These days you see more and more remakes in mainstream cinema and less risk-taking projects. I have nothing against remakes, but most of them seem like overproduced, politically correct, versions of the original masterpieces. See what they have done to Dumbo! I would like to see more effort in making new and original stories.6
As a part of our series about rising music stars, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Izakman.
Israeli musician and award-winning animator Izakman (aka Itamar Isaak) has attracted the attention of the music industry with his charismatic stage presence and enigmatic style. His 60’s style single ‘Real Boy’, following on from the trippy single ‘Cyber Love’ , is the rock n roll version of Pinocchio, a story about growth and transformation towards self-fulfilment.
As Izakman sees it, the world is going through not only a health crisis but also through a financial-political, social and moral crises, which leads to a total loss of belief in the system and the media. Izakman wishes to inspire and stimulate more optimism with his music. Real Boy was born of a genuine belief in oneself and is about coming out of darkness into light. He is also part of a growing young underground music community called “Floating Anarchy.” The group has been active for two years, secretly running events all over the country that’s spread only by word of mouth.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?
When I was a kid, I spent my elementary school breaks singing about everything that was happening in the school yard. The teachers were concerned that I was by myself, not engaging with other kids but they were also fascinated. It was something they’d never seen before. But in class I didn’t excel at all. I was more into doodling and drawing my fantasy worlds and less connected to what was being taught.
So, it was my parent’s idea to look for something that would engage me. I started to learn music and to play the piano. I got into it immediately and that’s when I started my musical journey.
Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?
Ever I since I can remember, music was playing in my head. When I was ten, I studied piano from Miri Singer — a chamber musician. She enjoyed letting me improvise in her lessons, saying I didn’t need to study composition since it came out of me naturally. My passion for music grew as I majored in arts in high school and later on in animation school in Bezalel Academy for arts and design. Throughout my studying I obsessively kept writing more and more songs and immediately after graduation created Izakman.
Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?
For me, meeting Avi Benjamin is a memorable moment. He’s one of Israel’s leading musicians and when he heard the demo for ‘Wind Up Doll’, he was fascinated and decided to produce it for me. I was exhilarated, I felt confident that maybe I can do something with this passion of mine and become a professional musician.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
In addition to playing with my full band as Izakman, we also held concerts with lead guitarist Liad Broyd. We toured the country, playing in different bars and hostels.
We didn’t really bother promoting our shows; we were relying on the local audience.
One evening, there was no one but a few cleaning workers eating Shawarma in our faces, really close to the stage. Whenever we finished a song, there was silence, and these guys were looking at us as if we were aliens. It was awkward and hilarious at the same time. By the time we got to our last song, Liad had asked me “So we’ll do this one and pack our things?” I answered vigorously: “Yes, we’ll play this one and get outta here”. We couldn’t help ourselves from bursting into laughter during the entire last song.
I think the one valuable lesson I learned from that I can handle difficult situations with a laugh.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?
I’m making a piano version and a video of my single “Cyber Love”. We are in the final mixing stage of my debut album to be released in the beginning of 2021. I’m also in preproduction of a new music video for “Down the Rabbit Hole” to be completed by the end of December
We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?
I believe that conservatism is unhealthy for culture as it blocks changes which are important. It’s like blocking the body’s chakras or stopping the river from flowing. Diversity and pluralism keep society evolving.
These days you see more and more remakes in mainstream cinema and less risk-taking projects. I have nothing against remakes, but most of them seem like overproduced, politically correct, versions of the original masterpieces. See what they have done to Dumbo! I would like to see more effort in making new and original stories.
I believe that diversity is essential for innovation and without innovation we are dead.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.
Since I’m at the very beginning of my career I would like to be given 5 tips on how to succeed as an artist! My whole life I wake up with music in my head and go to sleep with it. I feel that music chose me so it’s up to me to sort it out and find the way to build a musician’s career.
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
Consistency is crucial. You are in it for the long run.
You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
I have a song that’s called “Eye Level People”. It sounds epic and has a significant subject matter. It’s about jealousy and our nature to envy what we don’t have; thinking if we just had it would make us great. I managed with “Eye Level People” to write lyrics about a bigger social issue that touches us all and I’m proud of that achievement.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
One valuable lesson is that sometimes what you hear in your head is not always the best choice. Roy Nizzani — my album’s producer was able to bring to my fixed ideas new ones that surprised me and made my music so much better. What is more surprising that we both have very different tastes in music.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
“The love you take is equal to the love you make.”
My graduation film “A Night Without” was poorly received. The film was made with love and passion and it was extremely discouraging that it went by unappreciated by my teachers and classmates. I felt that it wasn’t a matter of quality but a matter of finding the right people and set up to watch it. I sent the film to international festivals and gladly it was excepted to many and the pivotal was the winning the first prize at Beliff film festival in London where I received back all the love and passion from audience.
Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂
Arthur Brown. He’s one of last surviving psychedelic artists from the late 60’s and amazingly he’s still performing and making great music. I got to see him live in A New Day Festival in Faversham. I almost approached him but I shied away- but I promise to approach him if there’s ever a next time!
How can our readers follow you online?
Follow Izakman on facebook, spotify and youtube
This was very meaningful, thank you so much! We wish you continued success!
Thank you for the interview!