Joe Doe by Vintage Gas Jockey review – a madcap pairing of the Stratocaster and Firebird designed by a UK screenwriter

The new 2023 Joe Doe by Vintage range boasts a totally fictitious history but some refreshingly different takes on the classics

Joe Doe By Vintage Gas Jockey
(Image: © Future / Neil Godwin)

Guitar World Verdict

A lot of thought has gone into this guitar; it’s certainly not just another copy in a limited colour. It would certainly be a very valid instrument in Vintage’s standard range, too, especially in an ivory or black gloss finish. But as is, it’s refreshingly different with a modern-retro mash-up vibe. Nice job.


  • +

    Interesting hybrid design.

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    Good build.

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    Neck shape.

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    Setup and playability.

  • +

    Good voicing to the mini-humbuckers.


  • -

    A few untidy points.

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    Unusual control circuit.

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    Wide ’n’ low fretwire won’t suit everyone.

You can trust Guitar World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing guitar products so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Aside from creating some very tidy (if highly derivative) electric guitar designs, Vintage, the long-running house brand of UK distributor John Hornby Skewes, has a neat tie-up with the UK’s Ben Court, the man behind Joe Doe Guitars. He describes himself as follows: “By day, I’m a screenwriter for film and TV, and by nights and weekends I make custom-built guitars with stories built in.” 

Our Joe Doe ‘Gas Jockey’ is one of three new designs released this year and its story concerns a certain “Wally ‘Songman’ Saban, a living, breathing, human jukebox”, says the blurb. “Pull up into his New Jersey gas station on Fellowship Road and he’ll not only fill your car with gas, but will play any song you can think of …” The tall tale continues over at the Vintage website, but let’s take a closer look at the guitar.

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Dave Burrluck
Gear Reviews Editor, Guitarist

Dave Burrluck is one of the world’s most experienced guitar journalists, who started writing back in the '80s for International Musician and Recording World, co-founded The Guitar Magazine and has been the Gear Reviews Editor of Guitarist magazine for the past two decades. Along the way, Dave has been the sole author of The PRS Guitar Book and The Player's Guide to Guitar Maintenance as well as contributing to numerous other books on the electric guitar. Dave is an active gigging and recording musician and still finds time to make, repair and mod guitars, not least for Guitarist’s The Mod Squad.