The short-lived boy band NLT (Not Like Them) are perhaps best remembered for what happened after their breakup, as opposed to what occurred during their brief existence. Assembled by R&B producer Chris Stokes, NLT began taking shape when Stokes booked a local dance studio in Los Angeles to hold rehearsals for a different group, B2K. The studio's owners had a son, Vahe "V" Sevani, with musical aspirations of his own. Informed by Stokes that his demo would be given a shot as long as he was part of a group, Sevani began seeking out additional singers. First on his list was Justin Joseph "JJ" Thorne, who had worked with him on an instructional dance video (and had also, coincidentally enough, appeared in a B2K video). Soon after, Dallas-based performer Kevin McHale was found through an agent, who also referred a theater actor named Travis Garland to the group.
Stokes signed the group -- now a fully formed quartet -- to his own TUG Entertainment label and enlisted longtime affiliate Marques Houston (as well as Troy "Treezah" Johnson, Timbaland, and the Underdogs) to collaborate on material for an album. Not Like Them was set for release during the summer of 2007, prefaced with the single "That Girl." Although several follow-up singles were released, Not Like Them never materialized, and the album was eventually canceled. Left with no album to promote, the members of NLT called it quits in 2009.
Kevin McHale was the first NLT veteran to resurface, appearing later that year as a disabled choral student in the TV show Glee. It was through Glee that McHale made his official CD debut, and he performed multiple songs on the show's soundtrack series. Meanwhile, Travis Garland continued working on R&B-influenced music with the blessing of Perez Hilton, who managed to secure him a high-profile appearance on American Idol in 2010. ~ Andy Kellman & Andrew Leahey