There was a time when music in Las Vegas meant fading stars looking to find a regular income, or novelty acts that became as much a part of the Strip as the lights and roulette wheels.
Now, as we move into a new decade, the city has been reinvented as a top venue for the most current artists in the world and that’s having a huge impact on the casino industry, which has always been the primary source of income in Sin City.
The sixties and seventies saw many artists move into casinos. Certain artists even became synonymous with Vegas throughout the last century. Liberace was perhaps one of the first to make serious money in Vegas, with CBS News explaining how he earned $50,000 per week (₹3.5 million) with a residency at the Riviera.
Perhaps one of the most famous artists to set up shop in Vegas was Elvis Presley. He experienced a surge in his popularity after joining the International in 1969. By the time he performed his final Vegas gig in late 1976, he had done 837 shows. However, all artists ended up becoming part of the furniture and Elvis’ final years are defined by his stint.
Elvis is perhaps the first example of an artist becoming popular on the back of his Vegas spell, but rarely did the most current acts in the world make Vegas their base. In recent years, that has changed with a large number of notable mainstream artists enjoying their time in Vegas. Lady Gaga is perhaps one of the most notable; she agreed a two-year stint at the Park MGM, but has hinted to the Las Vegas Review Journal that she may consider a further year.
The main reason for this reliance on musical acts is due to casinos and gaming establishments having to find new and innovative ways to keep their share of the current gaming market in the face of competition from non-traditional genres. Yahoo explains how PPPoker are developing a new social angle to online gaming by introducing a fresh approach to how players interact and compete. With options for home-based play improving and developing all of the time, it could have a significant impact on people wanting to go to physical, bricks and mortar casinos. That is a major threat to the future of Las Vegas and as such, they’re becoming more flexible and creative in enticing clients to physical buildings.
And Gaga isn’t the only big star to take up a residency in recent years as Vegas fights off the challenge of an expanding online gaming threat. Bruno Mars has also appeared at the MGM Park Theater in a series of successful shows, whilst rapper Pitbull also brings relevant, contemporary music to the streets of Vegas. Pitbull has had multiple number one hits over his career in 15 countries and has recently been involved in remixing Canadian duo Loud Luxury’s breakthrough hit ‘Body’.
As the spectre of online gaming rises up to cast a shadow over the City of Lights and as technology advances to a stage where a genuine casino experience can be delivered direct to your phone or mobile device, Las Vegas is being forced to adapt and change to entice and retain their existing customers. By attracting the biggest artists in the world, at the height of their fame, they’re offering something new to visitors and tourists.
The changing shift in attitudes by the world’s top artists to playing in the city is a major step in ensuring the city remains relevant and attractive for generations to come.
Header image credit – Pixabay