May 20, 1959 – June 26, 1997
Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, a Hawaiian musician, gained popularity while a member of the band, Makaha Sons of Ni’ihau during 1976-1980’s. The band released 15 successful albums.
In 1990, IZ as his fans knew him by, released the album, Facing Future. His renditions of Somewhere Over The Rainbow and What A Wonderful World helped the album go platinum and become the best selling album of all time by a Hawaiian artist.
Israel Kamakawiwo’ole died much too soon at the age of 38. Severe obesity led to respiratory insufficiency.
More about this extraordinary man can be found in the book, IZ: Voice of the People (Israel Kamakawiwo’ole) by Rick Carrol.
*This blog post contains affiliate links.