Na Hoku Hanohano Award winner Izik invited Talk Story host McKenna Maduli for a little workout session, followed by ono grindz at his favorite late-night, post-show pit stop, Zippy's.
The musician comes from a family of teachers and mentors who were strict disciplinarians. "For me that's kind of in my blood because my grandma, my grandpa, my sister (were teachers)," he said. "We're so inspired by so many different things, it's not just one type of music. That's my goal as an artist is to just really get into all of that stuff and express myself fully and completely because a lot of times growing up I wasn't allowed to do that. My upbringing was a little more strict."
Last year, Izik won a Na Hoku Hanohano award for writing the 2018 Song of the Year for "Bamboo" with Kimie Miner. "Winning the Hoku with Kim was a great moment for me. I got to write and be recognized for my writing and that was the first award that I got as a musician and a songwriter. For me, my biggest accomplishment is finding my own voice because for so long I was trying to be someone else or do something I thought other people would want. And now, I know exactly who I am and I know exactly what I want to do."
Izik has been toiling over a new album. "I've been working pretty much for the past two years on this album with Zale Music (and) Imua Garza," said Izik. "He just gets me. I don't have to worry about knowing the technical terms when I get into the studio. I use a lot of flowery language. Imua's just like OK! Cool, I got you. I'm just excited because it's a big growth from the last album that we did. I got to explore a lot more sounds and a lot more eclectic stuff. Imua really gives me space to be whoever and whatever I want to be."
Izik says it's important for him to produce original songs. "I think for the first two albums I really wanted to focus on my own work because I spend so much of my life singing other people's songs at hotels and restaurants. When you do those gigs for three hours nobody wants to hear your originals, they want to hear covers. So for my album I just want to do me."
Izik, who credits his musical influences to artists like Mariah Carey, The Carpenters, Amy Winehouse, Loyal Garner, Beyoncé and Frank Ocean, has developed a unique sound.
He began performing in local venues across Hawai'i in early 2013. Since then, Izik has become an award-winning performer with multiple local, national and international tours under his belt, including a Na Hoku Hanohano Award for writing the 2018 Song of the Year for "Bamboo" with Kimie Miner. The Utah-born, Hawai'i-raised singer/songwriter released his debut album Obsidian (Zeo Music, May 10, 2016) to critical acclaim and is currently working on his sophomore album, to be released in late 2019. @izikfamous
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