Aviram Spies - "Something in the multicultural spirit of Israel, being a huge melting pot of people from different places, exposes you constantly to new sounds & experiences." - Stereo Stickman

Aviram Spies “Something in the multicultural spirit of Israel, being a huge melting pot of people from different places, exposes you constantly to new sounds & experiences.”


Israel composer and pianist Aviram Spies creates original scores and soundscapes for Film, TV and Video Games across a multitude of platforms.

The lifelong musician notes an extensive working repertoire in composition, production and performance, and we were blessed with the chance to explore the details of that journey through an in-depth interview. Here’s how it went.

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Hi Aviram, thank you so much for the interview! For those new to your work, how would you describe the music you make?

Thank you so much for having me!

I’d describe my music as jazz, but in the widest definition of the word. I’m allowing myself to constantly explore different genres, including ambient music, funk, electronic classical/orchestral and pretty much everything in between. This includes music for film, TV and video games.

What provided the catalyst or inspiration for you to want to compose original music?

A lot of my creative process comes from improvisation: from sitting at the piano and jamming with myself until something I like comes out. Sometimes there would be a specific thematic idea I’d try to follow and develop, but most of the time it comes from pure self-exploration.

Inspiration can come from everywhere, listening and looking for new types of music I’ve never heard before, going into the rabbit hole of Bandcamp unknown albums, going to concerts, and with every time I play new music by other people I get inspired, and bring all of these inspirations back to the drawing board and into my music in one way or another.

In what ways did growing up in Israel influence your musical direction and your ability to immerse yourself in the artform?

I believe that growing up in Israel had a huge influence and impact on my composition and overall musicianship.

Something in the multicultural spirit of Israel, being a huge melting pot of people from different places, exposes you constantly to new sounds and experiences.

A little bit of Russian, and eastern European influences goes hand in hand with middle eastern influences.

Aside from that, I was lucky enough to grow up in a relatively non-competitive area, where as kids, we’d just play music for fun, for exploration sakes, jamming together, without a clear vision of a goal in mind, just pure freedom.

Tell me about the project It’s Alive – why this title, and what connects the compositions within?

It’s Alive is an album by band ShanYah, that I formed with my amazing friend and brilliant composer, Harel Keshet. It’s titled like that mostly because it’s a collection of live recordings we gathered through our touring time around Israel, and mostly in one venue. But it’s also named as such, because I believe the best way to experience our music is in a live setting. Something in the air just comes to life, and we’re all, the band and the audience become synched with big wave of energy. There’s something exciting about it, so we wanted to bring that to the forefront.

The project is sensational, the chaos and passion of Peru starting things up beautifully – how different is the process of playing music with the band as opposed to solo, and what is it about jazz that draws such emotion and energy from you?  

Thank you so much for the kind words!

Peru is very dear to my heart and it took us quite a while to get it right. It started as a rhythm exercise while I was in my undergrad, working on this unique ‘clave’ of 10/8 time, which consists of 2 different patterns of 5 beats each, but has different groupings of beats that goes like so – 3-2-2-3.

This gives a very flowing feel to the music that I think is quite rare, so I had to write melody on top of that and found myself in this jazzy-Israeli realm. Inspired by Avishai Cohen, Daniel Zamir, Chick Corea and so much more of course.

When playing with the band, everything changes immediately. As the composer, I’d try to steer the wheel to places I see fit, but it’s a joint effort, that everyone is chipping in, jamming together, feeding of each other’s ideas, and surprising ourselves in the process of doing so.

“I think that jazz gives us the freedom as musicians to explore every corner that each composition has to offer us, and with that mindset we’d try to explore and reach new places, while keeping a solid idea and a vision in mind.”

You also make music for film and video games – are you a fan of these mediums first, and does your mind create in a different way when working alongside a visual aid or direction?

I love film and video games, mostly interesting dramas, or good single player games with a great story, Ghost of Tsushima is a good example of an amazing story, put together beautifully with incredible music.

I don’t think I create differently when working on these other mediums, but it definitely taps into a different side of the composition brain. Thinking of the larger picture or the art piece you’re tagging along to. In the end, you’re joining something bigger, so I have to take into consideration more factors, that pave the drama together. These things most of the time do lead me to writing different kind of music, in a way that would hopefully support the medium in the best way.

What’s your biggest ambition at present?

Currently I’d love to continue my journey in the Film and Video games space. Being able to work on interesting feature films, or a big AAA game would be a dream come true, but in the end of the day, what drives me the most is just to keep working with amazing and interesting creative people.

Being surrounded with such people is constantly inspiring, and I love being in that space of a positive feedback loop. Being inspired, and hopefully inspiring others

What’s the most valuable lesson you’ve learned so far from building a career as a musician?

The most valuable lesson I’ve learned throughout the years would be to just always keep going and being curious about every little thing.
Every field, big or small, contain incredible and fascinating intricacies, and it give me fuel and inspiration to move forward, search my artistic path, and how it connects to other people in the world.

Having that mindset can only bring good things to your career, that’s what I think now at least.

Where can fans catch you performing in 2024?

In the next few months, I plan to release several new projects that have been waiting patiently in my “drawer” of ideas, that I can’t wait to release – some more jazzy, some orchestral, and some even electronic and ambient, which I’ve been exploring lately.

So keep an eye open for these releases, and thank you so much for having me on here!

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Find Aviram Spies on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok & the Website.

Rebecca Cullen

Founder & Editor

Founder, Editor, Musician & MA Songwriter

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