Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole
     
 

A virtual unknown outside his native Hawaii before his tragic weight-related death at the age of 38 in 1997, larger-than-life vocalist Israel Kamakawiwo'ole has since become a posthumous musical icon thanks to the ubiquitous use of his songs on various TV and film soundtracks. Following 2001's Over the Rainbow, a hodgepodge of unreleased material and unpluggedSee more details below

Overview

A virtual unknown outside his native Hawaii before his tragic weight-related death at the age of 38 in 1997, larger-than-life vocalist Israel Kamakawiwo'ole has since become a posthumous musical icon thanks to the ubiquitous use of his songs on various TV and film soundtracks. Following 2001's Over the Rainbow, a hodgepodge of unreleased material and unplugged performances, and 2007's Wonderful World, a collection of new arrangements produced by Jon de Mello, Somewhere Over the Rainbow is the third major solo compilation to be released since he passed away, gathering material from 1993's Facing Future, 1995's E Ala E, and 1996's N Dis Life. Unsurprisingly, his gorgeous ukulele-based interpretations of Judy Garland's "Over the Rainbow" and Louis Armstrong's "What a Wonderful World," both of which retain the poignancy of the originals while showcasing Iz's pure soothing Johnny Mathis-esque vocals, will undoubtedly be the most recognizable of the album's 13 tracks. Featured here separately rather than the amalgamation that has appeared on the likes of Meet Joe Black, ER, and Lost, the two hugely popular songs are undeniably his career best, but plenty of other lesser-known gems wait to be discovered among the collection of cover versions, traditional Hawaiian favorites, hapa haole recordings, and Jawaiian songs. "Hawai'i '78" is a melancholic but passionate string-soaked lament to the passing of his native culture, "Wind Beneath My Wings" is an emotive gentle-plucking take on the Bette Midler classic that effortlessly segues into the tribal rhythms and native-tongued delivery of "He Hawai'i Au," and "Hele On To Kaua'i" and "Ka Pua U'i" are the kinds of lilting sun-soaked ditties that have the power to instantly transport you to the beaches of Honolulu. The omission of any tracks from his 1990 debut Ka' Ano'i and his four albums recorded with Makaha Sons of Ni'ihau means that Somewhere Over the Rainbow isn't as comprehensive as it could have been, but for those only familiar with his two signature tunes, it's a cleverly selected introduction to a sorely missed vocal talent.

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Product Details

Release Date:
01/11/2011
Label:
Universal Uk
UPC:
0602527500614
catalogNumber:
2750061
Rank:
2263

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Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Israel Kamakawiwo'ole   Primary Artist

Technical Credits

Harold Arlen   Composer
Larry Henley   Composer
E.Y. "Yip" Harburg   Composer
Mike Reid   Composer
Allen Shamblin   Composer
George David Weiss   Composer
Israel Kamakawiwo'ole   Producer
Jeff Sibar   Composer
Jon de Mello   Producer
Bina Mossman   Composer
Irmgard Aluli   Composer
Harry Na'ope   Composer
George Douglas AKA Bob Thiele   Composer
Alice Na'ai   Composer
George Keahi   Composer
Mickey Ioane   Composer
Duc Huy   Composer
Nobriga   Composer
Elizabeth Kapeka Kuahuia   Composer
Sam Li'a Kalanianina   Composer

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