Posted by: Glenelg Guitar Studio | April 24, 2014

Over the Rainbow by Judy Garland, Pink, Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck and Leigh!

Did you see Pink’s rendition of “Over the Rainbow”at the Oscars recently ?.It was the 75th anniversary of “the Wizard of Oz” and it was actually released 75 years ago.
Some songs just won’t go away and this is one of them. I remember it as an “oldies” song in my youth and it popped up again as I delved into my Guitar studies and has been there ever since as many students have learned it.

The original was sung by Judy Garland in the 1939 movie “Over the Rainbow”. She was a child star who made over 25 movies including 9 with Mickey Rooney, who recently died at the ripe old age of 93. She tragically died in 1969 of a barbiturate overdose.(that Hollywood curse hasn’t changed much over the years.)

Here’s my version in a jazz style which has been a staple for many intermediate guitar students over the years. “Modern guitar” students might like to learn the  Jimmy Hendrix version or maybe Jeff Becks version or check out something a little different in the second video.

P.S. If you want the meaning of the song its at the bottom of the page



“Over the Rainbow” (often referred to as “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”) is a classic Academy Award-winning ballad, with music by Harold Arlen and lyrics by E.Y. Harburg. Written for the 1939 movie The Wizard of Oz, and was sung by actress Judy Garland in her starring role as Dorothy Gale.

About five minutes into the film, Dorothy sings the song after failing to get her aunt and uncle to listen to her relate an unpleasant incident involving her dog, Toto, and the town spinster, Miss Gulch. Dorothy’s Aunt Em tells her to “find yourself a place where you won’t get into any trouble.” This prompts Dorothy to walk off by herself, musing to Toto, “‘Some place where there isn’t any trouble.’ Do you suppose there is such a place, Toto? There must be. It’s not a place you can get to by a boat, or a train. It’s far, far away. Behind the moon, beyond the rain…” at which point she begins singing.





  1. Chet Atkins did a great version.

    • Thanks Richard.
      I’ll be sure to look up the Chet Atkins version as I am a big fan of his.

  2. Thanks for posting this Leigh… Well played by you… Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s
    Rendition was fantastic, but I think the best ever done was by the great Billy Thorpe.

    • Thanks for responding Dave. I will check out the Billy Thorpe version.

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