M.T.L. (Made Them Lions) Forgotten How To Dream

Cashbox Canada MTL.png

Submitted by Sandy Graham


M.T.L. (Made Them Lions) is a name you should remember – because they are hot and ready to break internationally and they are not only Canadian but from the intoxicating and beautiful city of Montreal, Quebec.


Founded by Mike Valletta and Matt Gillis, the band is known for their pop rock with hints of “feel good” reggae. Having shared the stage with some of today’s best known artists, including Simple Plan, Down With Webster, Sean Paul, B.O.B, The Wanted, Flo Rida and many more.


Speaking to Mike at his home in Laval (a suburb of Montreal) it is obvious why there is such energy on stage with these five young artists. “Matt and I have known each other since we were kids and as the expression goes we are brothers from another mother. Our families know each other, there is history there and I believe it resonates within the band. We grew up in Laval, went to High School together and with the grace of our families, got to use home to learn to play and hone our skills. Quebec is hard to compare to anywhere else as far as the music scene goes but we are all bilingual so we fit on both sides comfortably.” (Two tracks on their album has been written and recorded in both English and also French as a way to pay homage to their bilingual roots and culture.)


Following the release of these charts topping singles, M.T.L has had success on television as well. Their music video for “Red Cups” stole and maintained the #1 spot for best video on Musique Plus for several weeks. After countless tours, festivals, TV and radio performances M.T.L. have built a raging high octane live show packed with energy, great vocal deliveries and stage presence.


Over the years the band has also been involved as supporters for various youth organizations, namely “Ici Par Les Arts” and “Dans la Rue”. Two prominent Canadian organizations who aim at mentoring troubled and homeless youth through selected arts and academic initiatives. M.T.L continues to be actively involved as the spokespeople for those two organizations. M.T.L has recently participated in multiple fundraising events helping raise over 60 000$ for the Lakeshore Hospital, and have completed two high school tours, visiting over 30 schools across Quebec and Ontario with a mandate to promote anti-bullying. M.T.L isn’t only about “positive” vibes, but about enriching community life and supporting those in need however and whenever they can.


Since 2012, Made Them Lions have had six Top 40 radio singles in French Canada with distribution by Select. In 2014, they released “Crazy,” which reached #15 on the Palmares Top 100 Chart, which is Quebec’s equivalent to the Billboard Top 100. Opening for Simple Plan at the 2012 International Balloon Festival in Quebec for over 60,000 people as well as the Coca Cola Festival in the Old Port of Montreal for over 20,000 people the band is one who has their eye on the prize. “We love to play, we love our fans, we love to write and we all get along like a family. It doesn’t get much better than that. We have all had work ethics instilled in us from our families who have played a major role in supporting our careers. The future looks bright for M.T.L. and we are grateful to everyone who has shown their support of the band.”


With the release of the video ‘Forgotten How to Dream’ the song might just be the one to garner the attention these guys deserve. The message in it is all encompassing with many meanings. “It is all about how you interpret it” says Valetta, “it is about the struggle of being bullied, so the scene in the high school with the young boy hits home. We wanted to be subtle as well so the two girls holding hands and going into the Metro (Montreal subway) can be seen whatever way you want to see it. The young girl who is leaving the house, with a black eye and and abusive partner sitting not even noticing is an act of triumph, she is leaving. It is all about how you see it. We always have to remember to dream – so try to get that magic back – some people have ‘Forgotten How to Dream’ and M.T.L. wants to remind everyone to keep dreaming. The video is all about struggle, triumph and hope.”


‘Forgotten How to Dream M.T.L. (Made Them Lions)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRQIx3PnY7s.

For more on the band www.mtlband.ca

Press and Publicity: Strut Entertainment
E: liz@strutentertainment.com