Somewhere Over The Rainbow Analysis

399 Words2 Pages
“Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” has been performed by many inspirational instrumentalists, and singers, who have added their own personal touch to the classic. Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s version of “Somewhere over the Rainbow,” can be compared and contrasted with Art Tatum and Judy Garland’s version in many ways. This short essay will include how each artist used elements of music differently, including texture, timbre, melody, harmony, and rhythm. First, the timbre of Garland’s voice is soft and sweet with a lot of vibrato. In addition the string and wind instruments have soft tones that couple with her voice to give the version a dreamy feel. In comparison, Kamakawiwo’oles timbre is pure, soft and breathy, that also gives a dreamy feel in the beginning of the piece. As the song continues however the Ukulele begins to dominate with a lusher and fuller timbre. In contrast, the timbre of the piano in Tatum’s version differs greatly from the soft timbre of Kamakawiwo’oles voice, because it is dense and has strong articulations.…show more content…
Each piece has a consonant harmony that is pleasing to the ear, and a homophonic texture. The pieces all carry some of the basic melody as well, with changes in format and differences in rhythm. Garland’s melody begins with a cheerful jump in octave on the first lyric of the song, just as Kamakawiwo’oles does for the first two notes. Unlike Garland’s version were each stanza returns to the base or tonic note of the octave, Kamakawiwo’ole ends the stanza climbing to the highest note of the octave introduced in the beginning. In Tatum’s version the main melody is often lost under the many harmonies and embellishments he provides, in contrast to Kamakawiwo’oles were the melody is always present. Like Tatum, Kamakawiwo’ole adds his own embellishments to the end of the song to close in a unique
Open Document