Go-Go Boy Center Stage: Buttons from Dallas
Article written by Alexander Rodriguez, host of On the Rocks with Alexander
Are things truly bigger in Texas? Tell Dallas go-go stud Buttons to turn around and yes, you’ll be convinced that at least the cakes are bigger in Texas. We met Buttons at Dicks and Brunch during Dallas Pride and it was charm at first sight. With cowboy boots, a cowboy hat, and short shorts that would make Daisy Duke blush, he stole our hearts. That mischievous smile and twinkle of the eye didn’t hurt either. He’s not shy and should headline the stage version of Magic Mike. He’s also a big-hearted sweetheart.
We chatted with Buttons in between Dallas gigs during one of his power stretch routines…we could barely focus on the questions for this Andrew Christian exclusive:
How did you get into go-go dancing?
I had always loved to dance and been enamored with female strip clubs growing up. When I turned 17 I googled “gay male strip clubs in Dallas” and I and my best friend drove around and I “interviewed” (basically took off my clothes and danced.) One club told me to come back on Sunday night for the amateur competition and if I won I’d get the job while another told me to come in Friday night and start. Guess which one I went with? Lol. I ended up working at every major club in Dallas over the next handful of years.
What was your first go-go gig like?
My very first night dancing was intimidating and exhilarating simultaneously. I was so young and so fresh to the game at that point and being raised in a conservative suburb of Texas it was like a small pond fish being dropped into the ocean. It felt very fun and free to be up on top of the bar and on my box just dancing the night away and I quickly became enamored with the lifestyle.
What do you love most about go-go dancing?
I love the performance aspect of it! I genuinely feel so free and comfortable up on a stage. While most people would feel nervous or anxious to be half-naked in front of a huge crowd staring at them, I soak it up. Dancing helped transform me from extremely shy and often times insecure into confident and self-assured. I grew up watching and studying Beyonce (and am still a very proud member of the BeyHive) and she inspired me in so many ways. I have my stage persona alter ego (Buttons is the name I was given) and being able to switch off JD and become Buttons on stage is always thrilling.
What do you like least about go-go dancing?
The stigma and judgment (sadly from our own community mostly) that we are somehow all sluts, can be bought, or are lesser than. We’re all human beings at the end of the day and the job doesn’t define us. While there are certainly always a few tricks in the club there are also guys with big goals and dreams that they are working to fulfill. Also, being groped without consent especially if dollars aren’t being handed over is clearly no fun.
What is your craziest go-go dancing story?
One time I went to go work a private bachelor party event with another dancer because they were offering big money and the club wasn’t popping that night and I rode with one guy in his Ferrari and he had a gun. The story gets crazier from there but I’ll save that for my inevitable confessions of a dancer memoir.
Have you ever gotten "friendly" with any of the patrons?
I generally made it a rule to never hook up with a customer because I didn’t wanna be known around town as the slutty striper but I did make two exceptions. One was the worst date of my life with this guy from the Marines who came in and tipped me a lot and asked me out on a date and proceeded to ghost me the next day, haha. The other was a “straight” guy who came in ALONE the night of his bachelor party and he clearly wanted to experiment with men and he was honestly so hot that I broke my rule and went home with him. I do regret it though because as we were messing around his fiancé called and I’ve never felt so low down and grimy. Single and openly gay men were it for me from that point on.
Have you ever gotten "friendly" with any of other go-gos backstage?
Another rule I had was not dating co-workers because it was always a hot ass mess! However, there is one dancer I had an entanglement with. It was extremely short-lived and long story short, I ended up fighting him on stage and getting banned for two months. At least the customers got a good show out of it!
What do you love most about living in Dallas?
One thing about me, I’m gonna EAT! Haha but seriously we have so much good food here.
Is everything bigger in Texas?
Y’all will just have to come visit and see for yourself.
What is your coming-out story?
My coming out story is pretty boring because I’ve always been so clearly flamboyant that there wasn’t much “coming out” to do. I was one of only two openly gay boys in my city during my school years so it was challenging but I’m proud to have always been my authentic self.
What kind of underwear do you wear around the house?
I’m constantly walking around my house in my underwear and I mostly stick to a nice pair of briefs or a thong.
What is your favorite kind of underwear to go-go in?
Thongs, thongs, thongs. I don’t really like to wear much else on stage but Dallas has some strict laws now so it’s made expressing myself and pulling together a sickening look much more difficult.
How do you keep those cakes in shape?
I’m actually a personal trainer and owner of Body X Buttons so I work out 6 days a week and really just love being active. Running track back in the day and twerking all the time seems to have helped a little too.
If you were to design a pair of Andrew Christian underwear, what would they look like?
Oooooh, this is a good one! I’ve actually always wanted to play designer for a day because I have so many ideas in my head but no idea how to make them come to life. Off the top of my head, I’d make a tie-side thong that is covered in spikes in the front similar to the Louboutin shoes. The tie sides would be long chains that dangle off the side and the back would be the same with nothing but a metallic chain covering the goods.
You can follow Buttons on his personal IG: @cakeheaux and his fitness IG: @bodyxbuttons