A CONVERSATION WITH: Tom Goss on his latest video, "Lover"

Just before the holidays, I called my friend and musician, Tom Goss to talk about his latest video Lover. We met last March, at the Human Rights Campaign rally in DC to Repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell. For those of you not aware, this policy kept soldiers from being openly gay while serving our country. Thankfully, after a long hard fight, President Obama signed it's repeal into law just before Christmas.
The video features Tom as the bereaved partner of an army solider killed while on duty in Afghanistan. Loss of a loved one killed in battle is not a new story, but when those involved are gay servicemembers and their partners, it's one that is rarely ever told.

(Tom's responses appear in blue italics.)
On how it all began.
The song is actually from 2009. It originally appeared on the album, Back to Love. In my mind this song has always demanded a video, and I've kinda kicked around ideas but none of them really fit. Then I was talking to a friend in Pennsylvania, and we talked about a screenplay he was writing about 2 soldiers separated by war.
He kept quoting lyrics from "Lover" and during the conversation something just clicked. I've always felt that "Lover" demanded a video. This story has always needed to be told, and it's one that no one was telling. I really wanted to do it, but it had to be done right. 
I hashed out ideas with the directors of the video (Aram Vartian and Michael Key), as to what it would look like. Dylan Comstock was brought on as director of photography. Calls were made to David Hall, Mike Almy and Danny Hernandez about being part of this video. All of whom were former servicemembers that were discharged under the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy. So glad that everyone was on board! 
On making the video.
The most fun moment was shooting the war scenes. We were doing something different than had been done before. It was a big project! We had a blood guy on the set...fun stuff going on... In the end, it was great to see months of preparation come to fruition.
Ben Horen, who played my lover is amazing! I'm not an actor. I'm a musician. The role I played in the video was a challenge for me. The scene where I'm walking through the house only lasts for about a minute, and I worried how to do it. But watching Ben made it easier. It was just amazing to work with everybody, actually.
On Tom's husband, Michael Briggs, for who the song "Lover" was originally written.
Michael was amazing through the entire process. I took one of his most favorite love songs that was made for him, and then changed it into something different. The scenes where I walk through the house, is actually where I live. I had to remove pictures and remnants of us, in order to shoot the video. I was in the doghouse for a little while, but it was worth it.
On the importance of the video.
The repealing of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" really played a central role in my personal life as well as my musical life. Especially in 2010. 
I think stuff like this is relevant. Mainstream media hasn't picked it up. That's why we made it.  
This is what happens. This is the truth. Until people start seeing it in the same vein as a straight relationship... they aren't gonna understand it. 

It's our responsibility to educate people, and to communicate with people. To have these conversations whether they are difficult or not, so that they can see things for what they are and through the lens of the bias that they have.

This is such a beautiful song and moving video, in its content, production, and especially in its concept. I hope that people see it and realize that gay or straight, we all experience the same emotions of love and loss. 

Check out the behind the scenes gallery courtesy of Dylan Comstock!
Thanks to everyone involved in creating this video.
Thanks to Dylan for the permission to publish his behind the scenes photo stills.
Thanks to everyone who advocates for equal rights.
Thanks to all our soldiers, gay or straight, who serve our country.
Special thanks to Tom, for using his amazing talent to shed light on such an important matter.
Thank YOU for checking out this article and blog.
Now spread the love and share it with others! :)


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