The first time Israel heard our version of Hawaii 78 – The Official Site of Israel IZ Kamakawiwo`ole

The first time Israel heard our version of Hawaii 78

Palehua Studio

Photo: Mountain Apple Company Studio – Palehua

We recorded in two different places. Honolulu and at Palehua which are both in Hawai’i but a bit different. That’s a different story. He had been up at Palehua for some many days and I had been working on for many weeks what I thought was a break-through.

Late one of the recording nights, he was tired and worked all days on many tracks and wanted to sleep, but I insisted that he stayed in the room and listen to one more song that he had never heard…… for me it was the key to his new life.

In Palehua you have a fireplace or you’ll perish, if your boney like me, “it gets cold” just under 3000 ft elevation …….IZ was perfect. Israel took his shirt off and sat there with a perfect core temperature next to the fire place looking East at the city lights. That was Palehua ……… I’ll never forget it.

That was the first time Israel heard the “Hawai’i 78” intro with narrative and orchestration in place ……

It was about a little after midnight ……….
Once I started playback, I turned away from Israel so he could experience it himself.
At the end of the song…… I started to become aware of Israel and turned, he was shaking, trembling. I didn’t know what to think at first. Is he having a stroke, heart attack?…………….  Turns out he was just crying uncontrollably.

We played the track over and over again until the sun came up, I cried too………
It was so him………….. He was more beautiful than you could ever imagine.

Here is what he heard, August 14th 1993 1:20am ….. till sunrise

The next morning  we took the majority of the Facing Future cover photographs in the front yard of Palehua, a sunny day.