Tom Goss Releases New Ode to Plus-Sized Men, “Round in All the Right Places”
It’s no secret that pop singer Tom Goss is attracted to plus-sized men. Five years after the release of “Bears” — his song that continues to play at gay bear bars and fur festivals worldwide — he is reinstating his commitment to them with “Round in All the Right Places,” a soulful new track that combines sultry lyrics with shapely tones. “Even after ‘Bears’, people would constantly ask me if I really had a thing for large men,” Tom says. “I used to get annoyed by the question, but then I started to reflect on it and I came to the conclusion that I hadn’t done an adequate job of describing what is so intoxicating to me about men of size. For this one, I wanted to write something that was more specific and mature. I didn’t want to hold back. I wanted to be direct, honest and graphic; to really convey the shape, the allure, the seduction of big men.” Produced by Goss and mixed by Marr Zimm, “Round in All the Right Places” will be available on iTunes, Spotify and all major digital platforms on Friday, October 12.
“I had been trying to write ‘Round in all the Right Places’ for some time, but what was coming out simply wasn’t working for me,” recalls Goss from his LA home. “Then I got a text from a friend who happens to be round and absolutely beautiful. I asked him what he hated most about his body. He said his Flintstone feet. I was floored, mainly because, to me, everything about his body is stunning. So I began asking other men of size the same question and no one was able to tell me, ‘not a damn thing, I love it all!’”
Goss hopes to flip the script on perceived beauty with his song. “The world is telling plus sized people that their butts are sagging and their bellies are too flabby. ‘Change who you are, lose it at all costs,’ we’re told. Then we wonder why people often view themselves in a negative light. I want to send some messaging out into the world that says the opposite.”
He admits it’s messaging he, too, could use. “My mother has always struggled with body issues and has most certainly passed those anxieties down to me. I have bought into society’s vision of beauty. I feel very constrained by it on a day to day basis. In some ways, my success depends on it. Image is everything, is it not? The music industry says I must be thin, so I do my best to stay thin. I long for the day when I can fully accept my body, in whatever state it is at the time.”
He’s not alone. According to the National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA), while gay men make up just 5 percent of the national male population, they account for 42 percent of men who report having an eating disorder.
Tom Goss was raised in Kenosha, Wisconsin, a small city on Lake Michigan, between Chicago and Milwaukee. His parents divorced with he was in the 4th grade. It was not, and is still not, a good situation. He learned at a very young age that relationships can be damaging and cause pain. As a result, he didn’t go on his first date until he was 22, while in seminary, training to be a Catholic priest.
“I had spent my high school years focused on wrestling, my studies and friends. I didn’t have the typical emotional or sexual drive that other guys seemed to have. Honestly, I thought it was something everyone around me was making up.”
It wasn’t until he fell in love (with a plus-sized man) that he realized that he did have sexual and emotional desires. They were just buried and misdirected. Instead of looking at women, or at men that society deemed beautiful, his attraction was toward gay men called bears. “Once I realized what I liked, it was easy to find beauty and sexual attraction everywhere I looked,” he says.
The “Round in All the Right Places” music video features some of the plus-sized men of Tom’s dreams. “Dexter and Robert are two men I’ve admired for years. I found Shane and Lawrence through social media, and when I realized was missing a big, burly, white-haired gentlemen, I reached out to Ken, who I follow on Instagram. He’s stunningly beautiful and has such dynamic tattoos. I knew I had to capture them on film! I called him and a week later he was on a plane to the shoot.”
Tom Goss directed and co-produced the “Round in All the Right Places” video himself with additional production and cinematography by Nathaniël Siri. “I couldn’t be happier with the visuals, and the beautiful men behind the visuals,” Tom continues. “Yes, I absolutely objectify the men, but I’m careful to do it in a way that is respectful, artistic and focused on that which makes them beautiful and unique. Too often in media, large men are painted as villains or buffoons; the butt of a joke. The goal here was to uplift and empower men of size and embrace their beauty.”
“Round in All the Right Places” is Tom’s opus to plus-sized men but its message is a universal one. “Everyone should see the beauty in themselves and love every inch of their bodies.”