Please DO NOT paste the following information into your eBay listings,
especially if you are misrepresenting the equipment you are selling.
The Jedson brand was actively marketed in
the late 1920s to the early 1930s by the
John E. Dallas & Sons company in London.
The brand disappeared for many years but
was resurrected in 1969 by the Dallas Arbiter
company. The Jedson brand died again in 1975
when Dallas Arbiter went out of business.
This site has become the best place to obtain
information about the Jedson
brand. It is
a collection of information gathered
many sources. The most valuable
two catalogs produced by the
John E. Dallas
& Sons company.
Additional information will be added as it
is obtained, and corrections
will be made
Who was John E. Dallas?
John E. Dallas (referred to as JED for the
remainder of this document),
was born in
1856 in London. JED was a master
who had a deep interest in musical
In 1873 he worked as an apprentice
J.E. Brewser, a master banjo
maker in London.
Dallas created his own workshop
he began to make banjos, and
formed a new
company which continued to grow
years under the directorship
of his sons.
JED passed away in 1921; however, the J.E.Dallas
& Sons (usually referred
to simply as
Dallas) continued to produce
for many years thereafter.
Two years after working under J.E. Brewster
in 1873, JED began to manufacture banjos
in his own workshop for a number of different
musical instrument companies in London, England,
including Moore and Burgess Minstrels and
the Mohawk Minstrels. In 1875 the company
John E. Dallas & Sons was born. The brand
name Jedson obviously based on the company
name. JED had at least four sons, (M.A.,
C.L., S.J., and E.H. Dallas.) The company
was located at 415 Strand Street.
By 1893, the company grew to the point where
it needed to take over the entire
facility. The workforce also
accommodate the growth. The company
focused on banjo making; however,
to expand into the manufacturing
types of instruments. The instruments
hand-made and Dallas personally
banjo before it left the workshop.
In 1905, three of his sons were made directors
of the company which was renamed
Dallas and Sons Ltd. The company
to grow and relocated to 202
Street in 1914. In the 1920s,
and Sons began to market instruments
the Jedson brand.
J.E.Dallas died in 1921 after which the company
became a private limited company
it continued to grow and expand
other types of instruments.
In 1926 the company relocated to 6-10 Betterton
St in London. In addition to
instruments, Dallas was involved
and publishing music. As the
expanded, it produced wholesale
and became a significant importer/exporter.
Dallas also manufactured musical
In 1930, Dallas marketed instruments under
the Jedson and Mastertone brands. The 140
page 1930-31 Jedson and Mastertone catalog
contains a wide variety of keyboard, string,
woodwind, brass, and percussion instruments,
as well as parts and accessories for all
kinds of instruments.
In 1937 the company moved to Ridgemont Stret
in London. The 1938-1939 John E. Dallas &
Sons Ltd catalog was only 77 pages! The catalog
contained electric guitars branded as Radiotone,
and amplifiers under the Ridgmount brand
(apparently named after the street on which
the facility was located.) The catalog contained
a variety of kinds of acoustic guitars from
resonators to cello guitars.
Dallas imported musical instruments from
Germany, Italy, Czechoslovakia, and the USA
(including Kay, Harmony, and Vega.) The Radiotone
branded guitars appear to have been made
in Czechoslovakia, although at least one
model branded Radiotone was made by Kay in
the USA. Interestingly, the 1938-1939 catalog did
not appear to contain the Jedson
Per the 1938 catalog, the Dallas Company
was located on Ridgmont St in London. In
June 1947, John E. Dallas & Sons became
a publicly held company. Sometime later the company moved to Clifton
Street in London.
Due to the impact of World War II in Europe
between 1938 and 1945, the company stopped
making banjos until 1947 when it began limited
manufacturing of inexpensive banjos branded
Jedson, but with lesser quality of the pre-war
Jedson banjos. In June of that same year
(1947), J.E. Dallas and Sons Ltd became a public
company with an issued share capital of 500,000 GBP.
In the 1950s the company began to market
electric guitars under the Dallas brand and
imported guitars under the Shaftesbury brands.
Amplifiers were also added and were sold
under the Dallas, Shaftesbury, and Rangemaster
In the early 1960s, the company name was
changed to Dallas Musical, Ltd at Clifton
Street in London, and the products manufactured
expanded to include electronic devices. The
Houghton Works company facility was closed
down and its owner, George Houghton, began
to build instruments for Dallas in a new
workshop at Bexleyheath, Kent. The banjos
were Dallas branded. Dallas Banjo Ukueles
were also made at the facility under the
direction of George Formby.
Ivor Arbiter was another significant figure
in the music industry in the
1950s and 60s,
even being involved in the success
Beatles. Arbiter ran a small
specialty shop named Drum City
Shaftesbury Avenue in London.
A second store
was opened named Sound City which
in guitars and amplifiers. Eventually
Arbiter-Western company was formed
Arbiter who served as its deputy
Approximately 1965, Dallas Music, Ltd acquired
the company Arbiter-Western (aka Arbiter
Electronics?) which was in financial trouble.
Shortly thereafter, the company Dallas Arbiter
was formed. A branch of the parent company
focused on electronic devices such as sound
reinforcement equipment, guitar amps and
accessories under the brand Arbiter Sound
For a short time, Dallas Arbiter produced
drums, guitars and basses under the Hayman
brand. Early guitars distributed by Dallas Music
were branded Dallas. A line of imported guitars
under the Shaftesbury label were distributed
by Dallas Music sometime between 1960 and
1967. Other brands of guitars marketed by
Dallas Arbiter including Shergold and Hayman.
Dallas-Arbiter also manufactured amplifiers,
such as the AC-30 for Vox. Dallas Arbiter
is primarily known for its guitar effects
pedal known as Fuzz-Face. The pedal was manufactured
in the late 1960s and early 1970s; due to
popular demand, the pedal was re-introduced
in the 1980s. It is no longer manufactured.
Ivor Arbiter left Dallas Arbiter in the early
1970s, and formed a new company eventually
known as Arbiter AT. Dallas-Arbiter went
out of business in 1975. It does not appear
that Arbiter AT has any rights to instruments
made by Dallas-Arbiter because Dallas-Arbiter
was still in business when Ivor Arbiter left
Prior to its demise in 1975, Dallas Arbiter
imported guitars from Japan under the resurrected
Jedson brand. The Japanese guitars were made
by several manufacturers including electric
guitars by Teisco, and acoustic guitars probably
made by Yamaki; although, there at least
one other unidentified acoustic guitar maker
was involved. Nearly all Jedson guitars were
sold in the UK and few are found in the USA.
They were all built between 1969 and 1974.
The brand's market was primarily students
and beginners. The guitars were of high quality
but did not have all of the aesthetic details
of the parent brand and had a lower grade
of hardware including tuners, bridges and
tailpieces. During the 1960s and 1970s, Japanese
instrument makers were diligently trying
to match the quality of instruments made
in America such as Fender, Gibson and Martin.
Even the entry-level instruments of the time
were well made. Acoustic guitars generally
had solid wood back, sides, soundboard. The
electric guitars used Teisco-made pickups
which delivered a unique vintage tone desired
by musicians today.
Who Manufactured Jedson guitars ?
Jedson Acoustic Guitars
Jedson-branded acoustic guitars include one auditorium-size guitar (F907),
three Dreadnaught models (W-130, 9000, and FW913), a 12-string model, and
a jumbo copy of the Gibson SJ-200 copy (JW837.)
It appears that all of the Jedson acoustic guitars were built in Japan
by the Terada Musical Company.
The Terada Musical
Instrument Company was established in 1912. After World War II, Terada expanded
its production of stringed instruments. By the 1960s, Terada was producing more
than 10,000 guitars per month in its three Japanese plants. Terada made guitars
for well-known brands such as Ibanez, Gibson, and Gretsch.
Terada made many
acoustic guitars under its own label. Terada-branded models ranged from
high-quality entry-level guitars to ornately finished high-end guitars.
Terada built guitars
for distributers throughout the world. Jedson acoustic guitars were built for
Dallas Arbiter by Terada in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Dallas Arbiter
failed as a company in 1975 and the production of Jedson-branded acoustics was
All Jedson acoustics have solid spruce tops. Most have rosewood or mahogany
sides and back. The 12-string models and the W-130 and 9000 deradnoughts
have mahogany backs and sides also. The JW837 has a three-piece back.
The F907 appears to be a copy of the well-known Martin 000-28 The JW837
is without a doubt a copy of the famous Gibson SJ-200 Jumbo. The JW837
is a detailed replica from the headstock inlays to the engraved pickguard,to
the elaborate bridge, although the Jedson has a three-piece back.
Terada models have identical Jedson counterparts.
The Terada W180 is similar to the Jedson 9000.
The Terada T1000 is identical to the Jedson F907
Jedson Electric Guitars
Like the acoustics, the electric Jedson guitars
were produced/distributed during the early
1970s. Jedson is also known brand of steel-guitar.
The Jedson steel guitar was made famous by
David Gilmore of Pink Floyd (a photograph of such a guitar can be seen
All of the Tele models and the semi-hollow and thin-archtop guitars were
made by the Teisco Company of Japan. The full-body archtop is virtually
identical to the Greco, also made by Teisco. Some believe the Gibson Les
Paul copies resemble those made by Tokai. They certainly were made in Japan
during the same time-frame as other Tokai built Les Pauls Another source
stated that Teisco made a SG model was sold under the Jedson and Kay brands.
Teisco was bought by Kawai in 1967. Kawai started to produce all the Teisco
guitars, as well as its own brand.
The following electric guitar
been identified and sample photographs
available on this site.
Jedson Telecaster (true Fender copy)
Jedson Stratocaster (true Fender copy)
Jedson "Tele-style" - three versions. A single pickup with no tremolo and two variations
of a double pickup model
Jedson Tele-style bass (Fender copy)
Jedson Les-Paul Standard (Gibson copy)
Jedson Les-Paul Custom (Gibson copy)
Jedson Les-Paul bass (Gibson copy)
Jedson SG (Gibson copy)
Jedson SG bass (Gibson copy)
Jedson L5 archtop (Gibson copy) --- Three samples identified
Jedson thin-line archtop - several samples located
Jedson semi-hollow (A little like the Gibson ES335, but not
close enough to get anyone excited)
By far the most common Jedson electric is
the Telecaster-style guitar.
Jedson Lap Steel Guitars
Jedson lap steel guitars are probably the most desired Jedson-branded
instruments likely because they were made
famous by David Gilmore of Pink Floyd. The steel guitar appears to be identical to an early Fender model. Will
add more info about this shortly