I am not a huge Wizard of Oz fan, by any means. I find the song “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” sung by Judy Garland and others as dreamy, somewhat wistful, and somewhat sappy all at once. I find the medley of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow / What a Wonderful World” sung by Hawaiian singer Israel Kamakawiwo’ole heartbreakingly beautiful. It weighs my heart with sad joy and makes it soar all at once. It has been used with several movies and commercials, and I can completely understand why, as it would lend its qualities to whatever it is coupled with. I first heard it during the credits of the film Finding Forrester, which I enjoyed quite a bit on its own, and stood in the half-lit theater while the credits rolled, soaking it in.
You can hear it on Youtube here over a montage of images of Iz’s life and the spreading of his ashes at sea. Sadly, unchecked obesity led to a short life of 38, though from afar they seem like a happy 38. If you want to hear a cleaner copy of the song, click here. Rhapsody will give you something like 25 free listens when you sign up. While your there, check out Iz’s Hawaiian version of John Denver’s “Country Roads.” Nice.
I have done a Melancholdy/Beautiful post before about songs that make me ache. Do you know the feeling? Do you have a song?
And how nice is the ukulele.