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Custom Electric Guitars and Basses

Since guitars and basses are much less standardized than violin family instruments, I have not found one single design that satisfies all needs and tastes as well as our electric violins do. With that thought in mind, I start each guitar or bass as a blank sheet of paper. Every decision concerning that instrument is the customer's choice with ideas from our staff as needed or requested. I have at times built instruments for customers who came in with a full blueprint specified almost entirely in advance.

On the other hand I have built instruments for people who had very little idea of what they wanted and have taken them through an educational process so that they could end up with the instrument of their dreams. My objective is to always build the instrument of the customer's dreams. Sometimes in order to do that, the customer has to first find out what that means to them.

The following is an except from the book Custom Guitars - A Complete Guide to Contemporary Handcrafted Guitars published in 2000 by String Letter Press. The book covers the work of 203 guitarmakers from all over the world. It features a photo of the headstock of one of my archtop guitars on the Archtops chapter title page. The excerpt is from page 135 and reads as follows:

"John Jordan began his guitar-making career as an apprentice for Ervin Somogyi in 1980. He specializes in instruments built to order and has a way of helping customers articulate their dreams. Customers may choose the body shape, woods, bindings, purflings, inlays, and neck dimensions. His work has been profiled in the New York Times, Musical Merchandise Review, and Frets."