• Established in 1958

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Joe Doe by Vintage - Jailbird™


Joe Doe by Vintage - Jailbird


‘Jailbird’ owned by John Henry Burke

John Henry Burke, prison warden at the Ohio State Penitentiary from 1959 to 1977, believed music was the key to help his prisoners reform and rehabilitate. Burke allowed prisoners to keep radios and turntables in their cells, as well as make musical instruments in the workshop. Every year Burke would open the doors of his prison to welcome in families to watch their loved ones perform songs they had written on instruments they had made.

However in 1967, incarcerated arsonist Wilbur Reams started a prison riot by playing blistering guitar licks through a distorted amplifier. Burke reacted by putting a ban on what notes the prisoner could play, saying; “Anything north of the 12th fret of a guitar is looking for trouble. We’re just gonna stick to simple blues and country.” Burke continued to battle with Reams’ over his incendiary guitar playing until May 3rd, 1973, when Reams suddenly escaped via the prisons’ sewer system. In a cruel ironic twist, Reams had dug his way to freedom using tools stolen from the very workshop that Burke had set up to put his prisoners on the path to redemption.

Body: Double bound American Alder body that is light and resonant and property of the Ohio State Penitentiary. So you don’t forget, there are numerous warnings on the sides of the body. Remember “Ignorance is not an excuse”; Prison Rule 182, Chapter 6.

Bridge: The Wilkinson WTB 3 saddle design provides a tried and tested way to deliver perfect intonation and tone transfer. As reliable as the order for lights out at 9pm.

Pickups: One Joe Doe Custom designed bridge pickup that is tangy and full, like Brody’s blackberry hooch from D block. (But for a pack of smokes, we’ll let you in on a little secret - we’ve tunnelled underneath the ovoid pick guard and put a hot humbucker under there. Shush, you never heard it from us…)

Controls: Single master Volume and Tone control with (contraband) five-way pickup selector switch.

Machine heads: Wilkinson WJ55S machine heads provide maximum tuning stability and are chrome plated. They’re shiny too, so you can check to see if someone is creeping up behind you. It’s prison people, always gotta be on your toes…

Neck: One piece Hard rock Maple neck, shaped into a classic Vintage ‘soft C’ profile. Real warm and comfortable in the palm, like the goodbye handshake you get from Warden Burke on the last day of your sentence.

Fingerboard: Lignum Rosa™ with keyhole and barbed wire inlays. Just don’t go further than the 12th fret. Remember Prison Rule 182? Chapter 6?

Frets: 22 Medium profile frets. Not to be removed and re-purposed.

Nut: 43mm Graphtech nut that works smoothly and is friction free, like the suspension on the conjugal caravan.

Headstock: Unique Vintage Joe Doe “Jailbird” headstock design.

Case: Joe Doe luxury hardshell case with certificate of authenticity and case candy.

The limited edition 'Jailbird™' is an original Vintage® guitar, designed and created by Joe Doe Guitars and the UK Vintage design team.



Vintage Joe Doe guitars are very individual and available in limited numbers, as Ben the creator behind Joe Doe explains, 

“From the hamster wheel to the finished product is quite a long process. At the moment there are 8 Vintage Joe Doe guitars in the series and I’m currently working on the next 8, which will also be available in limited quantities. As soon as the designs are complete, they’re sent to the amazing Vintage design team for construction. When finished, each Vintage Joe Doe guitar is individually set up by the Vintage ProShop Team and comes with a certificate of authenticity, along with those little extras in a luxury hardshell case. 


Guitar.Com Review


Brand Vintage


How much is delivery?
At Ivor Mairants Musicentre we offer thousands of products that are currently in stock and can be delivered to your home address, anywhere in mainland UK. You will be able to see your delivery charge at the "Checkout" page.

Do you offer Next Day Delivery?
Yes, we offer a Next Day Delivery service for in-stock orders placed before 1pm Monday-Friday. Next Day Delivery and Saturday Delivery carries an extra charge. Ivor Mairants Musicentre commit to delivering on time, we rely however, on our carriers to fulfil their contract in this regard, and can not be held liable for any failure of third parties in fulfilling delivery expectations.

Can I change my delivery address after I have placed my order?
Once you have placed your order with us, we are unable to change any of the information you have given us, as most orders are dispatched from our distribution warehouse. Our contract carriers however offer various levels of free of charge enhanced service such as DPD PREDICT, which allows the consignee to be alerted by e-mail and/or text message of the delivery window and allows for changes allowed by the contract carrier to the detail of the actual delivery time and/or location. Where such services are available all orders will benefit from auto enrolment in the services. Ultimately, if there is no-one to sign for your delivery, you will be left a card by our contract carrier inviting you to collect from the depot or re-arrange delivery.

If it proves impossible to deliver your goods within the time allowed by our contract carriers, the consignment will be returned to us and you will unfortunately become liable for all redelivery, and/or redirection charges. Please check your confirmation email for the status of your goods before contacting us. Should you need to change your details, for example you have moved house, you can change your details by email at info@ivormairants.co.uk and the new information will be updated within 24 hours. Please note that any orders placed before changes are made will use your old details.

Can I track my order?
The vast majority of our UK and Eire domestic consignments and international shipments are by trackable service. You will be emailed a tracking number with your dispatch information. Please note that tracking numbers are not used for smaller orders sent by Royal Mail or similar postal service. If you require your order to be consigned using a trackable service, please advise us AT THE POINT OF ORDER.




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Available from 18th May 2020

  • Available from 18th May 2020
Our Price £599.00

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