Roy Niv is an Israeli singer-songwriter, who is a real pop rock sensation. Niv began his journey in the music industry in 2020, just before the pandemic began. However, his interest in music started way back when he was a young boy, receiving a Telecaster (once owned by Bryan Adams) from this late father. When he’s not in the studio making music, Niv is acting; having been in shows such as Israel’s very own ‘Spell Keepers‘.
Roy Niv was originally supposed to be recording his debut album two years ago pre-pandemic. Since lockdown changed his plans, he stuck to creating a cover of Machine Gun Kelly’s ‘Bloody Valentine’, gaining over 20,000 views on YouTube in a matter of months!
He also released this debut single ‘Stay Up’ back in October last year with an accompanying music video telling a love story set in World War II.
It definitely seems as though Roy Niv’s career is just evolving, so with that we caught up with the man himself to talk about one of his favourite bands, Nirvana and how they have changed his perception of music.
Where did your stage name originate from?
As a solo artist, the name is my name, Roy Niv.
How would you describe your sound in 3 words?
Powerful, unapologetic, sweeping.
Which bands inspire you the most when writing music and why?
The first song I ever danced to (when I was 3 years old) was Lenny Kravitz’s ‘Fly Away’! From there on, there was no escape from falling in love with The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Radiohead, Muse and more. Some new music like The Lumineers, Coldplay, James Bay, Greta Van Fleet, Sam Fender and Machine Gun Kelly hit me later on in life and gave me the inspiration to make music on my own.
Never mind, Nirvana’s second and most famous album changed my life completely. I know some people would say I’m way too young to say this, but the truth is I was introduced to this album by my Dad when I was 11 and it led to a huge change in my perception of music. Until then, I only knew some Beatles songs and other music that sounded very nice and pretty. But when I first heard Kurt Cobain shouting and screaming, I felt something like never before. I finally realised what passion can be injected into music in such a simple way. I used to cover a lot of Nirvana songs from that album and it eventually inspired most of my current music.
I can also find inspiration in unusual places. Van Gogh for example, can break my heart with every painting. Although he is not a musician, his paintings pierce through my soul the exact same way as a beautiful melody.
What is your songwriting process?
To be honest, I don’t have a specific process for writing or recording songs and for all I know, every song or project requires a different process or handling. For example, one of my relatively mellow ballads was written from a place of pain after a breakup. That song almost wrote itself and I didn’t have to do much to make it happen. In another case, I just heard a vocal line in my head during dinner and immediately rushed to my guitar to play it and develop it into a song 🙂 I believe there is no one creative process and I try to just listen carefully to my musical sense and trust that it knows what the song needs.
Out of all the tracks you have released, which one is the most personal to you?
The track that is the most personal to me is also my latest single – ‘Stay Up‘. An acoustic-rock song that starts as a ballad and evolves into a powerful burst of energy and melody. We also shot a wild music video, which tells a love story taking place during World War II. It was one of the most challenging and fun projects I ever executed and you can find it here! Let me know what you think 😉
Which song is your favourite to perform live?
My favourite song to perform is definitely ‘Stay Up‘. This is such a powerful song to me and I love feeling the crowd’s energy when I play it as it’s starting slow and eventually reaching the peak and the whole crowd goes wild. Surprisingly, it is also the one that gets requested the most.
How do you feel that social media has impacted your career as a musician?
The people that know me the best know I wasn’t born to do social media. It doesn’t come naturally to me and I’m still struggling with the challenges it brings. I realised it’s a part of the journey and learned how to deal with it the best way and still learning. Not everything comes easily on the road and that’s okay. But I’m always getting better at this and reaching more fans along the way.
Who would be your dream artist to work with in the future?
No doubt, I would love to collaborate with many artists but those who most attract me are artists like Royal Blood, Yungblud, Highly Suspect, Maneskin, KALEO and many more. I believe collaboration in the music world is necessary for growing and evolving and I always look for new people to collaborate with!
Who would you love to support on tour and why?
I’d love to support KALEO on tour, because I think they’re bringing rock back the absolute best way possible and I just want to be a part of this revolution and support those who’re not afraid to carry the torch and move forward with rock n’ roll!
What’s next for you musically?
Definitely new music! I’m going to release my next few singles through the next year and I invite you to follow my IG @roy_niv to stay tuned and be the first to listen to them when they are coming out.