Ten Music Themed Pinball Machines Fans (Under 50) Want to See

Ten Music Themed Pinball Machines Fans (Under 50) Want to See
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Ten Music Themed Pinball Machines Fans (Under 50) Want to See
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Ten Music Themed Pinball Machines Fans (Under 50) Want to See
Published on
January 26, 2023
Updated on
May 6, 2024
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Ten Music Themed Pinball Machines Fans (Under 50) Want to See

Plenty of pinball machines have successfully captured the vibes and discographies of popular musicians. Stern produced a Metallica game, AC/DC, The Rolling Stones (2011), and KISS (2015) pinball machines, complete with hit songs from the respective bands. Spooky’s Rob Zombie’s Spookshow International machine combined Rob Zombie’s music with his obsession with the macabre. And Bally got an early jump-start on turning musicians into pinball machines, releasing both Elton John and Dolly Parton themed machines in the '60s and ‘70s. 

The problem? Despite the legacies these bands have established, they can’t help but start to feel a little, well, dated. Fans (especially those newer to the pinball scene) are ready to see pinball machines less exclusive to their parents and grandparents' eras. Over in our Hype Index, we track the IPs fans are clamoring for and there have been no shortage of requests for music pins that speak to younger generations. Which ones, exactly? Here are ten of the most requested.

Beastie Boys

beastie boys music themed pinball machine

No one could have predicted the influence three white guys nicknamed Mike D, MCA, and Ad-Rock would have on the rap scene when they formed the Beastie Boys in the early ‘80s. From their catchy cadences to their chaotic music videos, the Grammy-winning boys from New York City are overdue for their own pinball machine. 

Picture the sci-fi aesthetic from their “Intergalactic” video in a machine, complete with a large robot that makes its way through NYC as a humorous counterpart to Stern’s latest, Godzilla. Or imagine a high-octane chase setting straight out of “Sabotage. 

“Fight For Your Right” to get this pinball machine, indeed. 

Green Day

green day music themed pinball machine

An album named after a slang word for human waste doesn’t sound like a promising way to start a career, but Green Day and their success after releasing Dookie in 1994 would beg to differ. Music video airplay on MTV helped the rock band, led by Billie Joe Armstrong, dominate the charts.   

If Green Day can get a jukebox musical on Broadway (American Idiot), surely they can get their discography into a pinball machine. The mayhem illustrated in the Dookie album cover plus the suburban focus of their lyrics would lend itself well to a machine theme. Conquer the game to be crowned the “Jesus of Suburbia.”


eminem music themed pinball machine

Eminem aka Slim Shady aka Marshall Mathers is another white rapper who, along with his angst, anger, and clever lyrics, introduced mid-America to hip hop in the ‘90s and quickly solidified himself as one of the greatest rap artists out there.

Among his many awards include an Emmy, an Oscar, and multiple Grammys, so next up to collect is his own pinball machine. Fight against an army of Eminem look-alikes from “The Real Slim Shady,” or turn his semi-autobiographical movie Eight Mile into a machine so you can “Lose Yourself” in this Rap God’s catalog (Mom’s spaghetti not included). Surely Eminem is game to make this a reality, given that his latest album, 2022’s Curtain Call 2, features a pinball backglass as its cover art!   


muse music themed pinball machine

With a killer falsetto by lead singer Matt Bellamy and experimental instrumentations in the rock genre including church organs, Muse released Origin of Symmetry to great acclaim in 2001. Their style has been described as progressive rock, art rock, progressive rock, and even space rock, a descriptor that would make for a fun theme in a pinball machine. 

Black Holes and Revelations would abound in a machine that could bring to life interstellar songs like “Starlight,” “Supermassive Black Hole,” “Dead Star,” and “Space Dementia.”  


nirvana music themed pinball machine

The Seattle grunge scene exploded in the late ‘80s when the rock band Nirvana made their debut, co-founded by the lead singer Kurt Cobain. They displayed a punk aesthetic and their lyrics emphasizing disconnection, as well as their unique sound that dabbled in pop melodies, made them huge influencers on the genre, as well as one of the best selling bands ever. 

An arcade already “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” so it’s time to see a Nirvana pinball machine. Trigger a blackout mode on the machine since, “with the lights out, it’s less dangerous. Here we are now, entertain us.” 

Daft Punk

daft punk music themed pinball machine

Hiding their faces under robot helmets, the French duo Daft Punk forced audiences to pay more attention to their electronic music than to their looks, and pay attention, they did. Described as a grab bag of disco, rock, funk, pop, and house music, Daft Punk’s debut album Homework transformed clubs and radio stations in 1997. Their sound stayed fresh and fun all the way through their disbandment in 2021.

Given the TRON: Legacy pinball machine already features the music of Daft Punk, it’s easy to see how smoothly the band’s aesthetic would translate into a pinball machine. From “Get Lucky,” to “One More Time,” to “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger,” their song titles, themselves, could hype any pinball player. 

Red Hot Chili Peppers

red hot chili peppers music themed pinball machine

Los Angeles is oversaturated with musicians trying to get noticed, but when four teenagers in the City of Angels met in the early ‘80s and formed a funky rock band called Red Hot Chili Peppers, their eclectic style and hyper live performances led to them becoming one of the best selling bands of all time, not to mention receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame down the street from where they went to high school. 

A theme as simple as California would make the most sense for the Angelenos. Pulling from the “Californication” music video, dodging falling buildings in downtown LA, snowboarding on the Golden Gate Bridge, and riding a dragonfly through the sunny SoCal skies are just a few ideas a pinball machine could offer.  

Wu-Tang Clan

wu-tang clan music themed pinball machine

East Coast hip hop was entering its renaissance period when the NYC-based Wu-Tang Clan released their debut album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) in the early ‘90s. The artists who made up the group - including RZA, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, and Method Mad - also led prosperous solo careers, but in bringing all their talent together they were one of the greatest and most hardcore rap groups ever. 

36 chambers could be found in a Wu-Tang pinball machine, and once completed, a “Shadowboxin’” mode could activate. Just remember to “Protect Ya Neck.”  


abba music themed pinball machine

Their meatballs and fish are delicious, but hands down the best Swedish import is the supergroup ABBA. The foursome won Eurovision in 1974 and have since become one of the best selling artists in pop music, even with the band breaking up for almost 40 years. And despite being the oldest group on this list, surveying by YouGovAmerica shows that ABBA has remained just as famous and popular with Gen Xers and Millennials as they are with their Boomer cohorts. 

ABBA’s outfits were known for being outlandish and vibrant, and a pinball machine with those qualities would turn any player into a “Dancing Queen.” Napoleon at Waterloo, A Man After Midnight, and Fernando are just a few characters whose appearance could get any fan to say “I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do” to this machine.

Since writing this article, we now have an ABBA themed pinball machine in production thanks to Pinball Brothers in Europe.


radiohead music themed pinball machine

Hailing from Oxfordshire, the members of the English rock band Radiohead first met at school in the ‘80s and quickly found success in the music department. Despite their 1993 single “Creep” being one of their most-known songs, they didn’t gain a strong fan base and critical acclaim until years later when their third album OK Computer was released. 

Their songs may sound a bit depressing, but a pinball machine could bring to life concepts ripped from their song titles like “Paranoid Android” and “Karma Police.” Plus, Radiohead’s iconic artwork would make for a visually interesting design, and they’ve shown a willingness to experiment with new mediums and formats. An exclusive new album only available on a pinball machine? One can dream!