Stefano skis to The Uptones. The skiing is beautiful. The Swiss Ski Camp looks like gr8 fun.
Watch a poker tournament on TV and all you’re likely to hear are the voices of the commentators describing the action for those of us who don’t know the difference between betting on the pre-flop and c-betting the turn. There’s no hard-driving soundtrack, no arena music to pump the players up. There aren’t even any MP3 players on the final table.
Despite what the televised games show, music has become a very big aspect in poker. Attend a tournament and you’ll see a veritable sea of headphone-clad poker players. It’s not just the amateurs and newcomers, either. The pros, the best of the best like Daniel Negreanu, Antonio Esfandiari, and Phil Ivey have their own go-to headphones. Former Beats manufacturer turned rival Monster has even signed on to sponsor and provide free headphones to the Partypoker-owned World Poker Tour.
One of the main uses of music in the poker world is to help players get pumped up once they hit a slump or fall into a rut. On that note, what better way to pump up the action than with a little freestyle skanking? Here are three ska songs that will make for great additions to your poker playlist, whether you plan on playing in a tournament or are just preparing for your weekly home game.
Unyielding Conditioning by Fishbone – It’s always good to start things off on a positive note, be it lyrically, thematically, or musically. And speaking of Fishbone, the band has a large enough discography full of great songs to add to your ska-centric poker playlist. Heck, you can pretty much put on the entire “Give A Monkey A Brain And He’ll Swear He’s The Center Of The Universe” album and you’re good to go.
Solar Disco Ball by The Uptones – There comes a point in every poker game where you have to try your hardest to concentrate on the current hand. Singing along to the lyrics can get in the way of that, but if you put on an instrumental like the horn-driven Solar Disco Ball (or, say, the organ-heavy Dr. Phibes by The Busters) you can give your brain a break and let it turn its full attention to getting out of a potentially sticky situation.
King of Kings by Prince Buster & The Skatalites – Is there a better victory theme song than this cover of the Jimmy Cliff original by legendary reggae and ska pioneer Prince Buster? Please try to resist the urge to put this on every time you win a hand, though. Yes, it’s fun, but your fellow players might think it’s bad form.
This halloween, Brittany Laubsch carved a brilliant jack-o-lantern rendition of Buster the Ska Doggie:
Our mascot, drawn by Jesse Michaels, first appeared on the cover of the Skankin’ Foolz Unite! CD:
Since then, he has become quite the worldly hound, sneaking out of Uptones headquarters and showing up in the darndest places.
Here is Buster getting ready for a footrace:
What’s your best Buster image? Send it in! We’ll make a photo album with the best entries, credit you on our site, and you’ll win skaliday prizes. You can Tweet it to us @Uptones or post it on our Facebook.
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