CMB 017 : Zach Bolen of Citizens

citizens.zach.bolenIn this Friday’s feature segment of the podcast, I spoke with singer, songwriter, and worship leader, Zach Bolen of the band Citizens.
Their first full length self-titled album, was released in March of this year, with a fresh sound – born right in the U-District of Seattle.

Zach has a heart for his local church, and the mission they’re on together. It’s really refreshing to see a band who cares about the people they live around, seeking to serve them, showing them Jesus in a face-to-face way. The band is simply a crew of guys who are musically talented, accessible to their fans, and eager to talk to anyone they can about the gospel.

Listen to or download the podcast here, and check out the detailed show notes below….


Here are a few of the things we discussed:

  • Zach’s story of faith surrounding the events of his dad’s death
  • His musical story in the church
  • The story of how the album was birthed
  • His songwriting process
  • The song “I Am Living in a Land of Death” and Psalm 19
  • Their heart to serve the people of Mars Hill Church in the U-District of Seattle
  • Gospel identity
  • Travel vs. local ministry
  • The false tensions that Christian musicians tend to create

Links for Citizens:

Take Action and Win Some Music!

As I said in the podcast, we don’t want CMB just to be all about ideation without any action.

Here’s the deal:

People say you’re way more likely to accomplish your goals if you write them down. So to that end, answer the following two questions, and you’ll be entered into a drawing to win a copy of the Citizens album.

1) What project for your music (with a deadline) are you planning this year?

Just to be clear: There are tons of different projects you could plan. Don’t limit yourself to thinking you have to release a full length album, or a five song EP. Perhaps there’s an event at your church, or an upcoming birthday in your family that you could write a song for.

The big idea here is to do decide. Decide on a project of some kind, and set a deadline for it. And pray as you go! Don’t forget how Zach talked about the grace that God brought during that season, as they leaned on the Holy Spirit along the way. Pretty awesome.

2) In what specific ways does your heart beat for your own local church?

This could be musical or not. Share with us your thoughts on your local church, and how your heart beats for the people that God has placed right around you. Answering this question might help you think of a project for the first question if you’re feeling stumped.

Let us know in the Comments!

I’l announce the winners in next week’s podcast on July 5th.