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Israel 'IZ' Kamakawiwo'ole

The most popular entertainer in Hawaii until his tragic death in 1997, Israel Kamakawiwo'ole formed the traditional Makaha Sons as a teenager in the mid-'70s, went out on his own in more of a contemporary style by the 1990s, and released four immensely popular recordings before passing away just after the release of 1996's N Dis Life. Born in the Honolulu suburb of Kaimuki, Kamakawiwo'ole later moved to nearby Makaha. In allegiance to his new home, Israel formed the Makaha Sons of Ni'ihau with brother Skippy plus Louis "Moon" Kauakahi, Sam Gray and Jerome Koko. The Makaha Sons recorded No Kristo in 1976 and released five more albums during as many years, though Skippy's death of a heart attack in 1982 came as quite a blow to his younger brother. The group soldiered on, and became Hawaii's most popular traditional group with breakout albums like 1984's Puana Hou Me Ke Aloha and its follow-up, 1986's Ho'ola.

Israel Kamakawiwo'ole decided to begin recording on his own with 1990's Ka 'Ano'i, which became the most popular Hawaiian album of the year. Though he continued his solo career, by 1991 he had recorded with the Makaha Sons of Ni'ihau again, and that year's Makaha Bash 3 set still more records in Hawaii, thanks in part to the single "Broken Promise." Another Makaha LP, Ho'oluana, appeared in 1992, though it was the last with Israel. His second solo effort, Facing Future, appeared in 1993, and 1995's E Ala E featured a reunited duet with Skippy, thanks to studio technology. Israel continued to win awards and sell very well with 1996's N Dis Life, but his ballooning weight problem (at times, he weighed over 750 pounds) caused his early death at the age of 38. ~ John Bush, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

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So tragic that he died young, but I'm grateful that he left a musical legacy for us and future generations to remember him by. He did great in such short time.
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I remember hearing this for the first time on television. It came on my favorite show ER.
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IZ song comes on - I'll NEVER change the channel, turn it off, down, EvEr.
His music is like a vacation - no matter where you are or what you're doing. Definitely someone who found and made use of his God given talent
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sofiadolphin 2 0 1 4
I love IZs music. He has the voice of an angel. Im sure he now lives in a musical, and peaceful world now.
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������������
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Love somewhere over the rainbow played that song for my husband funeral
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lissymissy18
I singed this song in Kindergarten and I still love it!��
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dagio63
He has the voice of an angel. I love his songs. They always make me forget about my worries. ��
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An enormous talent.... No pun intended~~~
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Sooner than we think, we'll all be up there with him, singing along to his tunes.
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Love you, IZ, always....Lo o k foward to singing with you when I come Home, too...P.
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blueroseskat h y j o
Voice of an angel. There is surely a heaven for this beautiful man.
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If only I could wake up to Iz everyday
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i love this song reminds me of chilhood memories singing this song for Kindergarden graduation :)
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alexiap141
I love Over The Rainbow. My favorite! It's relaxing, can imagine myself listening on a beach, somewhere in Hawaii, Mexico, wherever.
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tinusleonie
This is for u read till the end it's adorable I sent an angel to watch over u last night but when is came back it was asked why it said Angels don't watch over other Angels
There r twenty Angels in ur world twenty r sleeping nine are playing and one is reading this message God has seen u struggling with some things and God says its over a blessing is coming ur way if u believe in God send this to 14 friends
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God's rainbow is true and I hope Iz gets to see it everyday as he sings with the Angels .
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I had always want this song in the morning in second grade and now. I'm thirteen going to eighth grade and this song brings back alot of wonderful memories
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Clam
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nmurphy941
Brother Iz makes you feel like your in Hawaii. God gave us a gift in his voice and spirit of Aloha.
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love this song
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T, do you listen to Somewhere Over the Rainbow anymore? t2
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Beautiful just beautiful.
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I love you uuuuuu uuuuuuuu uuuuuuuuu uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuu
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���������� Over the Rainbow ����������
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Over The Rainbow: You're looking for a leprechaun?
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beautyofnatu r e . l g
Smoothest sweetest voice ever...from his little uke and large lungs! Check out his lesser known native Hawaiian stuff. Listened a lot when I lived in Hawaii...Alm o s t heaven, West Makaha!
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His soul ......wow if u don't believe! Thank u GOD I give u all my devotion
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He made this song his own. At least in my eyes, it is very hard to do a cover of another song and impress me. He succeeded!
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v.alarcon042 1
This song reminds me of my grandparents
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❤️Somewhere over the Rainbow❤️
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German German music makes me high
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frances_ira
Such a good song! So sad though��
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Omg so sad...he died at 23 so young!!!
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Such a beautiful voice....... . . . . d i s c o v e r e d him while on a trip to Hawaii. So sad he is gone!
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You are the best thing in the world
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My love for Iz music touches my soul I'm so happy to back on the big Island my spirit is flying with the the Angels that abound in this place
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Such a wonderful song
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.
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I love you uuuuuu uuuuuuuu uuuuuuuuu uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuuuu u uuuuuuuuu uuu
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So sad :.( rip IZ������
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Rip IZ
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yasmeen352
Love this song it's sad but nice ❤️
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A gift to all mankind
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The Big Kahuna
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This makes me cry so much
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I'm Hawaiian so I listen to a lot of Hawaiian music
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This person has a great voice and my girlfriend cry on a song of his
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I'm only 10 years old and I really wish I could get to meet him
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A gift to all ,not man made, God given
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