The year was 2000 and Lou Pearlman, the super creepy music producer who would later die in prison, was putting together a boy band called O-Town. Because it was also the early days of reality TV, Pearlman was also producing a show called Making the Band, so that viewers could follow as Pearlman auditioned and selected the members of his new band.
In the end Pearlman selected five young men to be the members of the O-Town. He announced that not only would they be stars but that he would also pretty much control every aspect of their lives and music. Four members of the band were okay with that. Ikaika Kahoano was not. Declaring both Pearlman and O-Town to be “wack,” Kahoano left O-Town and instead, got together with two other musicians who auditioned for a spot with the boy band, Bryan Chan and Mike Miller. They were signed by Atlantic Records, who promptly held a contest in the pages of Teen People to select a name for the new band. The winner? LMNT (as in Element).
Now, since every boy band has to have at least four members, Matthew Morrison was recruited to serve as the fourth member of LMNT. If that name sounds familiar, that’s because he later went on to play Mr. Schuester on Glee. Morrison was apparently as miserable in LMNT as Kahoana was in O-Town because he left the band before they recorded their first album. Morrison was replaced by Jonas Persch.
With all the drama that went into forming the band, it can be easy to overlook their music. It was pretty much standard 2001 boy band stuff. In fact, there’s little distinguish LMNT from O-Town, except for the fact that LMNT didn’t have Lou Pearlman stalking around in the background. Instead, they had Disney. For instance, their song Hey Juliet first gained popularity when it was featured on an episode of Lizzie McGuire.
The video for Hey Juliet …. well, it’s all about doing laundry and having fantasies and, amazingly enough, there’s four members of the band and there’s four women in the laundromat so no one gets left out. If you had any doubt that this song was from 2001, the Matrix homage will erase them.
(As for LMNT, they broke up around 2003.)