MUSIC MONDAY: Israel Kamakawiwo’ole transformed classic “Over The Rainbow”

After a wintry weekend in Washington DC, NPR dug deep in its archive for a tropical note and featured a story of how the late Hawaiian musician Israel Kamakawiwo’ole recreated a classic song with his ukulele and his special voice. His version of “Over the Rainbow” written by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg has become a modern classic, used in a number of movies like “Meet Joe Black” and “50 First Dates” and the television show “ER.”

Read more about Israel Kamakawiwo’ole:

[NPR] Israel Kamakawiwo’ole: The Voice Of Hawaii: “When our time come, don’t cry for me. Don’t cry for me. Plant a tree in the middle … where they play soccer,” he laughs. “Kind of small, then I’ll grow big.”

[Mountain Apple Company] Israel “IZ” Kamakawiwo’ole: “For reasons that cannot be adequately explained or understood, people feel good when they hear his voice, they feel safe and they feel happy. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you are from. It doesn’t matter whether you are a truck driver or a movie star.”

[Official Website of Israel “IZ” Kamakawiwo’ole]
Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s Autobiography: “At that moment it showed me that whatever we think or do a parent’s love for a child or children is above all the strongest bond in the universe. Boy it’s tough writing all this stuff.” (edited)
Biography by producer Jon de Mello: “They named him Israel Ka’ano’i Kamakawiwo’ole. In Hawaiian his last name translates “the fearless eye, the bold face.”

[YouTube] “50 First Dates”

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