TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF!
My name is Zach Pollard, and with the occasional help of a few friends, I release music under the moniker Zesty Z and the GoteeZ. I grew up in rural Georgia, where the major hobbies were hunting, fishing, and sports! My first exposure to music was predominately through my family and also attendance in a Southern Baptist church where we would mainly sing hymns. Thankfully, I began learning classical piano in late elementary school and continued till I went off to college. After I went to the University of Georgia, I began learning to improvise on the piano through jazz improv classes, and also taught myself to play guitar. I had also begun writing songs and either jamming with or backing up my friends on piano. My first solo show was in Branson, Missouri of all places at a Starbucks where I played a lot of originals along with a few covers by musicians like Tom Petty, Sting, and Outkast. Around this time is when I acquired the moniker Zesty Z and the GoteeZ, because I was hugely in to Steely Dan, and so my friend told me I should call myself Zesty Zach, from there it evolved. I moved to Houston in 2010 to work with Mission Year, a non-profit organization serving in low-income communities. Throughout the next few years, I really grew in my identity as a musician and songwriter, and also discovered a call to pursue a music therapy degree.
All of the above is to describe some of where I came from and the process of discovering my own love of songwriting, singing, playing, recording, and sharing the gift of music. To tell you the truth, I deeply love the gift of music and am glad that I can share it with others! I currently still work full time with Mission Year, and go to school full time at Sam Houston State (commuting from Houston), have a wife and two young children! So to be honest, I don't really play a lot of gigs, tour, or record at a real studio. I write a lot of songs about my life, my family, and issues that are important to me. I record them in a spare bedroom, that is my studio/office space and then I share them with whoever wants to listen. While I think there is a place for creating something flawless and beautiful, I also think that true beauty shouldn't always need pitch correction, a million takes, or for everything to be perfect. In some ways, Zesty Z and the GoteeZ isn't so much a professional band as it is my own personal musical journal/journey! With that being said, I invite you to enter in, listen, and hopefully hear something that is meaningful to you!
WHAT IS THE STORY BEHIND THE SONG?
I wrote this song a day or so after the Charleston church shooting in June 2015. This song to me speaks of the deep seated racial hatred that still exists in our country along with the paradox that I often find myself in as a white male from rural Georgia (right across the Savannah from South Carolina). While I love the South, and love Georgia, and love my hometown and its people, I also have learned a lot from living elsewhere. I've learned about racism, privilege, the need for justice and equality, and the need for a love that cares for and values all people. So in a sense, while I still exist in a few different worlds, I have decided to grow in standing for love and justice in all of those places. This song is a mere reflection and outworking of my own process.
WHAT IS THE MOST INFLUENTIAL BOOK YOU HAVE EVER READ?
To be honest, it is a little difficult to name the most influential book in my life, and this is not because I read too much! Over the years, I have found myself mostly drawn to fantasy books. I came to the conclusion that I greatly enjoy fantasy books because they creatively address hugely important concepts of love, hate, journey, revenge, and forgiveness. I sometimes wonder if these books actually present a more realistic and inspiring picture of our actual lives than does non-fiction. Regardless, if you want to read amazingly creative fantasy check out anything by Brandon Sanderson, particularly "The Way of Kings". This guy is ridiculously creative!
TO LISTEN MORE AND CONTACT ZACH:
I am recording several EPs that will be released in the next few months. You can buy, stream, or download music for free here:
You can also check out the following for updates: