by Troy Maillis
Tom Goss, a singer/songwriter based out of
DC, is currently on tour to promote his new
album “Turn It Around.” He is making an appearance at
on Thursday, May 19. The album, which has already created quite
the buzz among several radio stations and popular DJ’s, is the
artist’s third full-length musical endeavor. The album is
described as “a collection of eleven original acoustic pop
songs bound together by moody, smart lyrics.” Tom, who pursued a
career as a Catholic priest prior to music, recently spoke with
Mark’s List about his new music, his controversial music video,
his love of sports and what’s next on the agenda.
You are performing at The Manor Complex
in Fort Lauderdale
soon. Which songs are you planning to perform?
I don't usually decide what I'm playing
until before the show. Sometimes I even change it up
during the show. If there is something someone wants to
hear all they have to do is let me know and I'll usually slide
For someone who has never heard your
songs, how would you describe your style?
I play acoustic pop—think Jason Mraz, Dave
Matthews, Jack Johnson, David Gray and you'll get close.
Of all the songs on your new album “Turn
It Around,” which is your favorite and why?
It depends. I love the energy in "It's
All Over" and "Turn It Around." On the opposite end of the
spectrum, I love the groove of "You Know That I Love You." I
guess it would depend on the day.
You have received some great reviews for
“Turn It Around.” Were you surprised by the reception?
I'm not sure I was surprised. I am
very excited about this album and think it's my best work yet.
I'm very happy that people are responding to it positively.
There is always doubt in the back of my mind. The energy
in the songs is a change of departure from my last couple
releases. I really wanted getting back to the fun of music.
I'm glad that people wanted to as well!
Your video for “Lover” focused on gay
soldiers serving in he military. What is the overall message you
wanted that video to send?
Overall it's a love story. The
circumstances around the love story are tragic, yet real. There
are three DADT discharged soldiers in the video and the director
was discharged as well. More than anything we wanted to
tell their stories as truthfully and respectively as we could.
Have you received any criticism?
It received some criticism but not much.
You know how people can be, they can do everything better than
you, yet they do nothing but make nasty comments online. I
don't really focus too much on that. We did it for
current, former and future gay soldiers. That's whose
opinions I care about and am sensitive to. Every comment
or conversation I have had with a soldier or their partner has
been overwhelmingly positive.
Catholic priest to recording artist—how
did that happen?
Well it's not as simple as that [laughs].
We all try on different roles in our lives. Those are just
two of many that I have tried on. I'm grateful for all of
Your experience as a priest is chronicled
in the song, “All I Ever Wanted.” Was it difficult to write that
Yes and no. My writing process is very
subconscious. I didn't realize that I was still angry at
God for that experience. I was trying to write a song and
I was reading a story about a priest. I looked down and
saw the man in the collar, threw the magazine across the room
and the song flowed it. It's always hard to admit that you
aren't as strong or as healed as you would like to believe, but
I'm lucky to have an outlet where I am honest with my emotions.
What other artists are you listening to
right now? Are there any in particular you would like to
collaborate with in the future?
I've been listening to Snow Patrol, Jason
Mraz and Imogean Heap. I listen to a lot of music on
shuffle as well. I'd love to collaborate with Jason Mraz
or Ben Folds, they just have so much fun with their music.
It's inspiring to watch.
What is the must frustrating thing to you
about the current music industry?
I get frustrated that artists don't realize
the impact they have on those that listen to their music.
If musicians focused on making the world a better place instead
of sex, shoes and money, think of how much better off we would
You wrestled in high school and did
gymnastics before that. What did you enjoy the most about those
sports? Are you still involved with those sports?
I love sports. I was lucky to be able
to do them at a very high level—I ended up wrestling through
college. I don't think that anyone would consider
wrestling "fun" but there is a great sense of community, and
looking back it was a necessary outlet for years of aggression.
It was hard to let go of wrestling, but the shear physical shape
you have to be in to compete is just not something that I'm
willing to commit to anymore. The last time I wrestled was
about five years ago—it lasted for five minutes. I spent a week
not wanting to move because I was so sore, and I beat the hell
out of my face. I let go of my wrestling ego there.
I hate working out but love sports and competition, I still play
a lot of soccer and kickball. I'll likely join a dodge
ball and softball league this year. Fun times!
Do you think it’s getting easier for
athletes to come out among their peers?
That's a good question—I don't know. I
would assume probably. I didn't date anyone through
college and was a virgin until I was 23. My parent’s
separation left me very scarred and I vowed to never be in a
relationship. I suppressed all my sexual energy, it was
something that I honestly had no interest in. I assumed I
was asexual until I fell in love at 23. For those reasons
I didn't come out until after college. My former teammates
were pretty shocked. I had one who expressed frustration
that he used to get his ass kicked by a gay guy. Pretty
funny, right? But in all seriousness, I think that opens
the door for someone who comes after me. In the thousands
of people I meet every year I've only met one other gay man who
wrestled in college. I think the more that come out the
easier it is for those who follow.
Now that your tour is underway, what are
you looking forward to the most in the upcoming months?
I love meeting people along the way. I
love performing. I look forward to every night for
different reasons, people, places, food. I love food.
After the tour, what are you some of your
I'll be shooting a new music video in the
summer and spending a lot of time with my husband who I leave
far too often!
You can check out his poignant new
album “Turn It Around” at
Music video for "Lover"