Even more than 20 years after his death, Israel Kamakawiwo’ole is a Hawaiian national hero – and world famous. He no longer saw his greatest success. For his song “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” (1993), gold, silver and platinum hailed only years after his death (1997). Google honors the Hawaiian musician with the ukulele today with a moving Google Doodle: Kamakawiwo’ole would have been 61 today.
Little Israel receives a ukulele from his mother, he gets older and plays wherever he is: on the beach, in the mountains, for the neighboring children. The clip shows Kamakawiwo’ole’s attachment to his homeland: he was born on the island of Oahu (20.5.1959), he died on Oahu (26.6.1997).
The moving track also went to the hearts of the Germans many years after his death: in 2010, “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” was number 1 on the charts for weeks, achieving double platinum. It became the most successful single of 2010. Kamakawiwo’ole had only used it: The original “Over The Rainbow” had already been created for the film “The Wizard of Oz” at the end of the 1930s.