Don Schlitz wrote and recorded "The Gambler" in 1978 when it reached the country charts. The Grammy winner also composed "Forever and Ever, Amen", "On the Other Hand" and "When You Say Nothing At All". Kenny Rogers inducted him into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2012.

The Kenny Rogers cover from the album of the same name made it to the number one spot on the country chart and top the twenty pop in 1979. Of course there was a 1980 movie starring Kenny based on the song.