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Somewhere over the Rainbow

Updated on September 23, 2014

Over the Rainbow

In 1956, our family snuggled together to watch the debut of the Wizard of Oz on TV. It is estimated that 45 million others turned their channel to CBS to see the movie for the first time. The movie was released in theaters 1939 but had never been shown on TV. Those who watched in 1956 only saw it in black and white and many did not see it in color until they were adults.

The song "Over the Rainbow" was almost cut from the movie, The studio was concerned that it slowed the momentum too early in the movie. Thank goodness they didn't. An entire generation who watched the movie that night, fell in love with the song. It became the anthem for all young adults who wished that they could be somewhere else, a place where they were appreciated. The song is no less powerful today for any one who is longing for a happy, trouble-free world. If it has bluebirds and rainbows, so much the better.

Judy Garland - Song from the movie

Why, Oh why can't I?

Lyrics from "Over the Rainbow"

Somewhere over the rainbow, way up high

There's a land that I heard of, once in a lullaby

Somewhere over the rainbow, skies are blue

And the dreams that you dare to dream, really do come true

Someday I'll wish upon a star

And wake up where the clouds are far behind me

Where troubles melt like lemon drops away above the chimney tops

That's where you'll find me

Somewhere over the rainbow, bluebirds fly

Birds fly over the rainbow, why then, oh why can't I?

Somewhere over the rainbow, bluebirds fly

Birds fly over the rainbow, why then, oh why can't I?

If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow

Why, oh why can't I?

The book and the movie

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: 100th Anniversary Edition (Books of Wonder)
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: 100th Anniversary Edition (Books of Wonder)

L Frank Baun wrote this book in 1900. For several years librarians banned this book as being unqualified as important juvenile literature.


I wonder how many people have wanted to fly over the rainbow?

Somewhere over the Rainbow - Israel "IZ" Kamakawiwo'ole

This is a great version of the song and at the end are scenes of scattering his ashes in the sea. Although he only lived to 38, he gained much recognition for his talent as a performer. This version is well worth a listen.

Celtic Women - Over the Rainbow

Do you want to fly over the rainbow?

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    • hntrssthmpsn profile image


      6 years ago

      When I was little, The Wizard of Oz was the ONLY television event for which we were always allowed to stay up late :) Plenty of oh-so-wonderful memories wrapped up in a great movie! I love it that you mention the Brother Iz cover of this song, as well... one of my all-time favorite covers by an artist we lost too soon.

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 

      7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      I love Somewhere Over The Rainbow and sure enjoyed this visit.

    • ChrissLJ profile image


      7 years ago

      I love Israel's version.

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 

      7 years ago from Central Florida

      My sister chose Israel "IZ" Kamakawiwo'ole 's recording of Somewhere Over the Rainbow to have at her husband's funeral. Very touching.

    • singlemaltdram profile image


      7 years ago

      Nice Lens, it was an amazing film. Great Videos.

    • choosehappy profile image


      8 years ago from US

      Ah, this brings back such nice memories.


    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image


      8 years ago

      When I was a child, The Wizard of Oz was aired on TV once a year (spring). I didn't see it in color until I was an adult. When my kids were little we bought a VHS tape of it. They loved it as much as I did.


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