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John Bolin Joker 1989


In the encounters between cinema and the world of the guitar, the associations come more from the presence of the instrument in a decisive scene than from an inverse relationship. Obviously, we think of the high school prom scene from Back to the Future, in which Marty McFly covers “Johnny B. Goode” armed with an ES-345 in cherry red finish. Even so, there are a few rare occurrences of movie inspiration in the creation and manufacture of a guitar. As surprising as it is eccentric, this is the case with this John Bolin Instruments Joker guitar inspired by Tim Burton's now legendary film, Batman. This guitar with a look straight out of the comics takes up the codes of the famous antagonist of Gotham, with his costume and his green hair... for a unique instrument of its kind!

When Tim Burton set out to make his Batman in 1989, he infused it with his trademark acid colors and dark eccentricity. The film has since become mythical, and its visual universe a legend among comic-book movies of prodigious achievement. At the time of the film's release, DC Comics had in mind the production of various items related to the world of Gotham City to promote it. Alongside the traditional figurines, pencils and other plastic masks, they approached luthier John Bolin to design and manufacture two uniquely designed guitars inspired by the film. The result is two instruments straight out of the sticky, damp streets of Gotham: a John Bolin Batman and a John Bolin Joker. But not content with applying comic-book colors to existing guitars, John Bolin designed original instruments with a devastating look and high quality craftsmanship. Billy Gibbons' personal luthier came up with the Joker, a guitar vaguely reminiscent of ZZ Top guitarist Billy Bo, in the colors of Jack Nicholson's Joker costume.

Produced in a limited edition of 42, the John Bolin Joker is a surprising guitar featuring all the mastery of the luthier and all the eccentric imagination of Tim Burton. It takes up the Joker's colors: the purple of his costume and the green of his untidy hair. In keeping with his desire to evoke Tim Burton's film in every detail, John Bolin also designed a special headstock for this guitar. It features the Joker's face in convulsive, maniacal laughter. Taking this attention to detail a step further, John Bolin has also integrated a sound system that lets out the Joker's piercing laugh when the button is pressed. An absolutely unique guitar straight out of Tim Burton's comic book universe!

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