Have you ever stepped into a silent casino, sat down at the poker table and had a couple of enjoyable hour’s playing cards? Or like most people, faced with that scenario would you awkwardly loiter at the table until it was okay to leave and go somewhere else?
Every casino in the world has a backdrop of music in-keeping with the image of the venue. In the glamorous setting of Casino de Monte Carlo, gentle classical musical floats around the rooms keeping gamblers calm as they wager high stakes.
Conversely, gaudy Las Vegas casinos will play more upbeat, modern music to keep their punters energised and ready to gamble for longer. You may not realise, but background music has an impact on how you play and for how long.
If you’re just learning the rules of poker or you’re a seasoned pro looking to improve your online game, this article will help you do just that through the power of music.
Why is music important?
Background music is a key, if underrated element of any public building that hosts customers. In retail, experts dedicate weeks to formulating the perfect playlist to keep their clients in store longer and motivate their staff.
Upbeat, fast-paced rhythmic music is often a big no in public stores as it encourages customers to speed up their actions, ultimately leaving the store quicker than usual. That’s why most retail outlets pump out soft, gentle pop music to keep you calm and encourage you to spend longer in store.
You can use these very tactics yourself though, to improve your online poker game and ultimately increase your chances of winning. Below are three songs that you can play next time you log on to suit different scenarios.
Anatii – Thixo Onofefe
26-year-old artist Anatii received his big break 2009 when he received his first major South African placement with L-Tido on ‘When It Rains’. In the preceding years Anatii refined his style before releasing his first studio album Artifact in 2016.
That album catapulted him to success and a host of awards in the process; Anatii has been selected as The Young Independents Influencer of the Year as well as being named the best-dressed South African by GQ.
Away from the accolades and the awards, Anatii has been responsible for some pretty good music, including Thixo Onofefe. This is the perfect song to listen to whilst playing poker as it will get your confidence flowing.
The song is the perfect blend of upbeat rhythms and relaxing musical interludes, which will do your poker game the world of good. Poker often comes down to nerve and having confidence in yourself to make a critical decision.
Thixo Onofefe or pretty much any other song by Anatii will get you in the mood to call your opponents bluff and win big.
Listen to the upbeat tunes of Anatii to get the confidence flowing ahead of an online poker game
Prophets of Da City – Never Again
If you have plans of winning big at poker or placing high in a tournament then you’re going to need a lot of stamina and patience. Even small stakes games can go on for hours and hours, so you’ll need songs to keep you motivated and alert.
If you’re hitting the ‘poker wall’ then you’re going to want to put on some Prophets of Da City (POC) songs to boost your energy and keep you going to the wire. POC first started out in 1988 and are credited by many experts as beginning the wave of South African hip-hop.
Using inspiration from overseas acts they released their first demo ‘Our World’in 1990 which featured unique Cape Town influences in both the music and the lyrics. That spawned a style that would go on to be called Kwaito and influence much of the modern hip-hop that we enjoy today.
Never Again is an iconic song as it is set amongst the backdrop of the end of apartheid, and whilst the lyrics celebrate a black president, it also serves as a pertinent reminder to the nightmares of apartheid.
Kwaito Kings Prophets of Da City will keep you alert and pumped for a long game of poker
Hugh Masekela – Don’t Go Lose It Baby
The late and great Hugh Masekela has been described as the ‘Father of South African Jazz’. His musical career started out in the late 1950s but soon realised that he would have to leave an increasingly brutal and violent South Africa to further his professional development.
After a brief spell in London where he refined his trumpet playing he moved to the United States and began appearing in a series of jazz ensembles. Whilst Stateside Masekela rose to fame with Grazing in the Grass, a song which sold four million copies.
He was known for his upbeat jazz as well as his staunch anti-apartheid feelings, with his song Bring Him Back Home becoming the unofficial anthem of the anti-apartheid movement to free Nelson Mandela.
Whilst there is clear American influence in Don’t Go Lose It Baby, the song features classic African elements, which help to make it a classic song.
Sometimes poker is a game that tests your nerve and gets on top of you. A few bad hands or a streak of bad luck can force you into a glut of bad decisions, so when this happens it’s important to breathe, relax and chill-out.
There’s no better artist than Hugh Masekela to bring your blood pressure back down to normal, and there’s no better track of his than Don’t Go Lose It Baby to do just that.