The Gambler Lyrics - Kenny Rogers

Review The Song (29)



On a warm summer's eve
On a train bound for nowhere
I met up with the gambler
We were both too tired to sleep
So we took turns a-starin'
Out the window at the darkness
The boredom overtook us, and he began to speak

He said, "Son, I've made my life
Out of readin' people's faces
Knowin' what the cards were
By the way they held their eyes
So if you don't mind my sayin'
I can see you're out of aces
For a taste of your whiskey
I'll give you some advice"

So I handed him my bottle
And he drank down my last swallow
Then he bummed a cigarette
And asked me for a light
And the night got deathly quiet
And his faced lost all expression
He said, "If you're gonna play the game, boy
You gotta learn to play it right

You've got to know when to hold 'em
Know when to fold 'em
Know when to walk away
Know when to run
You never count your money
When you're sittin' at the table
There'll be time enough for countin'
When the dealin's done

Now every gambler knows the secret to survivin'
Is knowin' what to throw away
And knowin' what to keep
'Cause every hand's a winner
And every hand's a loser
And the best that you can hope for
Is to die in your sleep"

So when he finished speakin'
He turned back for the window
Crushed out his cigarette
And faded off to sleep then somewhere in the darkness
The gambler he broke even,
but in his final words
I found an ace that I could keep

You've got to know when to hold 'em
Know when to fold 'em
Know when to walk away
know when to run
You never count your money
When you're sittin' at the table
There'll be time enough for countin'
When the dealin's done

You've got to know when to hold 'em
(When to hold 'em)
Know when to fold 'em
(When to fold 'em)
Know when to walk away
know when to run
You never count your money
When you're sittin' at the table
There'll be time enough for countin'
When the dealin's done

You've got to know when to hold 'em
Know when to fold 'em
Know when to walk away
know when to run
You never count your money
When you're sittin' at the table
There'll be time enough for countin'
When the dealin's done






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Rogers' best: Secrets | Reviewer: someone | 8/29/14

I happened to pay more attention to the lyrics of this song n realised they carried very deep thoughts and messages. God bless Kenny for his good work. They do not only depict gambling strategies but the actual secrets and orders of life. Thumbs up Rogers!!!

A song that teaches life | Reviewer: Poppy Adamz | 8/22/14

this song is a clear manifestation that music is not only a platform for entertainment rather it is educative in nature. As it is beautifully stated in d song gamber "On a train bound no where"is enough lesson that tells us that eventhough we see with our eyes yet we are blind no one knows what tomorrow holds for us. U can be living in this minute n d next minute u gone so be warned. Who on earth can tell me d day he s gonna die/how he s gonna die n d exact minute. indisputed fact that we are blinds that live in hopes n dreams. some come some dont. when u are opportuned work hard n throw away life long opportunity know how to play ur cards n live up right. this song entail words of wisdom

A lesson for all of us | Reviewer: Gene Schmuckler | 7/4/14

I have used the Gambler on many ocassions when giving presentations to public safety personnel.The song has gained the attention of a good number of those who have the opportunity of listenting to do it.

hard-boiled lyrics with a bounce | Reviewer: Lightninrick | 11/26/13

The lyrics of this song are grim from the start: "on a train bound to nowhere," "we were both too tired to sleep," "the night got deathly quiet and his face lost all expression," "the best you can hope for is to die in your sleep." That's some pretty tough stuff: life sucks and then you die. The speaker could be a hard-boiled hood or detective from a James Cain novel. If the lyrics were all there was to this tune, it would be a real bummer. The bouncy rhythm and the bright, simple melody are what cues us to the hope in the song, which is the idea that we can control our own fates through alertness and attitude ("know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em"). Life is a gamble, but every hand's a winner (and a loser, too). Make the right moves and you'll break even too. The metaphor of life as a gamble is powerful, and this song manages to express the hard edge of the metaphor and the hope in it all at once. It's quite an achievement to put that tough message across without driving the audience away.

nice song. | Reviewer: Anonymous | 10/29/13

just like the game,we all have aces on our hands,you never know the cards on your opponent's hands.these cards are to be used against you and the only way to conger them is by "holding on" the master card which in this case is JESUS CHRIST. Accept him n you will finally sit to enjoy your wealth in heaven. Be blessed gumblers...

analogy of card for life(ilove the song to the end) | Reviewer: jonas uka | 10/23/13

the song is owesome ,symbolic n educative.we all make life by reading n judging situations we encounter in our way to success n we shuold also not count our chicks before they are hatched.n life entails loosing n succeeding hence experience is the best teacher.

Is reflects our way of thinking n doubting each other. | Reviewer: Tintswalo Rapula | 8/18/13

D moral of dis song is dat we sometimes do somethings in a spare of a moment,n we don't use d litle opportunities dat we r given 2fulfill whatever we do at dat time n when not achieved we tend 2 blame d others.so in order 2 win d game u hav 2 know how 2 hold d card carefully n play dem in d right way n know wen 2 stop n always be onguard. Life is pretious n we don't notice n in death our bones cannot b differentiated.

My Thoughts | Reviewer: John Ve | 8/12/13

Lot of wisdom here. Simple but after 64 years of testing theory I can say it is all true. I've had a good life and was delt many hands. Some I played right others I didn't know when to run. I had many days in the sunshine probably just as many in the rain. And now I also hope to die in my sleep.

Secret of a Gambler | Reviewer: Prosper Kandemiiri | 7/31/13

if you know when, and what to throw and know when to hold, know when to fold, walk away, and when to run, that's life's crucial secret at every situation. Some say a good guest knows when to leave the house. It's all about knowing the best time to break even. When to put all yo eggs in one basket and when not to sow at all. I leant a lot Kenny thanks.

The Gambler's advice | Reviewer: Munyaradzi Benjamin | 7/24/13

This is probably the best lesson I have learnt in a long time. It is just awesome to see what a simple song can do to shape our lives. There is a time for everything but what matters most is whether or not the timing is good. I surely have also found an ace in the Gambler's advice that I intent to keep for the rest of my life.

Strategy for life | Reviewer: Anonymous | 4/17/13

This song is about the strategy of life. Know when to hold em (know when to stay) know when to fold em )know when to give up on something or someone and try something or someone else. Know when to run - know when to get the hell out of your situation quickly for your own sake. You never count your money, sitting at the table (never let people know your game plan or be too complacent about your luck or winnings - because things could change in a heartbeat)and there'll be time enough for counting when the dealing is done. (when it is all clear and on the table) In the end, we all break even. We are all the same in the end. The game is a strategy for coping with life but in the end we all die and we're equal.

fold 'em | Reviewer: jani | 11/24/12

It's a great song this. Whenever I hear it, I can picture a smoky back room, a naked light bulb over a card table, with a few sleazy-looking characters hunched over, beers all round and broken dreams.

Real. | Reviewer: Ryan Ray Jnr Banks | 11/18/12

Dats a gud song wit agud advice.thumbs up to yu Roggers for yo song iz rily touchin.yu should knw hw to play de game 4 yu 2survive,'every gambler knows the secret to survivin' kul dat.

Leaving a bad situation behind | Reviewer: Anonymous | 10/28/12

Life is like a card game in which we don't have much control over the hands we're dealt. Success in life, or even just getting through, depends on knowing that we can either hold the cards we're dealt, or fold them and walk away to try again in another time and place. Knowing this, that we're not limited by what's immediately before us, is an "ace" we can keep. Nice insight, Kenny!

A Reality | Reviewer: Barnabas K. Ruto | 9/26/12

The song reveals our ultimate destination in life.AS in a race,many participates but only the determined,calculative athletes emerges the winners.In life,we all starts from the same point,but ends up in different destinations,depending on how one played his own cards.Others ends up being the greatest engineers,doctors and leaders,while others ends up being robbers,terrorists and miserable people.Gamble smartly


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------ Performed by Kenny Rogers

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------ 11/23/2014

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