included many heavy metal icons like Jani Lane, Vince Neil, and Sebastian Bach. 

Many musicians crossover to acting. Sometimes it’s to show themselves as a diverse talent and other times they are just a super-fan wanting to make an appearance on their favorite show. When this happens, you might find them in an entertainment trading card product. Iggy Pop can be found in 2018 Rittenhouse Star Trek Deep Space Nine: Heroes & Villains. Mick Fleetwood can be found in 2016 Rittenhouse Star Trek: TNG Portfolio Prints Series 2. Ozzy Osbourne can be found in 2002 Inkworks The Osbournes Season 1. Henry Rollins can be found in 2014 Cryptozoic Sons of Anarchy Seasons 1-3. Marilyn Manson can be found in 2015 Cryptozoic Sons of Anarchy Seasons 6-7. David Bowie can be found in 2015 Unstoppable Cards The Man Who Fell to Earth. And Bobby Brown can be found in 2016 Cryptozoic Ghostbusters.

Of course, the highest likelihood of finding a musician in a set that is not music-specific is a brand such as Panini Americana or Leaf Pop Century. These sets bring a broad mix of celebrity-driven content without focusing on a specific license, show, or movie. In Panini Americana you can find Justin Bieber (2011), Vanilla Ice (2015), and Biz Markie (2015). In Leaf Pop Century you can find Weird Al Yankovic (2014), DMX (2012), and Roger Daltrey (2015).

Sketch card sets hold one more surprise. Multiple sets including 2011 Upper Deck Thor Movie Trading Cards and 2012 Cryptozoic The Walking Dead Comic Series 1 feature a contributing artist with a musical background. Billy Martin isn’t just an excellent artist, he is also the rhythm guitarist and keyboardist of the band Good Charlotte. This list doesn’t even scratch the surface of musician trading cards if you consider all the cut signatures that have been included in various products over the years. Fans of musicians can collect trading cards that feature talent ranging from Rock ‘n’ Roll royalty to R&B legends. Sometimes all you have to do is dig a little deeper into the checklists.

The History of Panini Prizm NFL

By Geoff Otto / GeoffO

Panini Prizm has become the currency of the hobby when it comes to football cards. If you want “the one” rookie card of your favorite player, you can’t go wrong getting their Prizm rookie card. This wasn’t always the case. For many years Topps Chrome was the flagship product, Topps was the brand that introduced the refractor and many parallels that we all love. In the 2000s, Topps Chrome looked like a brand that would never be surpassed as the flagship product. From 2009 to 2016, Topps and Panini both held rights to produce NFL-licensed cards. Prizm debuted in 2012 as newcomer Panini’s flagship brand, sparking the competition between Topps and Panini for NFL supremacy.

A massive change in the hobby was coming, in December 2015, it was announced that Panini signed a long-term contract securing the company exclusive trading card and sticker rights with the NFL. As of April 2016, Panini would be the sole manufacturer of NFL and NBA cards. With that announcement Prizm, already a few years into production, secured its spot as the flagship brand by default and became the most desired among collectors. D.J. Kazmierczak, Panini’s vice president of sales and product development at the time of the announcement, acknowledged that some collectors may not embrace Panini’s exclusive football license, regardless of how the company’s products perform in 2016 and beyond. We can say now without a doubt, that Panini Prizm has been embraced.

In my opinion, 2013 through 2016 feature Panini’s worst designs for the Prizm brand. Once Panini had sole NFL rights, the card designs started to move forward. For 2017, Mahomes’ rookie year, the set has a solid design and each year the look has steadily improved. When the pandemic hit in 2020, many new or returning collectors flocked to the hobby. Additionally, that year had possibly the greatest NFL draft class in history. The 2020 Prizm brand had a fantastic design, which led to an unbelievable following of the product. Trying to find a box available for sale, sitting on a shelf that year was like finding a needle in a haystack. Since 2020, who would question that Prizm is the undisputed football product among collectors?

The crazy thing is history may repeat itself and we are about to go through this again! Fanatics has exclusive licenses to the NFL beginning in 2026. Panini, with Prizm, will be on the outside, unable to produce NFL cards Prizm or any other Panini brand. Fanatics bought the Topps company which now raises questions about the football’s flagship product. What will be the new NFL flagship product? Will it return to Topps Chrome? Will the Prizm brand disappear? The coming years will answer those questions, but for now, Prizm remains THE brand collectors love.

Important COMC Consignment Submission Update

Today we launched an added feature in our Submission Wizard to improve your consignment experience and facilitate faster processing times.

Previously, a mixed batch of supported items could all be combined into one submission without separating the groups by type. To help us better our service offerings, you now need to separate items by service level and group.

Submission Requirements:

  • Submissions must be separated into one of the following groups within each service level:
    • Graded – Comic Books
    • Graded – Oversized Cards (tall boys, booklets, coins, extra thick, and other non-standard size cards)
    • Graded/Uncirculated – Cards (PSA graded cards, sealed Panini Flawless holders, etc.)
    • Raw – Comic Books
    • Raw – Gaming Cards (TCG)
    • Raw – Oversized Cards
    • Raw – Trading Cards

Submissions not separated by group, or with incorrect or missing groups, may be subject to processing delays and a $5 missing paperwork fee for each missing group.

This change in the submission process can be viewed on Step 4 of the Submission Wizard.

Make sure to separate the cards by group when preparing your shipment.

Minimum Fees:

A minimum fee for each group applies to the following services:

  • Each Select group has a $3 minimum fee
  • Each Standard group has a $10 minimum fee

On Step 4, select “Next” after you confirm your card counts and submission levels.

On Step 5, select your desired Shipping or Drop Off location. Make sure to confirm the information is correct, then select “Approve Submissions.”

On Step 6, you will need to print the Submission Slips for each group within each submission level. You must include the designated Submission Slip with each group.

Remember the following during the submission process to ensure you submit items correctly:

  • Use the proper category for each group.
    • Graded – Comic Books
    • Graded – Oversized Cards (tall boys, booklets, coins, extra thick, and other non-standard size cards)
    • Graded/Uncirculated – Cards (PSA graded cards, sealed Panini Flawless holders, etc.)
    • Raw – Comic Books
    • Raw – Gaming Cards (TCG)
    • Raw – Oversized Cards
    • Raw – Trading Cards
  • You can submit all items in the same shipment, but you must separate each group of items and include a submission slip for each group.
  • Customers will be charged a $5 missing paperwork fee for each group that is missing or submitted incorrectly.

These additional details in the Submission Wizard will enable COMC to provide faster processing and a better overall experience for consignors.

Check out the following tutorial to walk you through our updates to the Submission Wizard.

To see this new Submission Wizard feature or start a new consignment today, please visit the Submission Wizard on your Dashboard.

If you have questions regarding this new submission process, please contact Customer Service at or on Live Chat.