Have you ever heard of mental health rock music? Let me introduce you to Citizen Soldier.
Citizen Soldier’s music will resonate with anyone who is or has struggled with their mental health, whether it’s because of abuse, trauma, depression, anxiety, PTSD, or any number of other battles. The lead singer and founding member Jake Segura has a wonderful voice that sucked me the moment I first heard it. I’m not usually into the rock genre, but Citizen Soldier’s music has changed that forever.
My favorite songs right now are “Thank You for Hating Me,” “I’m Not Okay,” and “Would Anyone Care,” which talks about struggling with suicidal thoughts. Those are the songs I have on repeat when I’m having a bad moment and need to let out my emotions. “I’m Not Okay” and “Would Anyone Care” are great songs to send to someone to let them know how you are feeling and ask for help. “I Hope It Haunts You” is a song I blast when I remember a traumatic part of my past and I envision singing it to the person responsible. It’s kind of cathartic.
I was given the opportunity to speak to the band about their music and fan base. Here is what they had to say.
GeekMom: What brought the band together?
Jake Segura: I recruited all of the band members via online communities (Craigslist, KSL, etc.). It took over a year of me writing and working with musicians all over the state to find the right fit for this project. It was a very discouraging process and one that I gave up on multiple times.
GM: Where does your music come from?
JS: I feel that my music comes from three sources. My personal experiences, my work experiences with clients, and the stories shared by fans of our music.
GM: What made you want to focus on mental health themes?
JS: I went through some mental health struggles that almost ended my life. I wanted to create a community and lifeline for anybody struggling in a similar situation.
GM: I first discovered you on Tik Tok with “Thank You for Hating Me” through user @mothernightshade using the sound for a video. I immediately downloaded it on iTunes. With Tik Tok becoming more popular, how much of your fanbase do you think you get from that platform over others?
JS: TikTok has been huge for us. As independent artists, our ability to grow and develop our fanbase is extremely limited. TikTok is one workaround that we have been able to utilize to continue growing.
GM: What do you personally think of the mental health system and what could improve?
JS: I feel that normalizing mental health services as well as making them more affordable for lower-income individuals and families is vital for a healthy and safe society.
GM: What is it about music that makes mental health themes more approachable?
JS: Music gives us an opportunity to say things in ways that a normal conversation just can’t communicate with the same emotion.
GM: Is there one song you think everyone should listen to, and which one should it be? Which song of yours do you feel is a hidden gem that deserves more attention than it has gotten?
JS: I feel that “Let It Burn,” as well as “Would Anyone Care,” are probably the two that best capture the meaning and message of the band. However, I feel like “Always December” is our most underrated song. We thought that would be our biggest release ever and it was a huge disappointment.
GM: What song resonates with you the most?
JS: “Always December” as it relates to my experience with depression.
A special thank you to Citizen Soldier for taking the time out to answer our questions. We can’t wait to see what you do next.
For more information on Citizen Soldier, head to their website or their social media pages (I LOVE their Tik Tok account) and make sure to pick up their latest album out on November 17th. You can stream them on Spotify and Apple Music.