Entertainment » Music

Tom Goss on the Making of "Make Believe"

by Kilian Melloy
Monday Oct 29, 2012

Tom Goss has made videos like "Lover," the DADT-era clip that portrayed an American military casualty in Afghanistan whose boyfriend back home was left to deal with being treated as a second-class citizen. Goss has also sung with Matt Alber about the plight of gay troops prior to the repeal of DADT, as well as promoting marriage equality in his songs. But he also has a fun side, and fans can catch an eyeful of wild-style Goss in his new video, "Make Believe."

The track is one of a clutch of likeable pop tunes on album "Turn It Around," which came out in the spring of 2011. It took a while, but now Goss has made a video of "Make Believe," in which his own naked body (tastefully shielded by a clock) becomes a canvas for the work of painter Scott G. Brooks.

Video Dreams

"I’ve been brainstorming for a video for this for years," Goss told EDGE on the day of the video’s release, Oct. 29. "It took some time to come up with the right idea."

Fittingly, the theme of the video sees Goss’ skin come to life with lush vines and flowers, as two paper cutout characters, the creation of artist Dave Peterson, dance and flirt and embark on fairy tale adventures that involve a castle, a fire-breathing dragon, and a bear turned aviator. (Peterson also designed several limited edition shirts that are for sale at Goss’ website.)

Goss, meantime, lies perfectly still, lip-synching to the tune, which takes just under three minutes from start to finish. In that time, his entire form becomes a verdant paradise, thanks to sped-up filming.

That means, of course, that the camera was slowed down. "The whole shot took 80 minutes," Goss said. "You can watch the clock throughout the entire thing."

Getting Buff and In the Buff

Lip-synching to his own super-slowed recording was something of a challenge. "The song was slowed down to 60 minutes," Goss related, "and I had to practice long and hard to learn how to listen to something that slow.

"Every second in the video was 30 seconds in real time," the singer/songwriter added.

That makes his relaxed poise, and pose, all the more remarkable, especially seeing that he had to spend that entire time sans clothing.

"Being in the buff is kind of new to me," Goss said, before recalling that he’d stripped off for the cover of his CD "Naked Without" and adding, "Well, I guess with the exception of my 2006 release."

Preparing for his close-up meant paying some extra attention to his physique, which, in the video, is in top form. "I spent a lot of time in the gym and went on a pretty intense diet for the last three weeks," Goss revealed. "Carbs were not a part of the diet," he added, with a laugh.

The take-home?

"It was good to really take nutrition seriously," Goss noted. "I’ve worked out a lot in my life, but always pretty much ignored nutrition. I feel like I learned a lot."

But now he’s done with the video, is he back to enjoying the occasional plate of spaghetti?

"Lots and lots of plates," the talented young musician said.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Assistant Arts Editor. He also reviews theater for WBUR. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.


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