Joe Doe by Vintage ~ Jailbird, Electric Guitar for sale at Richards Guitars.
Joe Doe by Vintage ~ Jailbird, Electric Guitar for sale at Richards Guitars.
Joe Doe by Vintage ~ Jailbird, Electric Guitar for sale at Richards Guitars.
Joe Doe by Vintage ~ Jailbird, Electric Guitar for sale at Richards Guitars.
Joe Doe by Vintage ~ Jailbird, Electric Guitar for sale at Richards Guitars.
Joe Doe by Vintage ~ Jailbird, Electric Guitar for sale at Richards Guitars.

Joe Doe by Vintage ~ Jailbird

Regular price £ 599.00
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‘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 case candy.

Certificate: Certificate of authenticity included.

ProShop Set-Up: Each guitar is individually set-up by the Vintage ProShop team.

Limited Edition 1 of 100 'Jailbird' is an original Vintage® guitar, designed and created by Joe Doe Guitars and the UK Vintage design team.

We provide the most comprehensive pre and post sale service in the industry with a combined value of over 100 GBP


Demonstrated by over1000 verified customer reviews HERE


This service consists of:


*  Completely taylored / personalised setup service ensuring your guitar plays to your personal playing requirements.

*  Unique level of quality control ensuring you cannot receive a poor quality / standard of guitar fit & finish.

*  6 & 12 month check & reset if you wish to take advantage and live close enough to visit.


Please be assured that this service is like no other with over 1 hour spent on every guitar before sale


For further extensive details on this service please click HERE

Wow - can it really be 25 years since I began selling Vintage guitars? 

I have a strong feeling this brand was available when I first opened my business and it has remained my "go to" recommendation for affordable & extreme value instruments ever since.

The range over the years has expanded massively to cater for most genres and it has continued to improve in quality as well as range available.

Sadly, my Achilles heel shall we say are the "over expectant"  minority (AKA Budget guitar police) who want PERFECTION at the cheapest possible price.  Whilst a minority they are quite a militant bunch and tend to take the guitar out the box, run their hands down the frets to find the fret end we didn't manage to find or the 16th fret on the D that isn't as flat as it should be - or the little cosmetic blemish on the reer of the guitar that if you put the guitar to the light and look at it as 23 degrees on a sunny afternoon.... you get the idea....

Look - I am telling you as it is....  Either I NEVER sell guitars at this price - or you accept the INCREDIBLE positives of this brand at this price.  The positives are MANY and I love them and you will too if your desire is to enjoy your guitar - not treat it as some kind of study for a physics project.

They contain what I call the building blocks of a great guitar.  

Our meticulous quality control and setup service ensures you receive the very best example of the guitar.  No stone is left unturned but PLEASE bear in mind this is a "relatively" budget brand and if you have OCD and the first thing you do is inspect every aspect of the guitar with a magnifying glass then I suggest you save up some money and go up to the next level of instrument.

If however you want a guitar that GENUINELY contains all the immense character of the original designs - the sound - the feel (and lets face it one of the brands they are mirroring have APPALLING standards that I would never allow out the door! yet cost 5x the price!) you will be blown away by Vintage.

Rest assured our meticulous quality control and preparation gets you the best.  The very best - and a unique added value that NO other shop in the country can match.  That I promise you!

Here are few videos I have done over the past couple of years which hopefully demonstrate why I love Vintage guitars so much and are my #1 recommendation for electric guitars under £400