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The World Famous Machine Shop in Flint, Mi. Photo: Mintypics

Anyone who has any inkling of the Machine Shop knows about the hallway and the “hallway photos” that photographer Jeff “Minty” Mintline takes. It’s become quite a thing for the bands, fans, and even crews that come by the “Shop” in Flint, Michigan.

I’ll never forget the first time I was in the famous hallway at the Machine Shop. I walked in the side door and realized I was standing in it! I had no idea. “Minty” said the bands say the same thing. He says they think it’s going to be bigger, or in a different location of the venue, as did I.

I was curious as to how this whole thing started. “Minty” told me the first picture is the Exies in 2007. He said that singer Scott Stevens wanted a picture with the band. Guitarist Chris Skane said, “Let’s do it back here in the hallway.” That was the first, for a while. There wasn’t another picture taken in that location until the spring of 2010. The next bands were Smile Empty Soul and Skindred….and that’s how the hallway photos were born! You can see that first picture below.

How many band pictures have been taken? “Minty” says it’s around 1,300. As far as fans from around the world taking pictures back there? “It happens constantly” he said. I’ve personally witnessed that myself.

I was also there when one guy in a band wouldn’t do it. I’ll keep that to myself, as well as which country artist passed because they didn’t like the flash. Fair enough, I suppose.

Bret Micheals’ tour manager said that he wouldn’t do it. Owner Kevin Zink rolled with the punches and asked if the rest of the band wouldn’t mind, since many of them have played there in the past. They obliged, and while the picture was being taken, Bret walked in and asked what was going on. After he was informed of the picture, he didn’t hesitate to get in. Having been around him a few times, that didn’t surprise me at all.

According to Minty, every band is more than fired up to take a picture in the famous hallway. “It’s almost turned into a rite of passage type of thing” It really has, as the pictures prove!

Thank you to “Minty” for filling me in on the backstory, and suppling all of these killer shots! Have a look!

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