Facing Future

Facing Future

by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole
4.6 17

CD

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Overview

Facing Future

The late Hawaiian star Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, a gentle 750-pound giant who passed away in 1997, is an unlikely candidate for a career renaissance. But thanks to popular films such as Finding Forrester and Meet Joe Black and TV shows from Party of Five to Picket Fences, the music of the man called Iz lives on. Recording with his brother Skippy in the '70s as the Makaha Sons, Iz's high tenor and fluttering falsetto -- think Roy Orbison in a sarong -- accompanied simple melodies plucked on ukulele. His solo career began after Skippy's death in 1982, and while his lyrics remain Hawaii-centric (and often in Hawaiian) and he is usually backed with uke and slack-key guitar, Facing Future moves in more contemporary directions. Iz's version of "Take Me Home, Country Road" owes more to Toots and the Maytals than to John Denver, and the synth-heavy "Maui Hawaiian Sup'pa Man" shows the bluesier, gruff side of Iz's vocal talent. The highlight of the collection is the medley "Somewhere over the Rainbow/ What a Wonderful World" which Iz dedicates to slack-key legend Gabby Pahinui. Over a spare uke strum, he shows off his breathy, soulful lower register, then soars higher into a supple falsetto -- without a trace of pretense or treacle. To ears under assault from overproduced, insincere pop, that simple, joyful directness makes the music of this no-longer-obscure artist such a welcome tonic.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/14/1995
Label: Big Boy Records
UPC: 0761268590121
catalogNumber: 5901
Rank: 778

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Facing Future 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Not in recent time has a voice stirred my soul like Isreal Kamakawiwo'ole's. A voice of an angel I thought when I heard him, only to find that I was right. I was saddened to learn that my new found friend had already passed on to a place much better then we know here. This album, Facing Future, will soothe the soul of the most savage beast. It is a compilation of sun drenched, blue water island music, a beautiful Hawaiian version of John Denver's "Country Roads" and an arrangement of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World" that will leave you tapping your foot never wanting it to end. I know in my heart that from on high Judy Garland was throwing Iz her famous big kiss and Louis Armstrong was flashing his huge toothy grin saying "Yeahhhh" when they heard Isreal do his rendition of their trade mark songs and as for John Denver, well I know John was looking down hollering, "Far Out!!". It seems so right that one day Iz would share a cloud with the likes of Louis, Judy and John but Iz, was a man a head of his time and that included his tragic death at such a young age. Iz left behind a following of many folks. Unfortunately, like myself, many never knew he existed until after he was gone, but he left a piece of himself behind for us to enjoy in the form of his wonderful music. So, when everything in your life seems to have gone a bit awry, put Facing Future into your player, lean back, close your eyes and let him make it all right. As you listen to Iz and you think your hearing the voice of an angel remember........you really are. Aloha Iz.......
spirit4 More than 1 year ago
Yes I agree with all the songs described as so beautiful that people in the states or from the states love as they identify them with such feeling. But what I love so very much is his speaking out loud and clear about what would their people say if they could come back and see what has been done to their beautiful land. The Hawaii of today can thank it's country to the ministers and politicians that took Hawaii away from them back in the day when they locked Liliokilani in her beautiful mansion and convinced her christian religion was the only religion and speaking english was the only religion. These people lost THEIR religion and slowly stopped speaking THEIR language and only recently THEIR language is ALLOWED to be spoken and taught in the schools again. I love him for speaking of this in his songs. I know there are many others that are speaking out too, but there are so very few native Hawaiians left, but others that help are needed too. Just do your homework and you may be surprised to find this history out. So thank you Iz for getting some of this information out to the "haoles" and maybe they will come to appreciate that Hawaii isn't another Disneyland-as they have so crasly built there, but a precious land with their own laws, language and way of religion/belief. I dearly love you sense of humor, giggle, and beautiful voice as you sing all your songs. Your voice and songs are missed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We bought this CD for the medley of Over The Rainbow/It's a Wonderful World and were awed by all the other songs. We live in tropical Minnesota and this was wonderful to listen to while driving in blizzard conditons during the holidays.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I heard his work first in the soundtrack of the Finding Forester. He is so good like my brother singing next to me. I don't have one but now I do. IZ is very down to earth and heavenly good. I know he will always be with me, whereever I go.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just discovered Iz! His voice and renditions are wonderful. I especially love "Over the Rainbow". Gail Jayne FL
Guest More than 1 year ago
This cd is absolutely wonderful! It is great to chill and listen to. You are instantly in a happy place while listening to it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
By comforting I mean that it is comforting to know that Iz lives on in the hearts of so many. I have been an Iz fan for many years and when I began to see his music used on television programs and commercials I didn't like it very much. I thought that it was sort of wrong to take advantage of the man's music after his death; to use it only for the gain of others that cared little about the man or his music. It took me a while to see that it inspired others in this way, and they too began to seek out his music and to understand that it's more than just a jingle. It gives you a very deep and profound feeling and you feel good. I'm glad it comforts others the way it comforts me, and I hope you all realize that Iz is not really gone. He lives on in his music.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I recently installed a Tiki Bar in my 1980 Buick and needed appropriate accompyaning music, after buying the Facing Future CD mostly for this humorous purpose, I discovered that it is a very well done CD, and perfect to kick back and relax to. Not poppy or hard to listen to at all.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Everyone from the born in the taro patch to the eastcoast haole will love the music of Irael Kamakawaole. He was a gentle giant of a man and I'm sooo glad his music lives on. You can hear him on albums with Makaha Sons of Niihau as well as Hawaiian Style Band with Sistah Robi. Check it out - it's all good!! Mahalo for this opportunity - Dahmia
Guest More than 1 year ago
Having just returned from a Hawaiian vacation, one of the unexpected pleasures was hearing the voice of Iz Kamakawiwo'ole coming at me from a jukebox in a hole in the wall pancake place on Kau'i, as well on several Hawaiian radio stations. This is true Hawaiian folk music, much of it sung in the native tongue. His voice is superb, Over the Rainbow just being the best known example of that to mainlander ears. Listen to Kuhio Bay, or White Sandy Beach of Hawai'i to get a sense of the real sound and to soothe your soul. The music is the aural equivalent of a Hawaiian sunset, or beautiful waterfall. You will listen to this music when you want peace, calm and tranquility, (and perhaps a chuckle as you listen to the Hawaiianization of Take Me Home, Country Road).
Aunt_Debbie More than 1 year ago
What can one say? The album is the best as he was the best.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What a wonderful group of songs to listen to. It only saddens me that the world will never get to hear another new IZ creation! How can one person bring such a multitude of emotions out of the listener? What a purely spiritually talented man. Mahalo IZ! The world misses you.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Bradda Iz had one of the most melodic voices in contemporary Hawaiian music. The first track is my favorite for his use of Hawaiian and English to tell the story of a changing Hawaiian society. This album also has the medley of Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World that has been on ER and in a few movies. The only downpoint of this album is Iz's rendition of Country Roads. John Denver sang it better. Overall, this is a wonderful album to help you escape your daily stress. Highly Recommended.
MustHaveMountains More than 1 year ago
Brudda' Iz had such a sweet voice. I love the traditional Hawaiian songs on this album, his own songs, and I love his renderings of non-Hawaiian tunes too - like his much-played version here of "Over the Rainbow." I hear him played still when I travel to Hawaii. Too bad his time on Earth was so short.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago