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Of Music and Gaming: How Jazz Resonates in the World of Casinos



Jazz music and casinos have sort of formed a subliminal bond over the years. Fans hear how the smooth sounds of polyrhythmic instruments complement the clanking of chips and the ringing of jackpots on a busy gaming floor. If that isn’t enough proof, there’s even a musical trio called Casino, which plays a range of jazz tunes from bebop to Latin. Conversely, in Las Vegas, where land based casinos are one of the major contributors to its overall vitality, the jazz scene slowly rises up from the glitz and glamor of the city. Forbes contributor Darren Heitner wrote a piece that detailed the regulated online casino revolution of 2014 and how it resulted to the closure of some land-based establishments. In a nutshell, this more mobile variant of gaming had the upper hand in terms of the convenience and the diversity of its offerings. In fact, the platform still stays, evidently promoting the relationship between music and gaming with eye-catching themes regularly showcased on leading digital portal Spin Genie including a recent ‘Guns N’ Roses’ video slot game and the ever popular ‘Elvis the King Lives’ that tap into varying musical interests. However, one variable that’s going in the favor of land-based casinos is that they have the proper resources and venues to showcase live events. Take the aforementioned Las Vegas, for instance. On the famous Las Vegas Strip, The Mandarin Oriental’s 23rd floor is considered as the haven of fans who want to embrace the pure sophistication of the genre. The Mandarin Bar is an elegant place complete with floor-to-ceiling windows, sumptuous cuisines, and not to mention live jazz bands and singers. Just a couple of miles east of the Strip, there’s The Cellar Bar and Lounge, where many talented upcoming artists perform. Here, regulars enjoy a feast of blues and jazz music, as well as belt out tunes on Saturdays’ open mic nights. When it comes to events, the annual Las Vegas City of Lights Jazz Rhythm and Blues Festival takes the cake. Every April, the almost three-day occasion celebrates the most popular names in both genres at the Clark County Government Amphitheater amidst a beautiful outdoor setting full of lights, sounds, and fans. The JW Marriot Las Vegas Resort and Spa also hosts their own jazz festival albeit in a simpler backdrop. For a handful of days in the middle of September, the event puts a spotlight on the talents of close to 30 jazz and soul artists from all over the United States. The Las Vegas Jazz Festival’s shows take place in the center of the resort with most fans booking concert and hotel packages ahead of time. These days, Las Vegas is more than just a gaming mecca, as it features a plethora of viable entertainment spots. Aside from all its visual spectacles, the city has a long list of bars, clubs, and festivals that highlight anything from the sultry tones of a solo saxophonist to the upbeat energy of big jazz bands. Basically, whether fans like it or not, this easy-on-the-ears music genre will forever be closely associated with the wild and unpredictable world of casinos.

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