It’s Asian Pacific Heritage Month and Google Doodle is honoring Hawaii native Israel Kamakawiwo’ole today (May 20), on what would have been his 61st birthday. The ukulele player died at age 38 in 1997.
The animation shows the singer-songwriter playing the ukulele and singing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” by the water, then transitions to an earlier time of Kamakawiwo’ole receiving his first ukulele as a kid. The detailed Doodle represents the impact the artist created as his record is played among a group of people dancing and smiling together. The animated artwork on the vinyl record shows Kamakawiwo’ole grinning and rainbow shining through in the background; his nickname IZ is stamped on the top right corner.
“Through his joyful songs and lifelong advocacy for the islands’ values and culture, Israel has been widely referred to as the “Voice of Hawai’i.””
Watch the vibrant animation below.