What is the Best Music for a Poker Night

Congratulations and celebrations are in order – you’re hosting a poker night! For all the players out there, it’s important to know that mood creates ambience, and that’s everything when it comes to a successful poker night. Think of the house parties you attended over the years – what made the great parties stand out from the mediocre ones? It was probably the mise en scène and the decor, furniture, scenery, accoutrements, lighting, and sound? The right mood is everything, and what better way to hit the high notes than premium-grade beats pumping out of your JBL Bluetooth subwoofer. The most successful poker nights are the ones that elicit strong emotional reactions from players. It’s not so much about winning or losing – it’s the camaraderie of the event, the gathering of the folk, and the revelry that ensues. To this end, we pay tribute to the music – the high notes, low notes, bass, and beats that get the party started.

What to Do with a Group of Guys and Gals Wanting to Play Poker?

A poker night is a soirée of sorts. It is a friendly pow-wow with the potential to become the highlight of your social calendar. Poker is a game of wits, skills, and strategies. According to USGS, it’s about managing your bankroll to perfection, fine-tuning your mental acuity, sharpening your psychological insights into other players, and learning how to pace yourself so that you can take down monster pots. Guys and gals who enjoy poker routinely tout the merits of this game. Although the background music is hardly ever referenced, it is one of those subliminal elements that can transform a seemingly mundane event into an action-packed evening. Planning is sacrosanct – nothing occurs by happenstance. Put the wrong music on, and you run the risk of the evening closing out early. Plan well, and you’ll enjoy an adrenaline-infused poker night with friends.

Music rocks! It is a symphony of sounds, or an inspirational tour de force in acoustics. It’s striking the right notes with all players in attendance. That’s why planning and preparation are needed. It all begins with the guest list. Which guys and gals are you inviting to your hip, hop and happening poker night? Chances are you know the music preferences of your close friends, family, and colleagues, but it never hurts to get some feedback. Email invites are a great way to focus on bullet points for your poker night. Who’s bringing beer and wine? Who’s bringing snacks? Who’s bringing a playlist? Who’s hosting the poker night? Once the answers to these questions are known, it’s time to drill down into specifics. Are you going to go with a low key musical score with jazz playing in the background? Or are you going to up the ante with hip-hop, top 40, or classic rock? There are more musical options than you can imagine – that’s why it’s important to stick to a genre and pick the crème de la crème from within that category.

Does the Intensity of the Action Need to Dovetail with the Music?

The Main Event of the WSOP has enough palpable drama taking place that no music is needed. The intensity of high-stakes poker warrants the sanctity of silence. However, a home-based poker game isn’t near that level of play, so it’s totally okay to create the right mood and setting with music. Nobody’s advocating for elevator music that they play in hotels or casinos – those jingles will soon get on your nerves. However, instrumental music sans the vocals is often preferred by players in casinos, poker rooms and home-based poker games. You may wish to pick a timeless playlist with classic favorites, or jazz it up with new age funk, house, and hip-hop. Player demographics are perhaps the most important determinant of the musical score that will accompany your poker evening.

A young and trendy crowd is unlikely to express much interest in Beethoven, Bach, Schubert, Mozart, and other classic maestros. However, they will certainly warm up to Sean Paul, Mr Vegas, Elephant Man, Beenie Man, Shaggy, Vybz Kartel, T.O.K and even Mavado. For the evergreen rap fans, there’s always Snoop Dogg, Eminem, 50 Cent, Dr Dre, Lil Baby, Flatbush Zombies, and Nipsey Hussle. If the hustle and bustle is not your thing, there’s always classy music. Your poker buddies are going to get pretty bored if you’re simply dealing cards and munching on Doritos and Cheetohs all night long. Music is a terrific accoutrement to strike the right mood. According to the Escapist Magazine, it really depends on the type of mood that you trying to create. There is no one-size-fits-all strategy that can be adopted for a poker night with friends. You may wish to go with music without lyrics, music with a few lyrics, or lots of base.

Bring A Few Musical Greats to Your Poker Night

We could get cheesy and tell you to play Lady Gaga – Poker Face, but that’s a little over the top. Some players recommend avoiding jazz entirely and opting for the blues. If you’re looking to elicit a few laughs from your friends, you may be interested in something like the 007 theme song. Perhaps even the jingle to the Pink Panther? Poker is played by people with mathematical prowess and that means these folks have a great memory. If you can harken back to a time when things were exciting and enjoyable – like the 80s or 90s, you may just hit the right notes with the Texas Holdem crew. For an older crowd, Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Ray Charles, Randy Crawford, Billy Joel, Elton John, Paul McCartney, and others will always go down well. The Eagles, the Bee Gees, The Platters, the Pretenders –  these are groups that have stood the test of time. You can’t go wrong when your poker night is being graced by the silky voices of these legends!