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somewhere over the rainbow

somewhere over the rainbow

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Published by Donna Marie
over the rainbow, Brudda Iz, Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, Song of the Century
over the rainbow, Brudda Iz, Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, Song of the Century

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Published by: Donna Marie on Jun 22, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Name:Professor:Course/Subject:Date:Over the Rainbow by Harold Arlen and E.Y. HarburgIntroduction
This song was made popular by Judy Garland in the film
The Wizard of Oz
released in1939; this song maintained the top spot in the
Songs of the Century
of the NationalEndowment of the Arts and Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA and NEA).Back then, the lyrics of the song brought life to the character of Dorothy ± a young girl lost inanother dimension and trying to find her way back home. To the majority, it is a song thatencompasses the ideals, hopes and dreams that can or will be achieved after overcoming anobstacle. This song was recorded by other artists through the years by
The Demensions, Faith Hill, Marusha, Katharine McPhee,
 Israel Kamakawiwo¶ole.
Often, the impression thatartists are no longer innovating and are just relying on other artist¶s past songs is madeespecially for re-made songs. However, upon listening to Israel Kamakawiwo¶ole,¶s, or Bruddah Iz¶s, version of this song, one would feel compelled to listen to the song over andover again; it has brought out something fresh and surprising about this age-old song. TheBruddah Iz version has given a new experience to the song and can be considered as anunforgettable independent piece of art based on a past understanding of the original song.
Over the Rainbow´: The Israel Kamakawiwo¶ole Version
Israel, or Iz, belonged to a small population of 1,500 full-blooded Hawaiians that areremaining on earth. Often he ended concerts by saying,
 My name is Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, I am Hawaiian.´
Iz started a solo career in 1990, leaving the Makaha Sons of Ni¶ihau andreleased his solo album entitled ³Facing Future´ in 1993; this album up until now remains to
 be the top-selling albums worldwide. This song has been heard on different film andtelevision soundtracks from
First Dates, Meet Joe Black, Finding Forrester, Charmed, ER, Party of Five
to name a few. The album reached Platinum in 2005. Iz has brought the artistry of Hawaii to a global awareness and recognition.The song does not immediately begin with the first line; instead Iz oohs first in asimilar tune. This makes the listener think that the artist is presenting a song that is morereflective than pining.Iz¶s voice in this song was carried through with a soothing and airyvoice that makes the song feel Hawaiian, echoing appropriately through each note. Hechanges tones effortlessly, seemingly floating from notes that are rich and basal into highelivelier tones. His transition to another song rendition of 
What a Wonderful World,
which was popularized by Louis Armstrong, in the middle of the song, is just seamless. His voice is likea warm blanket on a cold night, wrapped around the body for comfort; it emanates care, joy,softness, comfort, hope and love.Iz makes use of the ukulele in this rendition, and the result was a softer and gentler sound that does not overpower his voice and at the same time gives more power to itsHawaiian background.The harmony presents different arrangements of similar chords lead todifferent notes; and a constant and rhythmic pattern while playing the ukulele is heard. Thisrelaxing and rhythmic beat leads to an artistic experience that makes the listener go back for more.Over the Rainbow has captured the essence of Hawaii, voicing out
or hiddenmessages reflecting Iz¶s love for Hawaii and his endeavor of protecting its culture, and ageneral sadness about his country¶s history of becoming appropriatedunlawfully by theUnited States in 1898. In the beginning of the song we hear Iz say
¶K, this one¶s for Gabby,´
who is known to be the master of slack-key guitar Charles Philip ³Gabby´ Pahinuiwho died in 1980. He acted as Iz¶s inspiration as he also supported the Hawaiian Cultural
Renaissance since the 1970s. His dedication to Gabby enlisted the song to Hawaiian culturenationalism.At the latter part of the song, Iz reverts to
Over the Rainbow
and gives more depth tothe end phrase which was different from Judy Garland¶s version:³
Oh, somewhere over the rainbow,Way up high And the dreams that you dare toWhy, o why can¶t I´ 
This song again emphasizes reflection, raising optimism to the listeners in general; itimplies that the current state of the audience can still be improved, that anyone can still hopefor more. In behalf of Hawaii, the song can be seen as a call to maintain and improve on theculture, and perhaps aim for freedom and recognition.
Music can express deeply-felt sentiments; consequently it can also bring out adifferent emotion from the listeners.Israel Kamakawiwo'ole has not been able to experiencethe fame and recognition that his music has brought; nor has he been able to know themagnitude of lives he has touched through his songs. He died in 199 at the age of 38, hisremains were viewed in Hawaii¶s Capitol building, and the state flag was flown at half- mast.His ashes were scattered in Makua Beach and was witnessed by thousands of people. Anordinary listener would gain inspiration and hope, as well as a calming realization thattomorrow or a time over the rainbow would lead to a better life. For the citizens of Hawaii aswell as the dwindling number of pure Hawaiians, the song inspires hope and courage insustaining and developing a culture that is nearly erased. His rendition of this song has beenthe most downloaded version of the song in iTunes. He inspired artists such as Dean Koontz,Adam Sandler, Konishiki, and John Favreau.

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