Over the course of innumerable songs over hundreds of years, some of the same themes are bound to pop up again and again. One such theme is that of gambling. While this might feel like a rather straightforward note for a song to play, different approaches are going to be favored by varying artists. Furthermore, while some of these might be about gambling on the surface, it could be that this topic is being used as a cover or allegory for a deeper theme.

In any case, reviewing a few examples can highlight whether or not they’re worth your time and what the thematic content could reveal – if anything at all.

The Gambler

This Kenny Rogers classic is pretty direct with the title, though the laconic and relaxed tone of the opening can ease you into the intrigue of the story being told. While it becomes quickly apparent that the advice being regaled to the protagonist by the gambler is just as applicable to broader life as it is about gambling, that doesn’t stop it from landing as it should. Stories of strangers and chance encounters combine with the country genre and conjure up as classic an American image as any, and that’s what carries this song.

The Johnny Cash cover initially takes on a more talkative tone than the outright musical approach from Rogers’ version, though that definitely changes by the end. Taste is subjective, and there is a good argument to be made for either version in this instance, though the difference might not be as stark as other Cash covers.

Viva Las Vegas

Straight off the bat, this is easily identifiable as being an Elvis song, even if you didn’t have that knowledge already through how well-known it is. The fast pace and general excitement, with the consistent tune in the background, can conjure up images of the city in question and all it offers. The vocals bring additional attention to that, and his mention of the roulette wheel can feel especially apt for the vibe that’s created by this looping energy. Trusted outlets like jackpotcitycasino.com can offer you access to online pokies that help you to understand this connection closer, the music, colors and continued energy of slot games that offer the consistent allure of a potential win.

Poker Face

Lady Gaga’s 2008 pop song “Poker Face” remains a fond classic for many who remember it, and once again, the gambling motif is used very much as a thin metaphor – this time for the dynamic Gaga is describing between her and a prospective lover. With the repetition of lyrics and general simplicity of the song, it might be easy to write this off as something that’s endured the test of time through sheer nostalgia, but it takes craft to cultivate a catchy pop song. While that sense of familiar ground might wear thin by the end of the song, it still does enough to stand as distinct and memorable among the pop song catalogue – even if it’s not breaking new ground in the Lady Gaga library.

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Featured image: (C) Amit Lahav @amitlhv