Marky Staltari's Classic Pinball Memorabilia

Categories: Interviews
pinball collection.jpg
photos by Colin Lecher
A few of Staltari's machines. (Staltari asked not to be pictured for the article.)

Marky Staltari's affinity toward all-things pinball isn't difficult to explain. The punk rock guitarist of local band Janitors of Anarchy cites pinball's controversial history; the game spent a large part of its history banned in major US cities and was a symbol of rebellion in classic Hollywood movies.

Marky Hellspite, as he's known in the band, says he started collecting pinball machines and memorabilia in the '90s out of nostalgia: "[The machines] are the ultimate toy."

photo by Colin Lecher

Unfortunately, Staltari's sold off some of his machines to pay the bills, whittling down a collection of about 28 to 6 (including one machine made famous as the one Tommy plays in the film adaptation of the Who's "Tommy").

He's kept around some the old ones, from the '50s, '60s, and '70s, that he couldn't bear to part with, such as a classic billiards-inspired machine.

Functioning machines aside, Staltari's collected about a dozen slabs of painted glass, which act as the scoreboard for the game, as well as old books on pinball machines and vintage fliers advertising the games. His fliers are from the 1950s to 1990s, and includes one of Elton John (another actor in "Tommy") promoting a line of pinball machines. If someone can't afford, or isn't willing to invest in a pinball machine, Staltari says, they'll go after a flier.

After spending so much time collecting the machines and related antiques, Staltari knows a thing or two about the games, especially the art behind them.

He smiles when he points out some almost conspiracy-theory-level stories (like people discreetly performing sexual acts in the crowd of one glass scoreboard). "It's just ... weird shit," he says.

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Dana S
Dana S

Flash mishap or not, these are amazing!


Isn't this the same collection from the photo exhibit at Sweets and Beats this month? How did an art and culture blog fail to mention that here?

Colin might want to use lights in his next photo shoot. Seeing the flash of his camera in these photos says "amateur".

CultureFAIL x 2 for this one.

Wayne Michael Reich
Wayne Michael Reich

Harley-Please keep in mind that this is the New Times- The Pennysaver with Porn?

They obviously can't afford professional photography (hence Colin's double duty), nor did it occur to them they could have asked Rikki Lee to lend them her photography to illustrate this article.

The Editorzilla who oversees Jackalope Ranch (Amy Silverman) is not known for her ability to think outside of the box- or in it, for that matter.

I have read internet reports that she is actually Martin Cizmar in drag, but at this time, I cannot confirm or deny this. And as for this being an "Arts and Culture Blog", I think you are being way too kind.

They commit "limited space" to a "Doodles" series, rather than covering in depth art events like the one you mentioned.

New Times- your weekly inoculation against credible cultural journalism.

Respectfully,Wayne Michael Reich(http://www.WayneMichaelReich.c...)

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