James Bullough Lansing, an obsessed and depressed genius, invented everything he could including his name. In Illinois he was born as James Martini in 1902. At some point he added the middle name Bullough and for some unknown reason, later changed his last name to Lansing. He moved to Salt Lake City, worked as an engineer, and then began to build radio loudspeakers as the Lansing Manufacturing Company. He moved to California when sound was being added to movies and became known as the best man to improve movie sound. The company floundered until 1941 when it partnered with Altec Service Corporation- which did movie sound maintenance and repair. Parts became a problem so in 1946, Lansing left Altec and founded Lansing Sound, Incorporated. Altec Lansing complained that using Lansing impinged on Altec Lansing’s rights so a new identity was created: JBL -James B. Lansing Sound, Incorporated.
May 2012: Take a look at this new video JBL made detailing their history.