Sunday, January 22, 2012


If you ask someone to tell you what object symbolizes the most the 40's-50's I'm pretty sure that Juke-Box have a special place in people imagination!!!

In all those stupid "cliché" posters about the 50's, you will have a Marilyn Monroe, a '59 pink Cadillac and of course a JUKE-BOX!!!!
I'm blonde as Marilyn, I already own a '59 Cadillac and I should own a Juke-Box of course!!!!

FONZIE knocking the juke-box in HAPPY DAYS must also be a vivid memory for most of us...

If your are searching one, it's quite easy to find but when it comes to the 40's or 50's ones in working condition you must have a huge budget... you will have to choose between a car or a juke box when you compare the estimations of these kind of machines!!!

There are so much amazing models...

My favorites are those from the 50's designed like an vintage american car! The 40's ones are nice and colorful but a little bit to kitch for my taste, moreover they most of the time only store ten 78rpm.

We were quite lucky to find one some years ago, but not because we were searching for one, but just because a friend wanted to get rid of one which was stored for years in his garage... it was not in working condition... but what a beauty!!!!

It was a BAL-AMI 200 dating from 1958!!! One of the last machine without Stereo. BAL-AMI is the american brand AMI but the BAL-AMI juke-boxes were assembled in Great Britain just after the war. The selection system are not the same on european models and most american models were green and european ones pink.
I think that if I could have chose a model I could have nominated an AMI from the late 50's...

So we bring back home this amazing machine for a really affordable price hoping to be able to repair it! It took some months to be able to hear its beautiful sound searching parts all around the world and trying to understand a really complex electrical and mechanical system. But what a nice sound, it's worth it!!!

Our juke-box can store hundred 45rpm and read both side of the plates. It's not in mint condition but in nice original condition and works now really well! We have the chance to know the story of this machine because of a metal plaque on the back, it was in a Café in Vitry-le-François so sold new in France in 1958 so most of the main instructions are in french!

I made myself all these stickers, one for each plate. There are only tunes from the 40's, 50's and early 60's inside, mainly doo-wop our favorites music style.

And here is a video of it.... It takes more space than an i-Pod but nothing compared... please take you ticket back to the 50's!!!!

If you are looking for a juke-box I can recommend to buy only main american brands : ROCK-OLA, WURLIZER, AMI and SEEBURG. They are more expensive than european ones but about all the parts for these models are re-made and there are a lot of good forums to help you to repair or restore your machine.

Are you interested with juke-boxes or own one?
Which ones are your favorites?


  1. That does it. I need your address, I'm coming to France and moving in with you! :) Every post you make just makes you THAT much cooler.

    1. Oh, I'm blushing.... The great thing in a blog is that you can show only the coolest part of your life! But my life is not only made in pink... I have problems like everybody!

  2. Oh I love your blog!

  3. So many darling jukeboxes! I've always wanted one (a really unique one that is), but I just can't seem to part with the money for one. :/ The one you picked up is just stunning!

    1. I hope you will be able to find the one which is waiting somewhere for you!
      I have just visited your blog, GOOD JOB!!!

  4. Bonjour,
    En effet très belles machines et jolie sélection de photos.
    Les prix ont toujours été très élevés mais aujourd'hui devoir choisir les aborder avec le budget d'une auto et bien tant pis on va continuer à mettre nos traces de doigt sur les vynils et les retourner à la main sur le tourne disque :)

    Olivia Banana.

    1. Les platines, c'est pas mal non plus! J'en possède une que mon père avait fabriqué début de 60's et ça fonctionne du tonerre!!! Idéal pour les 78 et 33 tours.

  5. Ah, what a beauty! I must have missed this post somehow - thanks for linking me to it. What a labour of love it must have been to restore it to working order, too.
    -Andi x

  6. I do have a jukebox. A 1959 Seeburg- the first stereo jukebox! We play almost everyday.

  7. bonsoir
    je viens d acheter un splendide ami jbi 120 de 1958. Il n'est pas encore stéréo mais la sélection est électrique. Je vais le recevoir cette semaine, je me réjouis vraiment très fort et d autant plus quand je vois votre bal et bel ami anglais qui en est quasiment la copie conforme (il est rose aussi ) mais le mien vient du Michigan. Belle soirée

  8. I'm searching for my first jukebox a rock ola 414 capri 2 unrestored.
    if anybody have one for sale...