Superb Design Meets Master Luthier Craftsmanship


Since 1978, Bolin Guitars, LLC has built some of the most innovative guitars in rock and roll history. A list of their satisfied customers include; Billy F. Gibbons, Jimmy Page, Steve Miller, Dusty Hill, Lou Reed, Doc Watson, Albert King, Bo Diddley, Joe Perry, and Keith Richards & Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones.  No matter how outrageous Bolin Guitars look, John is adamant that “it’s about the music,” and, as his clientele testify, the quality of his instruments is second to none.

Founder and owner John Bolin, heads Bolin Guitars. John started building guitars in 1978, and today his company has grown to fill an over 6500 square foot manufacturing facility. John’s son Jake is now part of the team continuing the Bolin tradition to a new generation.

One of Bolin’s big breaks came in 1985, when John acted on a friend’s suggestion to build a guitar for Billy F. Gibbons of ZZ Top, who were playing in Boise. After intense homework and hours in the shop, John managed to build a not only a guitar, but also a matching bass.  In two weeks, the shop turned out a hot-rod influenced design covered in a metal-flake candy apple red paint job.

In a risky move, the night of show John snuck back stage and introduced himself to Billy, who lowered his sunglasses and said, “Get your best and meet me in the green room in ten.” As Billy played through both the bass a guitar, 2 minutes turned in to 20 and within 24 hours Billy and John had stuck their first deal.

This is the moment that began the working relationship between Bolin Guitars and ZZ Top and has helped Bolin Guitars create exceptional instruments.  With input from other craftsmen and the artists who play them, today, they have collaborated on over 200 of the most creative and innovative guitars in rock & roll.

“As my father has aged, so too has his attention to detail in his work. With more patience, his care and precision only becomes more pronounced, and I have seen him perfect a guitar for far longer than most craftsman would, and as a result his work remains timeless.” -Jake


Working in the shop as a luthier came naturally to Jake.  He had been around it from birth.  His formal apprenticeship started in 2001, and following a few years in the shop Jake toured as a guitar technician with numerous bands including Taylor Swift, and The Steve Miller band. Whether out on the road, or in the shop, Jake has been around and building exceptional, one-of-a-kind Bolin guitars for over ten years.  He works with the same passion and skill that he learned from his father.

“If you look on my sign it says J&J Bolin because Jake is now my partner. Jake is the most meticulous person I have ever worked with. His dedication to the quality of our guitars and to seeing this company into the future is extraordinary.”- John

Custom Built Guitars